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It's Called Pranayama': Indians Dismiss Scientific American's 'Cardiac Coherence Breathing

Image Credit: YouTube/Swami Ramdev

Image Credit: YouTube/Swami Ramdev

A Scientific American story which posted how 'Cardiac Coherence Breathing' helps with anxiety, was dispelled by Indian twitter citing that this was 'literally a breathing exercise in Yoga.'

If you’re from India, chances are at some point in your life, somebody must have taught you this exercise for breathing: Inhale for five seconds, hold your breath and then slowly exhale it out.

You’ve probably subconsciously been doing it since it was taught to you. Climbed too many stairs at one go? Reach the top and take a few seconds to do this exercise to stabilize your breathing. Having a panic attack? Concentrate on your breathing first to calm down your fast-beating heart.

And while this may have become common household practice for Indians, it actually stems from Yoga, and has a name - ‘Pranayama.’

‘Praṇayama’ is a Sanskrit word which means “breath control," and has been around for hundreds of years. And while all of this may seem ordinary to you, an Scientific American article explaining this exact process, stated that : ‘Proper Breathing Brings Better Health.’ To this, Indians on Twitter replied, “We know. We’ve known for thousands of years."


To be fair, the Scientific American article does mention Pranayama.

“Recommendations for how to modulate breathing and influence health and mind appeared centuries ago as well. Pranayama (“breath retention”) yoga was the first doctrine to build a theory around respiratory control, holding that controlled breathing was a way to increase longevity."

However, then it delves into “more modern times" and explains how “cardiac coherence offers more detail about the ways that breathing exercises promote relaxation."

Indians on Twitter replied to this saying how this was “literally yoga," and not really a new scientific discovery.

The Scientific American article ends on the note - “Think Reassuring Thoughts While Breathing." None of Indian Twitter seemed to have done that.

Here’s India’s most common icon displaying “Cardiac Coherence Breathing." Or, as it’s been called for over 2000 years, Pranayam.