The right mix of Pranayamas and Asanas
How many pranayamas should a typical yoga practitioner do? Since the start of the year is traditionally a period when people fine tune their practice, I thought the following quote would be helpful:
“How many pranayamas should I do in one day?” Krishnamacharya responded by asking, “How old are you — about forty years? … Then you must do four times that number daily. Do 160 pranayamas a day.” (By “one pranayama” he meant one round of inhalation and exhalation.)
Early in 1975, Krishnamacharya had tol me, “You must do pranayama for half the time you spend practicing asanas.” And in a class on the Hatha Yoga Pradipika, he had told me, “One must practice pranayama for at least three hours a day.”
… I asked Krishnamacharya why he had made different recommendations about pranayama. He answered, “The person who asked me in the lecture a few days ago was a yoga teacher. A teacher must always be ahead of his students in his practice. Therefore I told him to practice more. … You are also teaching yoga, but you are only around thirty years old now. He is ten years older than you. At your stage of life, you can do pranayama for half the time you spend practicing asanas. As you grow older, you must do more pranayama. When you are sixty years old, you must do pranayama for twice the time you spend on asanas.