Regulated breathing -- is pranayam. Breath is a very important tool all of us have but it is the most under utilized of all. Every rhythm of the breath has a corresponding emotion in the mind when we are angry there is a diff rhythm, when anxious the pattern is different etc. And the opposite is true too. That is, whenever the mind changes, the rhythm of the breath immediately changes. Therefore, if -- if you change that rhythm of the breath -- the mind has to change immediately.
It is always a nice idea to learn the technique properly as incorrect method may be harmful for the body. Pranayam is one of the greatest discoveries that has ever happened. Pranayam is an inner journey. And pranayam is the fourth step on the yogic path -- and there are only eight steps. Half the journey is completed on pranayam. Pranayam never means breath control. It simply means the expansion of the vital energy. Prana-ayam: prana means the vital energy hidden in breathe, and ayam means infinite expansion.