Pranayama and the Actor

I have practiced Pranayama yoga, daily, for the past six years, and have recently become a certified Pranayama breathwork instructor. Pranayama breathwork combined with the Linklater technique embody the lion's share of my preparation for any performance. 


In the demanding realm of acting, the integration of Pranayama yoga into a daily routine proves invaluable for actors seeking heightened performance and artistic excellence. As a theater professor at a prestigious Ivy League college, I advocate for the profound benefits that a disciplined Pranayama practice can impart on an actor's craft. The emphasis on alternate nostril breathing and breath retention serves as a transformative tool, fostering a state of calm and mindfulness crucial before stepping onto the stage.


Pranayama techniques empower actors to harness the power of breath, cultivating a profound connection between the body and mind. Alternate nostril breathing, in particular, balances the hemispheres of the brain, promoting mental clarity and emotional equilibrium—essential qualities for conveying authenticity on stage. Moreover, intentional breath retention instills a focused presence, allowing actors to navigate the intricate nuances of their characters with poise and precision. In the crucible of live performance, the daily practice of Pranayama becomes a cornerstone, elevating an actor's ability to express, connect, and captivate audiences with unparalleled depth and authenticity.