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Pranayamas, or breathing exercises, are extremely important to practicing Hatha yoga properly. Once the breath is controlled, the mind is controlled, according to the yogis. Our energy (Prana) is altered though the exercises, which often involve deep inhalations (usually through the nose), exhalations (through the mouth), and even holding the breath for a few counts. These practices prepare the way for Samadhi (enlightenment). Pranayama practice is also a vital part of Kundalini yoga.