This Yoga Journal article helps explain something we talk a lot about in yoga, the chakras. Yoga tradition says there are 7 chakras in the body, lined up from the base of the spine to the top of the head, and they are spinning wheels or vortexes of energy, each one with specific properties and emotional meanings. A chakra can be deficient, balanced, or excessive. A deficient or blocked chakra can happen from fear, tension, and past trauma. An overactive or excessive chakra can cause overexertion, a drained feeling, and a sense of imbalance. We can do specific yoga poses to open up blocked chakras and restore balance to the physical and emotional body.
I’ll go post by post here, chakra by chakra. This first blog post will focus on the first chakra, the muladhara or root chakra, which is associated with the earth element and is all about our survival needs: Do you feel well-grounded or ready to flee? Do you take good healthy care of your own basic physical needs or do you take on excess food and gain weight to try and feel grounded? Do you feel in a starving crave of much, or do you greedily hoard possessions or money? Do you miss something intensely or are you satisfied with where you are currently stationed in life?
Balance your muladhara chakra with poses that ground you and loosen up your feet and legs. Roll the soles of your feet on a tennis ball. Sit in toes pose. Stretch your hamstrings, quads, and calves (tight hamstrings will give us the emotional sensation that we’re ready to flee). Strengthen your low body with standing poses. Rest in bound angle pose, legs up a wall pose, and supported child’s pose.
The outcome? “Calmness, patience, and a willingness to slow down and stay in one place… Renew confidence and commitment to the next steps on life’s journey… Fears eased…Trust the earth and body….Settle an overactive mind… Surrender to gravity…No longer felt so worried… More prepared for challenges.”