When starting out your yoga practice you always hear the practitioners or instructors saying that certain poses help to open up a certain chakra. You think to yourself what is a chakra and why do I need to open them? There are 7 chakra centers in our body where energy flows. Closed or blocked chakras can lead to illness and negative energy build up, so understanding what each chakra represents and how to open them is very important.
Here’s a quick guide on each chakra and how to open them:
- Root Chakra: Starting from the bottom, our root chakra which is at the base of the spine and is linked to our feeling of being grounded. It is the foundation to where we build our life. If it’s open you should feel stable and secure with a feeling of a well-rounded balance. If it is imbalanced, try to be more active through yoga, manual cleaning or taking brisk walks.
- Sacral: it is located right below the naval, it is where emotions and sexuality are felt the most. There is and imbalance if you feel emotions are out of whack and having issues with intimacy.
- Solar Plexus: it is located right below the chest and represents our self-esteem, pleasure, will power and personal responsibility.
- Heart: it is located in the heart of course, and represents love, self-love and governs our relationships with others. Imbalances can cause depression, unhealthy relationships and lack of self-discipline.
- Throat: it is located in the center of the neck where it represents our ability to communicate and speak clearly and effectively. Imbalance would cause shyness, arrogance or increased anxiety.
- Third Eye: is located in the center of the forehead between the eyebrows, it represents intuition, attentiveness and foresight. An imbalance will be shown as lack of clarity or direction.
- Crown: the last chakra that makes the connection to all, is located right at the top of the head and represents states of consciousness and divine connection. An imbalanced crown chakra will show a disregard for what is sacred, being close-minded and a disconnection to the spirit.
When trying to open your chakras through your meditation practice, sit in a crossed leg position (Indian style) with your hands gently placed facing upward on your knees and back straight, picture the chakra point location with your eyes closed, take a deep inhale and on your exhale chant out the chakra you are trying to activate and open (chant provided below). Repeat several times until you feel that your intention has been achieved.
Solar Plexus: RAM
Third Eye: OM
Crown: ANG or AH or OM (You may choose either of the three chants)
Once your chakras begin to open you can feel when you have an imbalance. There are also many yoga poses that help to open up your chakras as well. If you are a begginer at both yoga and chakras, taking a class and speaking to a yoga practioner to further your knowledge might be even more helpful. I am not a yoga instructor but the classes I have taken have had chakra activation at the end of the practice. We chanted to each chakra and I left the class feeling like I was floating. I mainly have a home practice so many YouTube videos help out as well if you feel you are not ready to be in a physical class. Chanting can feel embarrassing at the beginning but with time you may find it very therapeutic. Sound can be a form of medicine as well.
“We are not human beings having a spiritual experience, we are spiritual beings having a human experience”. -Pierre Teilhard de Chardin