Chakra exercises are used to stimulate the major chakras in the physical body. Each yoga exercise in this section will help activate and open each one of the seven major energy centers.
Chakra 1The following three hatha yoga excercises work on stimulating and releasing energy from the Muladhara chakra itself:
Locust & Half Locust
Lie face down on the floor with your arms beneath your body, hands touching the front of your thighs. Keeping the knee straight, raise the leg several inches off the floor. Hold for as long as s comfortable and switch to the left leg. If this is comfortable then repeat the same procedure lifting both legs at once.
Head To Knee Pose
Lie down on your back and relax. When ready, stretch your arms over your head, take a deep breath and raise yourself to a seated position, keeping your legs straight out in front of you. Bend the right leg and tuck the left foot into your crotch. Bend over, arms outstretched, reaching out over the left leg. Do not go farther than is comfortable, but go as far as you can. Try to find the threshold between where the tension begins and breath into that spot while you hold the posture. Hold for one to two minutes, return to a seated position, straighten your right leg, bending your left, and repeat. After returning to the position of lying flat on your back (corpse pose) for a brief rest, repeat the same procedure as above, bending over both legs. Be gentle, and tension will ease more quickly.
Deep RelaxationWhen you are ready, begin flexing your fingers and toes, and wiggling your arms and legs. Open your eyes and return to the world refreshed
This is also called conscious relaxation. It involves grounding and relaxing each part of the body, one at a time. Lie flat on your back, and begin by taking several deep, abdomonal breaths. Beginning at the toes, work up your body, moving towards to heart, and consciously release tension in each and every muscle and joint in your body. Be sure to include the eyes, mouth and throat, as much tension is subconsciously held here. Observe your thoughts letting them come and go effortlessly. Allow yourself to observe your body, peacefully breathing in and out, in and out, deeply relaxing.
Excercise for opening the second chakra involve working with movement in the hips and lower abdomen. Simple self-nurturing acivity, such as long, hot baths, showers or swimming should not be overlooked. Nurturing ourselves is the first step to receiving or giving nurturance to others.
The Goddess Pose
Lie flat on your back and relax. Relax especially the legs, pelvis, and lower back. Bend your knees, bringing your feet in close to your buttocks. Slowly allow your knees to part, allowing the weight of the legs to stretch the inner thighs. Try to relax. Do not push your legs farther than is comfortable. Hold this position for two minutes or more. Then slowly bring your knees together again. This puts us in touch with our sexual vulnerability, which paradoxically must be understood before we can fully open ourselves up on this level.
Starting on your back with legs bent, slowly begin to rock your pelvis upward and downward with each breath. Inhale fully into your chest and belly, exhale fully, and upon the end of each exhale, push slightly with your feet so that your pelvis comes off the ground pushing the small of your back into the floor beneath you.
From a standing position, bend your knees slightly, and drop your pelvis forward so that it is directly in your central line of gravity. Keeping the knees bent and flexible, rotate the pelvis in smaller then larger circles. The head and feet should remain in the same place while the pelvis alone does the moving. Try to make the movement as smooth as possible.
This excercise helps move energy through the pelvis, often into the upper chakras. It is a classic Kundalini excercise, and a wonderful energizer.
Lie on your back and relax. Lift your legs six to 12 inches off the floor and spread them apart at this height. Bring together again and then kick our again. Rest after about five of these. Then bring your legs perpendicular to the floor and spread to each side. Bring together and down. Repeat until tired. Raising legs should be accompanied by an inhale, while lowering the legs should be accompanied by an exhale. This excercise is a strong Kundalini-raiser with powerful results. It is important not to strain and to avoid sore muscles. Stay in tune with the body.
Below Are Some Excercise For Strengthening Manipura
Breath of Fire
This is a rapid diaphragmatic breathing, designed to clean toxins from the body and stimulate Kundalini. Sit in an upright posture with back straight and legs relaxed. Using the muscles of your abdomen, SNAP in your diaphragm, causing a quick exhale to escape through your nose. Keep the mouth closed. By relaxing the abdomen, air will natually enter your nose and chest, causing an inhale. When this process is comfortable, repeat quickly, causing several quick, sequential exhales. Do in sets of fifty, with a long, deep breath at the end of each set. Three sets of 50 are usually a good place to start. After a while you can pace yourself according to what feels right.
Lie on your stomach, hands to the side and relax. Take a deep breath and bend yourknees while arching your back so that your hands grab onto your ankles. Let your hands do the work of maintaiining the arch while you rest your body as much as you can in this strange position. Breath deeply and let the breath rock you back and forth slightly. If you can hold this for a while (30 sec. to 2 mins.) you will feel an energizing of your solar plexus.
Hard to maintain without practice, this little gem tightens tummy muscles and develops balance. From a position of resting on your back, bring your feet and legs up (knees as straight as possible) to make a V-shape with your torso. Hold as long as possible then relax.
Opening the heart chakra requires a combination of technique and understanding. First we learn to see the world in terms of relationships. It requires a certain loss of ego, allowing an ability to merge with things outside of the self. And lastly, it requires an understanding and control of the breath, for it is the tool of physical and mental transformation. Unfortunately, the average person does not breathe very deeply. A normal pair of lungs can hold about 2 pints of air, while the average person breathes in about 1 pint or less per breath. Unlike food, which takes hours or even days to digest, each inhalation of air immediately enters the bloodstream. Oxygen must be constantly suppplied to each and every cell, or the cells die quickly. Following are a few basic excercises in complete breathing and opening the chest.
Alternate Nostril Breathing
This is a slow, methodical breath which works on the central nervous system and leads to increased relaxation and deeper sleep. Close off your right nostril with your right hand and breathe in deeply through your left nostril. When the breath is full, close off your left nostril, hold the breath for 8 seconds, and then exhale through your right. When the breath is again empty, inhale again through your right side, hold, then exhale on the left. The pattern is inhale, (hold) switch, exhale, inhale, (hold) switch, exhale. Continue this 10 times or more on each side. Practice of this excercise will generally bring profound changes in as short a time as a week, or even days.
This is a yogic excercise, wonderful to do upon first waking up in the morning. It works on the upper thoracic vertebrae, and helps alleviate "hunchback". Lie flat on your stomach with arms bent and palms placed face down by your ears. Without using your arms as support, slowly lift your head, shoulders, and back-as far as you can go comfortably. Then relax. Lift again, going as far as you can, and then using your arms, push yourself up just a little farther. Stretch the stomach and chest, take a deep breath and relax. Repeat as often as you like.
This is another yogic excercise, designed to expand the chest cavity. Begin by lying flat on your back. Then come to a half seated position and prop yourself up on your elbows, hands on hips. Now extend your head back behind you and arch your back. If you can, touch your head to the floor and breath deeply. Hold as long as is comfortable and relax. Breath deeply again.
The Shoulder Stand
The shoulder stand stimulates the thyroid gland. Lie flat on your back and relax. Lift your legs 90 degrees from the floor, then bring your legs and hips up over the shoulders, supporting yourself on your elbows-hands on your hips. Hold for as long as is comfortable. This also helps to turn around a descending current of energy by making gravity pull in the opposite direction from our normal upright state.
The Fish Pose
The fish pose often follows the shoulder stand as it gives the neck a complementary stretch. Lie flat on your back. With hands on hips, prop your upper body up on your elbows, arching your neck backward until your head touches the floor. This also helps open the chest cavity and stimulates the thyroid.
The plough involves returning to a shoulder stand. Then lower your legs behind your head, touching your feet to the ground. If this is still comfortable, bend your knees and tuck them behind your ears.
The most useful excercise for strengthening the third eye is simple meditation, focusing attention on the centre of the forehead. Visualizations of colours or shapes can be added or you can simply focus on clearing the mind screen until it is clean and blank. Once the screen is blank, visualizations can be willed in answer to questions you may have. If you want to know about someone's health, for example, visualize a picture of their body shape and allow black or white to show areas of health and disease. The limits of this system are only the limits of your imagination. Eye movements, Shoulder stands, Fish, Headstand, Nadi Suddhi, Alternate nostril breathing, Chanting OM.
Eye movements, Shoulder stands, Fish, Headstand, Nadi Suddhi, Chanting OM.