Background on Energy Flow through the body
Chakras are the invisible points through which energy flows in the body. There are seven in total beginning with the root chakra at the base of your sitting bones moving straight upward through the crown of your head to the crown chakra. Importantly, when one of these points is “blocked” and energy cannot flow through, the body shows negative mental and physical symptoms. This blockage (or blockages) can be relieved through the yoga asanas, or poses, in addition to chants, affirmations and hand gestures (mudras). These help to open and align the chakra center. I discuss the second chakra here as it relates to tempering anxiety.
2nd Chakra: Sacral/Pelvic
The second of the seven chakra energy centers is located just below the naval in the lower abdomen and in Sanskrit is called “Svadhisthana”, meaning “one’s own dwelling”. It is associated with creativity, healthy relationships, and confidence. It is also associated with the color orange.
When blocked, problems such as anxiety, depression, addiction and self-doubt will manifest in the body and physical symptoms such as lower back pain, kidney, bladder and reproductive problems may surface. When my anxiety is high, I look towards clearing my second chakra. After researching the second chakra and the healing that can take place, I have incorporated some of the below into my daily and/or weekly workout routines.
Yoga Asanas to Open the Second Chakra
Goddess Pose (Deviasana)
Boat Post (Navasana)
Butterfly Forward Fold
Pigeon Post (Padarajakapotasana)
Seated Spinal twist (Ardha Matsyendrasana)
Yogic Bicycle (Dwichakrikasana)
Sun Salutations-Perform several rounds of sun salutation in the morning before you begin your day.
Seated Pelvic Circles-This comes from the Kundalini yoga practice where you are seated on the floor in Easy Pose (legs crisscrossed) with your hands on your knees. While breathing in, move in a circle with your torso to the right and in front. Then, breathe out while you finish the circle moving back around, rounding out your back on the exhale, similar to a seated, moving cat-cow. Continue this for several breaths. This is a great exercise overall for the back and the root (first) chakra as well.
Sodarshan Chakra Kriya-think the mantra “wahe guru” while you take 16 mini breaths in, exhale, take 16 more mini breaths in, exhale, 16 in, exhale, and then inhale for five to ten seconds. Expect to spend around eleven minutes completing his entire Kundalini sequence. If you are experienced with Kundalini and can contemplate on a full mantra: “har haray hari wahe guru”.
Chant the word “vam” while seated in Easy Pose before and after completing the above asanas.
Sakthi mudra-touch both your pinky and ring fingers together, place thumbs in between the index and middle fingers while touching the knuckles of the thumbs together
Healing Meditation-this is a great healing meditation if you have twenty minutes in your day. I like doing it after my workday, but it would work well first thing in the morning or on a lunch break.