The Yogi's Guide to the 7 Chakras

The Yogi's Guide to the 7 Chakras

Chakras are energy centers within the body which you can visualize as spinning wheels. These energy centers must flow freely individually, and collectively, for you to experience optimal wellness.

When you experience feelings of imbalance or misalignment, one, or more, chakras are not spinning properly, which creates a stagnant energy within the body. When they become blocked with this stagnant energy, you can experience physical ills, emotional distraught, spiritual confusion, and mental fogginess.

These seven chakras are located along your central column, spanning from right above the crown of your head down to the base of your spine. They symbolize a certain aspect of yourself and are associated with a physical area of the body and specific life circumstances. They can be viewed as lessons in understanding how your body, mind, and spirit are interconnected.

The 7 Chakras Chart Let’s break down the 7 chakras: what each of them symbolize, what happens when they are imbalanced, and how to find balance through yoga postures.  

1. Root Chakra (Muladhara Chakra)

The Root Chakra is located at the base of your spine. It is associated with the element of earth.

The root chakra keeps you grounded in a strong personal identity. It impacts how you live and interact with the world around you. Like the roots of a tree, the root chakra is tied to how well you can ground yourself. It symbolizes basic needs like shelter, safety, security, instinct, water, food, and support, which are the roots from which all the other chakras flow.

When balanced, you feel supported and full of life.

When out of alignment, you can experience feelings of fear, insecurity, depletion, exhaustion, anxiety, and depression.

The root chakra can be balanced by walking in nature and surrounding yourself with people who care.

Yoga poses to balance the root chakra:

  • warrior I
  • eagle pose
  • tree pose
  • child’s pose
Warrior I yoga pose for balancing root chakra

2. Sacral Chakra (Svadhisthana Chakra)

The sacral chakra is located between the navel and the pelvic bone, just up from the root chakra. It is associated with the element of water and feelings of fluidity. It is symbolic of your need for others. It is about finding relationships that satisfy you on a deep level. It is related to sexuality, confidence, creativity, emotions, and ability to connect with others.

When this chakra is balanced, you may feel abundant, creative, pleasure, and fulfillment from connection.

When it is not aligned, you may experience unstable emotions, lack of creativity, sexual dysfunction, loneliness, and have difficulty feeling pleasure.

The root chakra must first be balanced for the sacral chakra to flow freely because the root chakra is the foundation from which you will form connections. Once the root chakra is balanced, balancing the sacral chakra occurs through dancing, creativity, and expressing affection.

Yoga poses to balance the sacral chakra:

  • goddess
  • dancer’s pose
  • pigeon pose

Dancer's yoga pose for balancing the sacral chakra

3. Solar Plexus Chakra (Manipura Chakra)

The solar plexus chakra is located above the sacral chakra in the navel area. It is associated with the element of fire. This chakra represents self-confidence, personal power, personal identity, and digestion.

When the navel chakra is balanced, you may feel confident and motivated.

When it is not aligned, you can experience pain in the stomach region, have difficulty with digestion, and feel low self-esteem.

Yoga poses to balance the solar plexus chakra:

  • sun salutations
  • boat pose
  • mountain pose

Mountain Yoga Pose

4. The Heart Chakra (Anahata Chakra)

The heart chakra is the fourth chakra and is located around the heart space. This chakra represents love, compassion, forgiveness, and acceptance of others.

When it is not aligned, you experience unhealthy blood pressure, manipulative behaviors, and feelings of unworthiness.

Yoga poses to balance the heart chakra:

  • camel pose
  • cobra pose
  • upward-facing dog pose
Upward facing dog yoga pose

5. The Throat Chakra (Vishuddha Chakra)

The throat chakra is associated with your voice, both audibly and also the voice that represents your “inner truth.”

When it is out of alignment you struggle to express your needs and your thoughts.

When it is aligned you stand strongly in your personal truth and are able to speak that to yourself and others.

Yoga poses to balance the throat chakra:

  • supported shoulder stand
  • circling the neck
  • supported headstand

Supported headstand yoga pose

6. The Third-Eye Chakra (Ajna Chakra)

The third-eye chakra is located between your eyebrows on your forehead. This location is symbolic of your worldview, where your inner truth and outer view of life merge. This is where your psychic ability lives.

When this chakra is balanced, you may hear the voice of your intuition clearly, release the need to follow your ego, and trust that you will handle what comes your way.

When it is out of balance, you can get trapped in logic and what others perceive as “reality.” This can manifest physically in headaches and vision issues.

Yoga poses to balance the third-eye chakra:

  • easy pose
  • child’s pose
  • cat/cow

Third eye chakra easy yoga pose

7. Crown Chakra (Sahasrara Chakra)

The crown chakra hovers over the crown of our heads. This energy center is out of the body because it represents your spiritual selves, as well as imagination, wisdom, and consciousness. Many say this is symbolic of the idea that you are a spirit currently having a human experience.

When this chakra is balanced, you will transcend a connection exclusively to this world and choose to live from your spirit and human experience. This can be called enlightenment, but it can also be simply realizing that who you are is more than a human body.

When the crown chakra is out of alignment, you may confuse the external world as all there is and forget to nourish the deeper parts of yourself.

Yoga poses to balance the crown chakra:

  • headstand
  • corpse pose (savasana)

Balancing the crown chakra with a headstand

Yoga poses to balance your 7 chakras graphic

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