Chakras are an essential and fundamental part of the yoga discipline, connecting spirit and body for transformative healing with disciplined practice. By understanding how these powerful elements work in tandem with your physical yoga sessions, you can further deepen and enhance your students’ experience and your own yoga journey. Here, we’ll focus on what a chakra chart is and how best to use it in your everyday yoga practice.
Why are Chakras so Important in Yoga?
For anyone in yoga, you’ve probably heard, or are familiar with, at least two of the chakras with the third eye and the root (i.e. being grounded). A practiced yoga teacher may take the time to help their class ground themselves by focusing energy through either of these areas. Even as beneficial as they are, there are many different aspects and uses to all the different chakras and here is an area where a holistic viewpoint really pays off.
A chakra is a Sanskrit term that translates to “wheel”, being the different areas of energy focused around the body. Each chakra is something like an ethernet cord that helps transmit energy back and forth. Keeping your chakras open to energy flow is essential, hence, the spinning wheel imagery. Some ancient texts speak of many different chakras but the main school of thought is that there are seven major chakras.
Energy work is often looked on with an air of skepticism but there is a great deal of research into the power of the mind and energy healing, as well as the aromatherapy that follows on the tails of each chakra. Practitioners believe that there is a great deal of harm that negative energy and/or blocked chakras bring about, the result is many of the emotionally-induced health issues many face daily. Therefore, the work of introducing chakra mindfulness into your practice is really centered around dialing your whole and complete self into the session.
No matter what, when you pour your heart into something, you’ll get better results and especially with the many benefits that come with consistent yoga practice. Bottom line, you’ll be a better teacher and your students will get more out of each class.
What a Chakra Chart Is
For the seven different major chakras, there are symbols, colors, precious stones, and other elements that pertain specifically to each. By tuning in with where energy and physical worlds meet, those practicing at this depth of yoga can truly tap into all the benefits the practice provides. A chakra chart helps you zero in on specific chakras and their associated sphere of influence within your body and mind.
Starting from the head down, the seven major chakras include:
Head Crown Chakra: this chakra is right at the very top of your head on the “crown”. Since this is the highest point in your body, it’s fitting that this chakra is believed to be the connection outward into the energy universe. It is thought that this chakra leads to understanding and connectedness. On the chakra chart, you’ll see this symbol incorporating or being associated with the color violet, amethyst stones, and lavender oils.
Third-Eye Chakra: Where insight and intuition are thought to reside, the third-eye chakra is located right between the eyes. If blocked, this energy point can bring on confusion and fogginess of thought. It is said that keeping balance in your life allows for an open chakra that lets in wisdom and awareness. Further stimulation for your chakra are cypress oils and lapis lazuli stones placed directly over the center of your brow.
Neck/Throat Chakra: Communication is the focus of this gateway of energy. Believed that, if unlocked, you will be able to speak your wisdom and truth in a loving and kind way. Some find that the mantra “I speak” during meditation can help unlock your neck/throat chakra. Diffusing elderberry or eucalyptus are another way you can help stimulate the throat chakra.
- Heart Chakra: Located directly over your heart, the heart chakra is connected to loving and healing oneself. In opposition to healing, it is considered to hold onto heartache as well. The epicenter of your energy flow, this could be considered one of the most important energy spots to be unlocked. It is also associated with green on the chakra chart, making it no surprise that some of the best oils to use in your practice are cilantro and thyme.
- Chest/Core Chakra: represented by the color yellow, the chest and core chakra is all about the center of one’s power. Your feelings of confidence and being empowered are thought to originate here so when the flow is off, you can feel inferior or hopeless. Focusing on precious stones like Amber and Tiger’s Eye and utilizing uplifting aromatherapy oils like anise and mint, you can help motivate your inner self through even the toughest asanas. Pushing yourself and your body is good, but be careful to listen to your body and never overdo it.
- Sacral Chakra: one of the most important chakras is the sacral which resides in the lower abdomen about where male and female reproductive organs originate. This is a vital area for physical health, as well as is thought to hold the powers for creativity and meaningful passion. Passion is crucial for the yoga journey and especially as a yoga instructor. The sacral chakra is about feeling the energy that drives you and harnessing it towards a better you. You’ll see shades of orange colors, goldstone, and blood orange essential oils representing this chakra.
- Root Chakra: right up front we spoke of grounding, which is at the center of this chakra’s school of thought. Grounding is thought to bring about stability so it’s fitting that this chakra resides around your tailbone area. Feeling unbalanced, uneasy, or without direction is an indication that some see as a blockage of the root chakra. The color associated with this chakra is red and often onyx stones are utilized. Essential oils used in aromatherapy practice include allspice and rosemary to “re-ground” energy.
The seven chakras offer a good teaching point for helping students be present and in the moment during a session. After all, yoga is an escape from the everyday and a chance to be at peace while the body and mind undergo a major stress relief session. So whether you actively believe in chakras or not, you and your practice can still benefit from paying homage to this ancient wisdom.
DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE CHAKRAS EBOOK
DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE CHAKRAS EBOOK
Gain a better understanding of the chakras as a whole and the yogic practices associated with each as you journey through this ebook.
Best Ways to Incorporate Chakra Charts into Your Practice
We’ve seen that by incorporating chakra mindfulness into your yoga practice, we’re introducing a whole new thought process than just “going through the motions”. Chakras are about grounding yourself, being present, and being open to growth through the practice of yoga. As you work to incorporate chakra charts into your typical sessions, you may be met with some resistance from those who don’t give much credence to energy work.
For those that question why chakras are important with yoga, explain that this is in no way a religion, but rather a way of truly giving it everything you have each and every session. You are engaged, your class is engaged, you’re increasing participation, and you may be incorporating additional practices like the aromatherapy oils we talked about above. A really cool aspect to a beYogi yoga insurance policy is that professionals are covered for more than 490 different modalities simultaneously, including many different forms of yoga and aromatherapy.
Even if you don’t think about it from a health and wellness perspective, having a chakra chart integrated into your practice can be the spark you need to really differentiate your brand of yoga and grow your practice. Added bonus, beYogi policies come with free, professionally designed websites for you to use to start digitally marketing your unique suite of services. Research shows that authority driven marketing is one of the best tools for growing awareness around your services.
Teaching Yoga From a Point of Peace
When you want to expand your practice to include chakra charts and other tools that can enhance a session, you’ll start seeing dividends in yourself as a yoga teacher, as well as the response from students. Students that are more engaged are more likely to stick with your yoga sessions and tell their friends about the great experience they’re having. When you get in such great work, week in and week out, the physical and mental changes are sometimes truly astonishing.
The focus and attention that you’ll bring to your class is going to get noticed, which is where you’ll have the opportunity to be all the more effective for your students. The last piece of the puzzle is to make sure you're starting from a point of peace. Yoga insurance is your personal protection from any “what-ifs” along the way and at just a few dollars a day, yoga insurance is an incredibly affordable way to be able to practice with the utmost confidence.