I love a themed yoga sequence. And one of my favorite series to create is a chakra realignment yoga class to close out the year.
While my teaching schedule is much smaller than it as been in the past, I’m still excited to implement this type of structure. I’m also solely teaching vinyasa classes right now, which has never happened before. From a sequencing perspective, this is huge benefit as I’m planning on creating a simple base sequence, and then swapping out postures as we move through the chakras.
Why Chakra Realignment?
Chakras interact with the body through two systems: the nervous system and the endocrine system. “Chakra” is a Sanskrit word that translates as “wheel” or “vortex,” which provides a great visual for how to think of how they work in our body. Chakras are non-physical yet corporeal presence that are like an overlay to the body. Within our Western understanding of how hormones affect our bodies, and their ability to stimulate or inhibit different functions, it stands to reason that the chakras present another way to understand the holistic systems in our body.
Finding balance – in our emotions, chakras, life, and everything – is the point of the practices I’m building. Here are a few examples of the various imbalances that match with the 7 chakras.
The root chakra works with the adrenal cortex glands. It also governs the back, feet, hips, spine and legs. You can think of it as the center of physical energy, grounding and self-preservation.
The sacral chakra governs the sex organs. Ovaries, testicles, and bladder, bowel and lower intestine. It correlates with feelings and sexuality. When the sacral chakra is balanced, emotions and feelings can flow and be expressed freely.
Navel or Solar Plexus Chakra
An energy worker once described the solar plexus as the furnace of the body. When it’s lit and running, you’re warm and effusive. When it’s out and cold, you feel powerless. And that’s the balance that the navel chakra craves. It governs the stomach, upper intestines, upper back and spine. Imbalances can show up as digestive issues, hypoglycaemia, and areas of power and control.
Just as we traditionally think of the heart, this chakra is the body’s home for compassion, love and spirituality. It’s associated with the circulatory system and the thymus gland, governing the heart, lungs, blood and circulation.
If you’re having trouble expressing yourself, there might be some issues with your throat chakra. Governing the throat, thyroid, mouth, teeth, tongue and jaw, it’s associated with the respiratory system and is the center for sound, speech and expression.
Third Eye Chakra
The third eye as a concept has high meaning in yogic tradition, and that’s reflected from the chakra perspective as well. It governs the pituitary gland, skull, eyes, brain, nervous system and senses while acting as the center of psychic power and higher intuition.
The center of enlightenment, truth and dynamic thought is found in the crown chakra. Governing the top of the spinal cord, brain stem, pain center and nerves, it’s associated with the central nervous system and pineal gland.
Building a Chakra Yoga Sequence
So how do we create a yoga sequence that can address ALL THE THINGS? Here is my preliminary plan. Reminder that not every class will include all these postures – I’ll pick and choose based on the particular chakra we’re focusing on that day.
Balasana (Root + 3rd eye)
Sukhasana (Root, 3rd eye, crown)
+ mudra, chant. Garu + gomhu arms
Cat cow with lions breath (Throat)
Low lunge, hook thumbs over head (Heart)
Scorpion option (3rd eye)
Forward fold (Root)
(all the chakras)
Chair (Solar plexus)
High lunge, hook thumbs (Heart)
Open arm twist (3rd eye)
1 legged tadasana, goal post arms drop head back
Options for tree or toe stand (Crown)
Wide legged forward fold (Root, 3rd eye)
Star pose (Heart)
W1 to the back with cow arms (Crown)
Humble warrior (3rd eye, heart)
Low lunge (Root)
Half split (Solar plexus)
Wide legged forward fold
Twist arm up(3rd eye)
W2 to the front
DD to childs pose to crocodile (Crown)
Locust (3rd eye)
Camel (3rd eye, crown)
Boat (Solar plexus)
Bridge, activated bridge (Root, sacral)
Windshield wiper (Sacral)
Supta baddha konasana
Where I’m getting a little stuck is putting together a unique closing for each session. How do you like to close your yoga classes? How can I make it chakra-specific? Drop a comment or send me a message!