What Is Kundalini Yoga?
The word ‘kundalini’ in kundalini yoga comes from the root word ‘Kundal.’ Kundal means circular or the coil of a snake in Sanskrit. Yoga gurus refer to kundalini energy as a form of energy that is sitting in the base of your spine, sleeping just like a coiled snake.
Now, kundalini yoga is the form of yoga that can activate this energy. The yoga has the capacity to move this energy up along the following kundalini yoga chakras:
- Root Chakra
- Sacral Chakra
- Naval Chakra
- Heart Chakra
- Throat Chakra
- Third Eye Chakra
- Crown Chakra
The kundalini energy is associated with the spiritual wellness of human beings. When you learn how to do kundalini yoga, you also learn how to achieve spiritual enlightenment, otherwise known as the kundalini awakening.
How Does Kundalini Yoga Differs From Other Types Of Yoga?
To fully understand what is kundalini yoga, you also need to know what makes it so different from other types of yoga for beginners.
The main difference between kundalini yoga and other types of yoga is what they focus on. While kundalini yoga works on your spiritual well-being, most other forms of yoga work on your physical and mental well-being.
Most yoga poses include body movements but kundalini yoga poses mostly involve chanting of mantras, the flow of breath in specific patterns, singing, and other similar activities.
Benefits Of Kundalini Yoga
After hundreds of years of practice, we now know that kundalini yoga has a lot of physical, mental, and spiritual benefits. The following benefits of kundalini yoga are backed by both scientific evidence and anecdotal evidence:
- Relief from anxiety and stress
Kundalini yoga kriyas can help you get relief from mild levels of stress and anxiety. In fact, the results of the scientific studies done on the effects of kundalini yoga are so positive that it may be considered as an effective treatment option for various types of generalized anxiety disorders.
- Improves cognitive function
With increasing age, we tend to lose our cognitive function. After the age of 60 to 65, the problem becomes so severe that it decreases the quality of your life. Kundalini yoga kriyas can improve the degrading cognitive function in aged people.
One study on the effects of kundalini yoga revealed that kundalini yoga can improve cognitive function, both in the short-term and long-term, even better than memory enhancement training. So, if you want to improve your reasoning skills, problem-solving skills, and cognitive flexibility, add kundalini yoga to your home workouts.
- Improves Self-Perception
In the age of over-achievers, most people face problems with body positivity and self-acceptance. But chakra kundalini yoga can help you improve both these aspects. In fact, by reducing anxiety related to self-acceptance, kundalini yoga can also treat eating disorders.
Anecdotal evidence also points towards the following benefits of kundalini asanas:
- It develops empathy in you.
- By practicing kundalini yoga, you increase your creativity.
- By activating the kundalini yoga chakras, you attain internal peace.
How To Do Kundalini Yoga Poses
The benefits of kundalini yoga make it sound tough but that is not true. Here is an easy step-by-step guide on learning how to do kundalini yoga for beginners:
- Lotus Pose
It is the most basic seated kundalini yoga asana that assists you in opening your hips. If you experience tightness in the hip area, you can skip the pose.
- Sit on a yoga mat with stretched legs and a neutral spine.
- Now, bend your knees and bring your feet towards your hips as if you are about to sit in sukhasana (also called the easy pose).
- Using both hands, place your right foot on your left thigh and the left foot on your right thigh.
- This is called the lotus pose. Take deep breaths while holding the pose.
- Cobra Pose
As its name suggests, this chakra kundalini yoga asana helps you in activating your kundalini chakra.
- Lie down on your stomach on the ground.
- Your legs should be pressed against each other with the tops of your feet resting on the floor.
- Your hands should be directly beneath the shoulders, parallel to each other.
- Inhale and raise both your head and the torso by putting pressure on the floor with your lower body.
- Now, place your palms on the floor and straighten the arms. This will lift your stomach and the chest.
- Pull your shoulders back and look straight into the skin.
- Hold this kundalini yoga pose for about 30 seconds and then return back to the position where you started the yoga.
- Archer pose
As you can guess from the name of this kundalini yoga for chakras, you have to stand in a position as if you are holding a bow. The yoga pose fills you with confidence.
- Stand straight and move your right foot forward.
- Move your left foot away from the body making an angle of 45 degrees but keep it straight.
- Bend the right knee but ensure that the knee does not cross your toes.
- Lower down your body to make your right thigh parallel to the floor.
- Hold an imaginary bow in your arm by curling your finger into the palms and bending the left elbow.
- Hold the archer pose for about 3 to 5 minutes on each side. While holding the pose, you have to fixate your eyes beyond the thumb.
Precautions and Safety Points
- Avoid kundalini yoga poses if you have:
- Problems balancing your body
- Any type of breathing issues
- Pregnant ladies should also avoid kundalini mudras.
- If you have a condition that causes pain in your joint, for example, arthritis, you should perform kundalini yoga for beginners only under the guidance of a yoga expert.
Kundalini mudras can aid you to achieve spiritual enlightenment. Unlike other types of yoga, it includes singing, changing, and other unorthodox types of movements. If you want to get relief from stress, anxiety, and improve your cognitive functioning, you should definitely add kundalini asanas into your daily workout.
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