Kundalini yoga is a kind of yoga that is actually a blend of both, spiritual as well as physical practices and it incorporates movements of several body parts, meditation, dynamic breathing techniques, as well as the mantra chanting. The primary goal of kundalini yoga is to build physical strength and also improve consciousness. Let us read below to know more about Kundalini yoga and also about its benefits.
What Is Kundalini Yoga?
Kundalini yoga is a very old art and science which deals with the transformation as well as expansion of consciousness, awakening as well as raising of the Kundalini energy right up your spine via energy centers of the body, known as the Chakras. Kundalini yoga includes the yoga practices such as chanting of mantras, yoga kriyas or yoga poses, and meditation along with proper breathing techniques.
Kundalini is actually the term that is used for “a spiritual energy or the life force situated at the base of your spine.”, and is conceptualized as a coiled-up serpent. Performing kundalini yoga every day helps in arousing the sleeping Kundalini shakti from the coiled-up serpent like base via the six chakras and then penetrating the crown chakra or the 7th chakra. This energy travels along the ida or left nadi, pingala or the right nadi, central or the Sushumna nadi; the primary channels of pranic energy in our body. (1)
It must be however, noted that at times Kundalini yoga is known as the most dangerous form of yoga, as it involves the subtle energies. (2) It is always important to be done under the guidance and supervision of a specialized kundalini yoga master.
Kundalini Yoga Mantra: Tuning In With Chanting Of Mantra
All the classes of Kundalini yoga begins with something called “Tuning in”, that is a chant to be recited in a seated posture and hands at the center of the heart, and closed eyes. The mantra chanting usually means to bow down to the truth that is within you.
Some Kundalini Yoga Poses: Kundalini Kriyas Or Practices For Enhancing Energy, Strength And Body
Lotus Pose Or Padmasana:
Lotus pose, also known as Padmasana is generally used as a starter pose while doing the yoga asanas. This is because it places your body in a position that is conducive to meditation as well as breathing. Simultaneously, it even conditions your body to maintain the right posture, which is specifically required while doing any yoga move.
Follow the mentioned steps to perform this yoga move:
- Sit on yoga mat with a cross-legged posture.
- Keep the back absolutely straight and allow the hands to fall on your lap as you meditate and maintain a steady kind of breathing pattern.
NOTE: Make sure not to do lotus pose if you feel tensed in your knees.
Kundalini Yoga Frog:
Some poses of kundalini yoga are quite unique. One of the pose is Kundalini yoga frog pose. This is an excellent yoga pose for enhancing energy along with vitality, because it helps in moving the energy from the first 3 chakras of the body up in the spine.
Follow the steps to perform the Kundalini yoga frog.
- Stand up absolutely straight and tall and place the heels together with the toes turned out.
- Then, lower to a squat position, while raising the heels of the floor, however, still keeping them very much together.
- Place the fingertips on the floor right in front of you and keep your knees well aligned over the toes.
- Inhale or breathe in as you rise up the hips towards the ceiling and straighten the legs.
- Exhale or breathe out and come back to the squat position.
Archer pose in Kundalini yoga is another classic pose. This yoga move helps in developing the navel center, the strength of your will, and also your courage. Archer pose builds your radiant body, which in turn attracts the opportunity along with prosperity into the life.
Below are some of the steps you need to know for performing Archer pose in Kundalini yoga.
- Step one of your foot; say the right one, forward with your toes facing front and the other foot or the left foot back, say about 2-3 feet away from the front foot. Turn the back foot 45 degrees by keeping your heels back and the toes forwards.
- Bend the knee of your front foot and curl the fingers into your palms, with the thumbs up.
- Pull the left elbow back as if you are pulling the bow and an arrow, with your left fist right near your left shoulder and your right arm well extended forward, kept parallel to the floor.
- Make sure you focus your gaze much beyond your right thumb to the infinity.
Tree Pose Or Vrikshasana:
Tree pose or vrikshasana is one yoga pose that helps in building physical health and also mental. It teaches us concentration and also focus as one tries to balance the body weight on one leg.
Follow the steps to perform this kundalini yoga.
- Begin the pose by standing tall and keeping your arms at your sides.
- Bend one leg and place the foot of the bent leg against the thigh of the opposite leg.
- You can either put both your hands together right in front of the chest while you balance in one leg, or can raise them over your head by joining your palms together.
Cat-Cow Pose Or Marjarasana- Bidalasana:
This yoga pose is composed of two poses; however it is referred to as one pose as they are always done together. This pose involves the following steps.
- Get on all the fours by keeping your knees at hip-width distance.
- Breathe in and do the cow pose and lift the head and your chest up and allow your stomach to drop.
- Breathe out, and perform the cat pose, where you stretch the back upwards and get the chin towards your chest.
Cobra Pose Or Bhujangasana:
Cobra pose or bhujangasana is an excellent stretching pose that stretches your back, strengthens your arm muscles, and relieves any pain in the lower back.
Follow the below mentioned steps to perform this yoga.
- Lie on your stomach by keeping your shins and legs touching the floor or the yoga mat, and arms kept close to the sides.
- Bend the elbows and place your hands flat on the floor just near the shoulders.
- Now, using the support of your arms, lift up your upper body in a way that the back forms an arch, and lift up your head towards the ceiling.
Gurupranam is another yoga pose that is usually done for activation of the third eye or the sixth chakra.
Follow the steps to perform this asana.
- Sit on your heels.
- Get your torso over your thighs and place your forehead on the floor.
- Extend your hands right in front of you on the floor in prayers.
This is another kundalini yoga asana. It is in fact a complete kundalini yoga move for all the seven chakras of the body. It is very powerful and an excellent yoga practice and doing this every day for about 40 days will have a significant effect on the chakra functioning. Sat kriya specifically works on awakening the Kundalini energy and also in helping it to move up the spine via your body’s chakra system.
Follow the steps to perform this kundalini yoga.
- Sit on your heels and stretch your arms over your head by keeping your elbows straight, and touching your ears.
- Interlace all your fingers, except the index finger that needs to be extended.
- Women should cross their left thumb over the right thumb, while men must cross the right thumb over their left thumb.
- You now need to chant “Sa Ta Na Ma”, and as you chant Sata, pull in your navel, while as you chant Nama; release your navel. Keep your eyes closed while doing this.
Corpse Pose Or Savasana:
Corpse pose, also known as Savasana is usually used to end any yoga session. This is because of its restorative nature. This pose involves lying on the back by keeping arms and legs on the ground. This pose might look simple but it is in fact one of the most challenging poses, since it requires stillness, silence and total relaxation, while performing this.
Kundalini Mantra Meditation: SA TA NA MA For Balancing Your Mind
Kundalini mantra meditation is done is a seated position. The meditation when done while whispering of some mantras, help in balancing your mind and helps in developing the consciousness. Usually the sounds of mantra which are to be whispered while meditating are, SA- meaning Infinity, TA- meaning life, NA- meaning death or Transformation, MA- Meaning rebirth.
For doing this meditation sit in a cross-legged posture, extend out your arms with your palms facing down and whisper “SA”. Then move straight your arms alongside of ears while your palms facing in and whisper “TA”. Next, move your arms straight out to your side, palms facing down and middle fingers in the line along with the shoulders and whisper NA”. Finally bring your arms straight back down and whisper “MA”?
What Are The Benefits Of Kundalini Yoga?
While performing Kundalini yoga is a dedicated manner, one builds the nervous system in a way to handle and integrate the potential life force energy that is inherent to the human body.
As per a study of 2018, from the International Journal of Yoga Therapy, it is explained that Kundalini yoga might help in reducing the symptoms of anxiety disorders like the generalized anxiety disorder, help in soothing the feeling of edginess and restlessness. (3)
Apart from this, another study conducted in 2017, which helped 26 people going for Kundalini yoga classes, for about 3 months, it was found that practicing such a kind of yoga can actually assist in reducing the levels of cortisol and also reduce stress. (4)
There is also a few researches which suggest that this type of yoga might also help in preventing cognitive decline and also help in easing symptoms of depression. (5)
So, there are a lot of positive effects of Kundalini yoga on your mental health and this can especially help in improving our way of living and also help in the Kundalini awakening. The various yoga poses, the meditation, mantra chantings, in Kundalini yoga, has been designed to raise the awareness in the complete body and help in improving your physical postures, your health, as well as your mind or mental health. It helps in getting deep awareness and a kind of transformation in the person practicing Kundalini yoga regularly. Let us look at some of the benefits of Kundalini yoga, in the following paragraphs.
Kundalini Yoga Clears The Blockages In Your Energy Field:
One of the finest benefits of Kundalini yoga is it clears any kind of blockages in the body’s energy field. Many of us feel that we have done a lot for creating the lives that we want. However; we sometimes still feel stuck. Kundalini yoga is a miracle that makes this impossible thing quite possible and clears any energy blockage and we attract to more of gratitude in our lives.
It Quiets Your Mind:
Kundalini yoga also helps in quieting the mind and the thoughts which usually keep us stuck, fearful, and insecure, so that our soul gets flourish. It helps in letting go of any of our past pain and the fear of future by making us live and remain aligned with our present moment.
The breathing practice and sacred mantras, meditation or stillness, and yoga movements in Kundalini yoga, all together are absolutely wonderful at keeping our mind quite and calm.
You Attain Confidence By Doing Kundalini Yoga:
One of the best benefits of Kundalini yoga is you attain confidence. You start recognizing your own worth. The confidence that grown in you arises from within. You start feeling really worthy and you can manifest your deepest dreams and desire.
Kundalini Yoga Helps You Connect With The Divine:
Connecting with the divine is one more benefit of Kundalini yoga. This kind of yoga practice helps in letting go and live without attachment. Through Kundalini yoga, we start working on our mind, body, and soul in a way that integrates oneness with the divine or the universe. This in turn helps us to feel a greater connection to higher realms. We start giving and receiving things energetically.
You Gain Strength And Resilience Through Kundalini Yoga:
Kundalini yoga helps in improving our strength which comes not from our muscles, but from the body’s core energy. By practicing Kundalini yoga regularly, we start developing profound core strength and this also helps in gaining resilience.
You Remain Protected From Negativity By Doing Kundalini Yoga:
Kundalini yoga helps in expanding our electromagnetic field or the aura, which is the energy field surrounding us and that make us alert to various positive and negative influences in the environment. If one has a weak aura, negative influences can get attracted to the person. However, a strong positive aura can protect one from several negative influences of the environment.
You Can Attain Emotional Balance And A Neutral Mind:
As Kundalini yoga strengthens our nervous system, purifies our blood, balances the body’s glands, and cleans out subconscious patterns of thoughts. This in turns helps you in getting a greater awareness and also capability to choose your thoughts and ways on how you respond to them. It helps in attaining emotional balance and also offers you a neutral mind.
You Get Deep Relaxation That Actually Helps In Healing:
Kundalini yoga is known to strengthen and also balance our nervous system. We are susceptible to stress when the nervous system of our body is weak. However, as we perform Kundalini yoga, there is a deep relaxation and there is a healing in not only the nervous system but also in the entire body. By practicing Kundalini yoga regularly, you can attain more of stamina to face the stress of every day.
Kundalini Yoga Is A Good Workout:
Kundalini yoga might not improve the body flexibility and strength, like any other yoga types; however, it is still a great workout as it has got unique variations of some popular poses of yoga that actually challenges the body in several new ways. So, practicing Kundalini yoga every day can also make you fit, strong and flexible.
So, above we talked about the Kundalini Yoga, knew some of the kundalini yoga poses and also came across some of the benefits of kundalini yoga. If you are willing to begin this yoga kriya for your benefit then it is always essential to find out an expert yoga specialist or a yoga master who can guide you in the right way while performing the various asanas of kundalini yoga.