A Practical Guide to Your Chakras

Perhaps you've heard about the benefits of balancing the chakras but maybe you're not really sure how to get started. So in honor of Chakra Week, we've created a practical guide to these 7 brilliant energy centers of the body - it's a perfect system we all share that we can harness to heal, energize and awaken our power within!


Cristi Christensen, author of the upcoming Chakra Rituals: Awakening the Wild Woman Within, veteran yogi and creator of our newest Chakra Awakening series on Yoga Wake Up explains how working with the chakras frees us to express our authenticity and live a life of power, joy, creativity, and purpose.


"And while these ancient symbols and attributes have become trendy," she says, "few people today really know how to activate their power for deep transformation and healing." With her help, we are changing that. So let's get started!


Chakra 1: Muladhara or Root Chakra


The root chakra is associated with the color red and is located at the base of the tailbone. It represents security, trust, survival and stability. Imbalances make us feel frenzied or unsafe, and manifest as increased anxiety or poor sleep.


Bring into balance with:

  • Standing poses (warrior variations), standing balances, yogi squat, forward folds

  • Using the mantra “Lam” or “I AM”

  • Wearing red

  • Settle into stability and trust in your own being


Chakra 2: Svadhisthana or Sacral Chakra


The sacral chakra is associated with the color orange and is located at the lower back and abdomen. It is the home of creativity, pleasure, movement and gut instincts. Imbalances manifest as lower back pain and sexual dysfunction, for example.


Bring into balance with:

  • Any hip openers, lower abdominal strengtheners and lower back stretches

  • Using the mantra “I am” or “I FEEL”

  • Acknowledging how we feel and not suppressing emotions

  • Trusting your gut instinct


Chakra 3: Manipura or Solar Plexus Chakra


The Solar Plexus chakra is associated with the color yellow, located below the rib cage, and holds feelings of self-worth, self-esteem, courage and ambition. Imbalances manifest as lack of willpower, chronic fatigue, or diabetes.


Bring into balance with:

  • Sun salutation A, any kind of twist or upper abdominal strengthener

  • Using the mantra “Ram” or “I DO”

  • Taking action

  • Sticking to a healthy diet and kicking unhealthy addictions


Chakra 4: Anahata or Heart Chakra

The Heart Chakra is associated with the color green, located at the heart, and is the dwelling place of the soul. It harnesses joy, expansiveness and openness. Imbalances manifest as shortness of breath, shoulder tension and more.


Bring into balance with:

  • Chest openers and backbends

  • Listen to or create music

  • Eat your greens

  • Use the mantra “I am” or “I LOVE”

  • Surround yourself with people who make you feel whole and alive


Chakra 5: Vishuddha or Throat Chakra


The throat chakra is associated with the color turquoise, located in the neck, and is responsible for our communication and self-expression. Imbalances manifest as a stiff jaw, teeth grinding, inability to express ourselves and more.


Bring into balance with:

  • Poses such as fish, shoulder-stand, or puppy

  • Speech, song or mantra

  • Avoid participating in gossip

  • Power poses

  • Use the mantra “I am” or “I SPEAK”


Chakra 6: Ajna or Third Eye Chakra


The third-eye chakra is associated with the color indigo blue, located in the middle of the forehead, and is responsible for intuition, insight and wisdom. Imbalances manifest as a lack of emotional intelligence or creativity, over-complicating and feeling brain-fried.


Bring into balance with:

  • A good night’s sleep or yoga nidra (try out the ones on the Yoga Wake Up app!)

  • Forehead massage

  • Meditation

  • Use the mantra “Sham” or “I SEE"

  • Child’s pose


Chakra 7: Sahasrara or Crown Chakra


The crown chakra is associated with the color violet (or white), located at the top of the head, and is the physical home of our enlightenment. It is our connection to higher consciousness and is the culmination of all other chakras.


Bring into balance with:

  • Headstands or tree pose

  • Use the mantra “Om” or “I UNDERSTAND”

  • Meditation

  • Practicing being present

  • Living in the moment