Beginner’s Guide to the Chakras, Part One

Stemming from the Hindu tradition, chakras are identified as energy centers that are located throughout the human body. The word chakra is Sanskrit meaning “wheel.” Chakras can be thought of as energetic spinning wheels in the body.

There are seven main chakras. They are located along the spine from the base to the crown of the head. Each one corresponds with an area of the body, a natural element, color wavelength and sound vibration.

When our chakras are out of balance due to either excess energy or a clog in the flow, we may suffer from emotional discomfort, physical ailments or social and psychological problems. When they are in balance within themselves and their relationship to the other chakras, we feel light, full of positive energy and at ease in every aspect of our lives.

The following is a guide to the first three chakras and what you can do to keep them in balance.
1st Chakra

Sanskrit name: Muladhara
English name: meaning “root”
Location: base of the spine
Associated body parts: hips, legs and feet
Color: red
Element: earth
Sound vibration: LAM

  • Governs sense of security
  • When your root chakra is out of balance you will not feel grounded or stable, have knee issues or foot problems.
  • Yoga poses such as warrior I and II, chair pose and lotus pose help to open and balance the root chakra.

2nd Chakra

Sanskrit name: Svadhisthana
English name: meaning “sweetness”
Location: sacral spine, tailbone
Associated body parts: hips, lower abdomen and reproductive organs
Color: orange
Element: water
Sound vibration: VAM

  • Governs sense of creativity
  • When your second chakra is out of balance you may feel bored and uninspired, have lower back issues or experience sexual dysfunction.
  • Yoga poses such as reclined bound angle pose, bridge pose and the seated wide-angle forward bend help to open and balance the second chakra.

3rd Chakra

Sanskrit name: Manipura
English name: meaning “city of jewels”
Location: solar plexus
Associated body parts: stomach, intestines and navel
Color: yellow
Element: fire
Sound vibration: RAM

  • Governs sense of empowerment, digestion and “gut feelings”
  • When your third chakra is out of balance you may feel intimidated, addicted to power or suffer from irritable bowel syndrome.
  • Yoga poses that work the core such as boat pose and locust pose, plus the yogic action of uddiyana bandha help to open and balance the third chakra.

This concludes part one of the beginner’s guide to the chakras. Part two consists of the next four chakras, their meanings, and what you can do to keep them in balance.

Also Read:

Yoga for a Strong, Happy and Healthy Core

Yoga vs. Pilates: What’s the Difference?

The Most Popular Yoga Poses


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