by Jolynn McFerren
I love our Yoga Teacher Training program, and the lovely men & women who have been a part of it. Anvia Sheldon, Ruth Zito, and I wrote it 4 years ago, it continues to evolve, and we now have our third class graduating in June of 2019. It is a program structured around the seven chakras. A chakra is a wheel of energy and we have TONS of them whirling around our bodies, but for our purposes, we focus on 7 that run along our spine, or sushumna, the central channel in our bodies.
In order from bottom to top, and our order for yoga teacher training:
- Root, Muladhara, Red, Earth: legs, feet, bones, large intestine
- Sacral, Svadhisthana, Orange, Water: hips, sacrum, abdomen, sex organs
- Solar Plexus, Manipura, Yellow, Fire: ribs, adrenal glands, digestive organs
- Heart, Anahata, Emerald Green, Air: chest, lungs, diaphragm, shoulder blades, heart, respiratory system
- Throat, Visshudha, Sky Blue, sound/ether: shoulders, neck throat, tongue, mouth, ears
- Third Eye, Ajna, Indigo, light: eyes, forehead, pineal gland
- Crown, Sahasrara, White, consciousness/thought: head, brain, nervous system
There is so much to learn about our chakra system, and we base much of our chakra instruction on a text by Anodea Judith called Chakra Yoga (Llewellyn Publications, Woodbury, MN, 2015). It’s been such a productive way to structure our training, organizing the anatomy, personal readings, writing, pranayama, and meditations around this system. It just makes so much sense! Today I taught a morning class based on balancing these 7 energies to start the week off right. Enjoy!
- Begin on your back
- Root: Hug knees to chest; supine twist each side; rise to child pose; forward fold; mountain pose; low lunge; lizard pose each side—stay low and focus your awareness on the color red and earth
- Sacral: cat & cow from table; warrior 2–turn your gaze out over your front hand; from warrior 2 straighten legs and reach arms up; move between the two for 3 rounds; switch sides; keep your movement fluid and watery
- Solar plexus: high lunge; prayer twist over front thigh; chair pose between sides; crow; boat; kapbalabhati—skull shining breath
- Heart: from your belly—sphinx, locust; rise to kneeling—camel pose
- Throat: bridge supported with block under sacrum; float feet to the sky for supported shoulder stand
- Third eye: dolphin pose with block under the bridge of your nose—or an inversion of your choice!
- Crown: meditation/corpse pose with a 4 count breath on inhale and exhale
Voila! Balanced and ready to meet the new week! Namaste.
(for more information and dates on our 2019-2020 program, check out the Teacher Training link on our site. www.namasteyogastudio.net)