any people are trying yoga in an attempt to find inner peace, and this movement is growing each day as people discover new forms of yoga. However, with all the types of yoga out there, it can be difficult to find the one that will work for you. You may come across Kundalini Yoga and wonder what exactly it is.
Kundalini Yoga is an ancient form of yoga that uses poses, breathing exercises, and sound to open the chakras of the body, thereby creating peace within the individual. With the belief that the energy in the body is coiled like a snake, Kundalini Yoga aims to unwind this energy.
Kundalini Yoga is a spiritual form of yoga. With all the stresses of modern life, people all over the world are trying to find new ways to release that stress, and Kundalini yoga, while not new, is the answer for many. Read on to discover what Kundalini Yoga is, how it works, and more.
How Is Kundalini Yoga Different?
There are many forms of yoga, and a lot of these forms of yoga, such as Hatha Yoga, focus on the movements of the body. While Kundalini Yoga does have poses associated with its practice, these are not the focus of this modality.
Kundalini Yoga focuses on the spirituality of the practice more than other forms. The main goal behind Kundalini Yoga is to release and unwind the energy in the body, which will lead to both peace and enlightenment. The spirituality of this form of yoga is intrinsically tied with its practice.
Moreover, Kundalini Yoga follows a more rigid outline than other forms of Yoga. While other forms of yoga are more fluid and flexible with how they operate, Kundalini Yoga follows a repetitive pattern. The idea behind this is to open the chakras of the body, which, if done properly over time, will lead to enlightenment.
Kundalini Yoga offers its own set of health benefits. While all yoga shares some benefits, each is unique in its own right. Consider these health benefits of Kundalini Yoga as you research whether it is the right choice for you.
- Practicing Kundalini Yoga will improve your cognitive abilities, such as your memory, over time.
- Like other forms of yoga, this form of yoga will relieve stress. Additionally, it will help relieve feelings of anxiety, which will aid in your reaching a peaceful state.
- Breathing is a large part of this form of yoga, and it can be intensive. This will help build strength in your core.
- The breathing exercises also force you to open your diaphragm, which can help with digestion over time.
Kundalini Yoga is, in short, a spiritual experience, and it is different from other forms of yoga because of this and other elements, such as the focus on breath over poses.
How Does Kundalini Yoga Work?
Kundalini Yoga works to relieve the body of stress while bolstering the nervous system and bringing a sense of profound relaxation. But how exactly does Kundalini Yoga achieve this?
The deep breathing associated with Kundalini Yoga works to bring the body into a vulnerable state. However, this is what you want. When your body is in a vulnerable state, it means the nervous system is honed in and working sharply, which means you will be better suited to handle stress and anxiety.
Moreover, Kundalini Yoga has a specific set of components that are used each time. So, regardless of which pose or practice you decide to try, it will follow the same general pattern. The process is as follows:
- Introductory chant: Each Kundalini Yoga session opens with a chant (mantra). This helps center the individual so that they may enter the full session with a focused mind.
- This is the warmup of the session: During this part of the session, you will practice breathing exercises and may even stretch your spine, which forms a large part of the core teaching of Kundalini Yoga.
- This is the main stage for a Kundalini Yoga session: During the Kriya, you will practice not only breathing exercises, but you will also practice different postures, chants, and meditations. This section can get very intense, so it is critical you speak with an instructor beforehand to know your limits.
- Relaxation period: After the Kriya comes a period of relaxation. Your body will feel very relaxed, and it is important to let this permeate throughout your body for a time.
- Guided meditation: You then will enter a period of guided meditation that will harness the relaxation and center your body and soul.
- Final chant: To finish, you will close with another chant (mantra).
By using this outline, Kundalini Yoga can tap into the chakras of the body. When you “open” your body’s chakras, you are able to find peace, relaxation, and enlightenment.
(If you want to check out some Kundalini Yoga online courses, check out that amazing article!)
Why is Kundalini Yoga Considered Dangerous?
It does not matter what form of yoga you practice. You must always know what your body can and cannot handle. The last thing you want is something negative to happen, which would go against the main purpose of you practicing yoga in the first place.
Everyone is different, and people’s bodies handle Kundalini Yoga differently, too. Kundalini Yoga can be more dangerous than other forms of yoga if you are not careful. This is because Kundalini Yoga releases a lot of energy in the body when done properly. If you reach the peak of Kundalini Yoga, you may experience some of the dangers.
Of course, working closely with a yoga instructor can help avoid the side effects that make Kundalini Yoga dangerous. You must be prepared beforehand. You should not do Kundalini Yoga alone. Some of the dangerous side effects of Kundalini Yoga include:
- With a rush of energy that is gained from practicing Kundalini Yoga, you may suffer from headaches afterward.
- Heart problems: You may suffer from an increased heart rate.
- Fever or chills: You may also find that through the immense release of energy in your body, you begin to suffer from either a fever or chills.
- Heightened sense of fear: You may also begin to fear more than you did prior, which can manifest itself in various ways such as anxiety.
- Heightened sense of paranoia: You may also begin to experience a heightened sense of paranoia, which can affect your daily life.
This is only a sampling of dangers associated with Kundalini Yoga. These side effects come about because the person in question is not prepared for the release of energy in their body. Kundalini Yoga is known as the most powerful and, therefore, the most dangerous form of yoga, so it is advisable to proceed with caution.
If you are looking for a more chill yoga, you might want to look into a yoga nidra script!
3 Examples of Kundalini Yoga Practices and Poses
There are many poses associated with Kundalini Yoga. The most basic poses are great for beginners. However, as you gain experience with Kundalini Yoga, you can increase the intensity of the sessions. This is how you would reach enlightenment.
So, what are some examples of some Kundalini Yoga practices and poses? There are three that are worth looking at to start.
- Breath of Fire
- Should Twist
- Ego Eradicator
These three Kundalini Yoga practices and poses are relatively simple and great for beginners. Each seeks to focus the body and release the energy that is trapped within the spine of the person within their chakras.
Breath of Fire
The Breath of Fire practice in Kundalini Yoga is a powerful breathing exercise that can be used during the Pranayama stage of the session. It is used by many people throughout the world to warm their bodies up and release energy.
The purpose of the Breath of Fire is to strengthen the Solar Plexus Chakra. This is important because this chakra is tied with your determination, which is needed to finish a full session of Kundalini Yoga.
The Breath of Fire is achieved by breathing deliberately and fully. You inhale and exhale repetitively, but as you exhale your stomach is pulled in toward your spine.
This practice can cause you to get dizzy. However, you can refocus yourself by focusing your eyesight upon the top of the eyebrow by looking up gently. A glass of water is good to have nearby if you feel lightheaded.
The shoulder twist is a physical movement tied in with breathing and chanting that is an easy practice to try as you are beginning your journey in Kundalini Yoga. This pose will release tension that is located in your neck and back. Additionally, it will fill your lungs with energy and will revitalize you.
How do you practice the shoulder twist? It is very simple and can be done with the following steps:
- Sit cross-legged and place your fingers on your shoulders. Your left fingers should touch your left shoulder, and your right fingers should touch your right shoulder.
- Your elbows should be parallel with your shoulders. You will then gently twist your torso and shoulders from side to side.
- As you twist, make sure you inhale and exhale. For example, when you twist left you should inhale, and when you twist right you should exhale.
- As you twist you can chant a mantra, such as “Sat Nam.” So, when you twist left, chant “Sat,” and when you twist right, chant “Nam.”
- Make sure that your head is always in line with your spine as you progress through this pose and practice.
- When you are done, after a few minutes or longer, you can take a moment to feel the relaxation before moving on.
The shoulder twist is an excellent addition to any Kundalini Yoga experience because it is great for both beginners and experienced individuals alike.
The Ego Eradicator is a pose that is combined with the Breath of Fire, and it will focus your attention on your third eye. Moreover, it will elevate you. This pose is very popular and for good reason.
To practice the Ego Eradicator, follow these steps:
- Sit cross-legged (easy pose). You want to make sure that you are relaxed as you begin.
- Next, bring your fingertips into your palm where the fingers meet your palm. Keep your fingertips there, but you must extend your thumb.
- With your thumbs extended, point them upward.
- You will then stretch your arms out and over your head at a 60-degree angle. Your arms and thumbs should be stretched and pointed toward the sky.
- You want to focus your thoughts and self toward your third eye.
Once you have done these steps, you will enter the breath of fire. Keep this pose throughout the entire Breath of Fire, which can last for several minutes.
Kundalini Yoga is a powerful form of yoga that will elevate your spiritual essence to new levels. However, it should be done with an instructor because of the dangers present. This form of yoga releases an immense amount of energy in the body that can be too much for some people.
This should not deter you from trying Kundalini Yoga. There is a reason it is popular, and it is because it is powerful and able to bring lasting peace to those who practice it.
(If you happen to fall in love with Kundalini Yoga, you might want to consider Kundalini Yoga teacher training online!)