The root chakra is called Mooladhara in Sanskrit, which means “root place,” it is the energy centre that relates to our relationship with the foundations in life, specifically the physical and material world.
Stability, security and grounding come from Mooladhara, so how we perceive our home, our finances, our job, our belongings, our family, our physical bodies, and our environment all relates to this energy centre.
Bija Mantra (Seed Mantra): LAM
Location: Just below and in front of the tailbone
Trigger Point: Nose tip
Key Words: Foundation, Grounding, Stability
Yoga Poses for the Root Chakra
The following three poses can all help to activate, balance, or soothe (depending on what we need) the root chakra.
1. Warrior II (Virabhadrasana II)
Take a wide stance facing the long edge of your mat with your right toes facing forward 90 degrees, back toes turned forward slightly so you can press the outside edge of that back foot into the mat. Lift up through the inner arches so you don’t collapse your feet.
You still want to feel the energetic connection going down in to the earth from the soles of your feet. Bend the right knee so it’s heading toward or over the ankle (not in front of it) and lovingly encourage the knee towards the little toe side of the foot.
Arms are out wide at shoulder height here, palms facedown. Take your gaze forward, just in front of your middle fingertip. Take care not to lean too far forward or back. Shoulders are aligned over the hips and the spine is long.
Chakra Tip: Visualise an earthy red colour at the base of your tailbone/pelvic floor area as you hold the pose.
2. Wide-Legged Seated Forward Bend (Upavistha Konasana)
Seated on the floor, take the legs wide to a point that feels manageable (i.e. don’t force yourself to do 180-degree splits!). If your pelvis is tilting back, you can sit on a folded blanket or block, feeling the pubic bone moving forward towards the ground.
Legs are active here, toes flexed and facing up towards the sky. Less flexible yogis will have hands by the hips, working towards the pelvis moving forward.
More flexible yogis can take the arms out in front and aim the navel in the direction of the ground (but not being attached to it having to get there). Keep length in the spine and let the breath relax the muscles of the inner thighs and groin.
Chakra Tip: Take your awareness to the nose tip, which is the physical trigger point for the root chakra, and focus on this space for several breaths.
3. Easy Pose (Sukhasana)
Take a comfortable cross-legged pose so that both sit-bones are evenly grounding down into the earth. As with the previous pose, if your pelvis is tilting back, you can place a block or blanket underneath your seat.
Feel the spine coming up out of the pelvis, you can visualise a cord attached to your crown, gently drawing you up to create length. Hands rest on the knees here, palms facing up or down and lightly touching thumb and forefinger of each hand.
Make sure there is no tension around the neck and shoulders.
Chakra Tip: Feel the energetic connection between your tailbone and the earth beneath you. You can feel as though that connection goes all the way to the earth’s core.
When Mooladhara energy is flowing in a balanced way, we feel connected to the earth, secure in our physical body, and we enjoy a balanced relationship with the material world in that we’re not so attached to it that we can’t evolve spiritually.
And do you know what, if you’re not that spiritually inclined, simply having more awareness of this aspect of yourself can help you feel more grounded and secure in everyday life.