Welcome back for another Yoga Pose of the Week with Jessie Dwiggins! This week’s pose, Boat, will ignite your core for both strength and vitality as you energize your navel chakra.
We’re just warming up with our conversation about the Chakras, literally. The third chakra, located two inches above the navel, is all about fire. This chakra is associated with self-esteem, warrior energy, and the power of transformation. It’s spirited influence is responsible for our ‘get-up-and-go’ attitude that allows us to take risks and to own our life and our choices. When the navel chakra is out of whack and weak, we lack confidence, feel like an underdog, and may have eating and digestive problems.
How does it get off balance? By not paying attention to our bodies’ natural energy levels and giving it what it needs. Oftentimes when we’re tired, we reach for caffeine or sugar, some type of artificial energy, when what we actually need is rest and relaxation. Once we’re wired, we turn to overeating or other substances to slow us down. This cycle, repeated, creates navel chakra imbalance.
Balance Your Navel Chakra with Boat Pose
When you feel disempowered or in need of re-energizing, your navel chakra needs a little attention. Boat pose will fan your inner flames of vitality by turning on your core muscles. You’ll flex the physical muscles of your core and also the power muscles of your navel chakra. Once you start paying attention to your core muscles, it’s easier to feel sensations like hunger and it will become effortless to listen to what your body requires for actual nourishment. This leads to gains in confidence and self-esteem. When you know what your body really needs and you respond accordingly, you’ll get a taste of your true personal power.
Strike a Pose: How To
1. Sit on the floor with your legs in front of you, knees bent. Put some padding under your sit bones.
2. Grasp behind your thighs, just above the back of the knees, and lift your breastbone as you inhale.
3. Lean back slightly. Sit back behind the sit bones.
4. Exhale and lift your feet off the floor so the shinbones are parallel to the floor.
5. Extend your arms alongside your legs, parallel to the floor. Spread your shoulder blades and soften your shoulders away from your ears.
6. Balance on the “tripod” of your two sitting bones and tailbone.
7. Straighten your legs so the thighs are angled about 45 degrees relative to the floor.
8. Curl your pubic bone toward your navel, making sure your back doesn’t round.
9. Breathe deeply. At the end of each exhale; pull the low belly muscles in, keeping the low belly firm, but not hard.
10. Hold for 10-20 seconds. Gradually increase the time in the pose to 1 minute.
11. To come out of the pose, grasp behind the upper thighs, bend your knees, lower the legs, and sit upright.
If you’re low back injured or just starting out, keep your knees bent or feet on the floor. You’ll still feel the core fire up.
Not enough time for boat? The navel chakra fire can be stoked by taking deep, belly breaths. Put your hands just above your navel. Relax the belly and deepen your breath. Feel your abdomen expand as you breathe in. Feel your navel draw back toward the spine as you breathe out. Do this ten times. It will create heat, tap you in to your intuition, and boost your confidence.
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