Kundalini Yoga is a form of yoga that involves chanting, breathing exercises and repetitive postures. It is fun and helps you get into total relaxation mode.
Kundalini yoga is a perfect yoga modality if you want to achieve maximum relaxation. Its purpose is to activate the Kundalini or Shakti energy, a spiritual energy said to be located at the base of the spine. When you awaken this energy, it improves your consciousness and helps you overcome your ego. This practice is also known as “yoga of consciousness”.
Kundalini yoga is more spiritual than other types of yoga. While other types of yoga flow with the breath, Kundalini Yoga combines chanting, movements and breathing in specific patterns. The goal is to promote spiritual enlightenment and achieve complete relaxation.
There are several scientifically proven benefits of Kundalini Yoga. It can help reduce stress and anxiety, improve cognitive abilities, and increase self-awareness and self-esteem. Although it is practiced worldwide, its origin is unknown, although the concept of Kundalini energy has been known for centuries and is mentioned in ancient Vedic texts as early as 1000 BC.
What is Kundalini Yoga?
It also refers to a coiled snake. And according to practitioners, Kundalini energy is like this coiled snake: it sits at the base of the spine, dormant and unawakened. It is practiced to activate this energy along the spine.
It is believed that when this energy increases, it supports the balance of the different chakras and contributes to your spiritual well-being. Compared to other forms of yoga, this is a more spiritual practice. Of course, physical movements are part of it, but they are not the main focus.
This makes it a different modality than Hatha or Vinyasa yoga, for example, which are all about physical postures. Kundalini yoga is also more precise and repetitive. While other types of yoga flow with the breath, Kundalini Yoga combines chanting, movements and breathing in specific patterns.
Breathing, Mantras, Kriyas and Mudras
Kundalini Yoga consists of six main phases that are performed in a specific order. First, there is the opening chant with which each class begins and which is also called attunement. This is followed by breathing exercises called pranayama and sometimes movements to stretch the spine. The goal of pranayama is to practice breath control.
Then follows the kriya, a sequence of postures, pranayama, mudras (hand positions), sounds and meditation. The duration and intensity of the kriya depends on the teacher. This is followed by the relaxation phase, where the body and mind can absorb the effects of a kriya, and meditation to cultivate awareness. The session ends with a final chant.
What are the benefits?
Kundalini Yoga has several scientifically proven benefits. Like other forms of yoga, it can help relieve stress and anxiety. Those who practice Kundalini Yoga experience immediate stress relief, and this effect lasts for three months.
It also improves your leadership skills in the short and long term. These include skills such as logical thinking, problem-solving, and cognitive flexibility. In addition to these significant cognitive improvements, it helps you experience fewer symptoms of depression.
Kundalini yoga can improve body awareness and self-acceptance. So it can help treat eating disorders by improving self-awareness and self-esteem. And it is also believed that with the awakening of Kundalini energy, one becomes more spiritually connected to oneself and others.