Yoga is a holistic practice that provides us with practices for the mind, body and soul. Through the breath, a powerful tool we all have, we can work on healing ourselves, strengthening the body and mind, and truly living our best lives. Yoga philosophy has immense knowledge that we can gain from when understood and adapted in the right way. The best online yoga classes include nuggets of this knowledge in their sessions. In this article, we will explore one such topic, the Throat Chakra.
Chakras are spinning wheels of energy throughout the body. They are responsible for allowing energy to flow freely across the body. The Chakras are seven in number, starting at the base of the spine and going to the top of the head. Each of them correspond to specific body parts and organs. The Throat Chakra, is located at the base of the throat, at the center of the larynx and is responsible for communication, self-expression and the ability to speak our inner truth. It is associated with the Pharyngeal plexus and the Thymus gland.
What is the Throat Chakra Associated with?
An open and activated Throat Chakra aids us in communication, creativity and self-expression. It is known as Vishudhi or Vishudha, which means pure or purification. When blocked, one might find it hard to communicate effectively. There might be feelings of fear, difficulty expressing thoughts and emotions, anxiousness about speaking or communication or a feeling or refusing to speak. Physically, one might have a raspy throat, chronic sore throat, mouth ulcers, gum diseases, laryngitis and thyroid imbalances. The Throat Chakra is that center that allows us to speak our inner, real truth. We feel confident communicating that inner truth to the outside world. The Beej Mantra for the Throat Chakra is HAM.
Did you know the Kundalini is a powerful dormant energy that lies coiled up in the shape of a serpent at the base of the spine? The Kundalini energy makes its way upwards through the chakras leading to an incredible spiritual awakening. Read more about it here - The Incredible Kindalini Energy
What are the characteristics of the Throat Chakra?
The Ether or Space Element
The Throat Chakra is all about space. It is about the essence of emptiness within which our true selves exist. And being a point of communication, it allows us to express our true state of being. Emotions can expand here when there is space and freedom. Many yoga postures and even basic exercises allow us to release stiffness and tightness from the region, enabling us to communicate effectively.
The Color Blue
The Throat Chakra is associated with the color blue. This point is responsible for sound and resonance. It is associated with the power of speaking the truth. Blue is also a cooler shade of colors. It allows the body and mind to experience stillness. It represents a pure mind that is uncluttered from any negative thought Activating this Chakra through anything blue such as blue crystal, being by the water, wearing a necklace with gems like lapis and turquoise will help transform the energy from this point into the right communication for you.
A lotus of sixteen petals represents the Throat Chakra, signifying purity, growth, communication and expression.
How to balance the Throat Chakra?
A blocked and imbalanced throat chakra causes trouble with communicating. We stop listening to our inner self and to those around us. Our loved ones may not be able to understand us or the feelings of loneliness around us. A blocked Throat Chakra causes hesitation in expressing emotions, lacking the words to express ourselves, misunderstandings and miscommunications with those around us, aggressive behavior, negative thoughts and words, among others. A sore throat, fluctuations in hormone levels, imbalances in the thyroid gland, pain or stiffness in the neck are physical signs of a blocked Throat Chakra.
Balancing and activating your Throat Chakra allows you to embrace who you really are, express your true self and channel pure, positive energy.
Yoga poses to balance the Throat Chakra
One of the best ways to keep the Throat Chakra activated and balanced is with regular yoga practice. You can do this by joining an in-person or online yoga class with certified yoga teachers as they will always include yoga poses that will balance and activate the Throat Chakra. Sitting in the right posture and keeping your neck in line with your spine to avoid neck strain and hyperextension is also helpful. A few yoga poses that are helpful are the Fish Pose, Camel Pose, Plow Pose and Shoulder Stand. Neck stretches such as rotating the neck clockwise and anti-clockwise, moving the neck up and down, and side-to-side are also helpful. This releases tension and opens up tight muscles around the neck and throat region.
Meditation and Breathing Exercises for the Throat Chakra
Meditating on the Beej Mantra HAM is an effective way to activate the Throat Chakra. Since this Chakra is also associated with sound, meditating to the Beej mantra is a wonderful way to infuse the body with energy. There are guided meditations you can access or join a live online meditation class where you can practice with a certified yoga teacher. You can also meditate on the Lotus symbol with sixteen petals. Breathing exercises, like Ujjayi Breathing (Oceans breath) are helpful in releasing toxins trapped in the throat area. This will release stress that is blocking the Chakra. In fact, breath is the most effective way to heal the Throat Chakra.
Affirmations for the Throat Chakra
Being associated with communication, repeating positive affirmations such as ‘I communicate with confidence and ease’, ‘I am balanced in speaking and listening’, ‘I am an active listener’, ‘I hear and speak my inner truth’, and ‘I express myself freely and creatively’, among others will activate the Throat Chakra, installing open and authentic communication. Developing the habit of journaling is also a great way to express your inner-self and communicate freely.
Other tips to balance the Throat Chakra
As mentioned above, using stones in the blue shade will unblock and balance the Throat Chakra. You can wear them around your neck, carry them in your bag or place them on your desk. The energy will help keep the balance going. As Vishudha means purity, purifying the body and mind regularly through various cleansing practices or ‘Shat Kriyas’ will help you remove toxins and blockages caused by air and food. Certain foods such as fruits like apples and oranges are helpful. Salt, ginger, herbal tea, coconut water and lemongrass are also helpful. Reduce the intake of sugar and refined foods.
While this might sound like a lot to do, living a healthy lifestyle and attending regular live yoga classes are the best way to stay balanced and ensure energy is free-flowing. A stimulated Throat Chakra or Vishuddha Chakra can be very useful in easing your communication, expression of emotions and in maintaining relationships. It can help in your personal and professional life by improving clarity, confidence and focus. When you start experiencing heightened clarity in thoughts and communication, your inner voice expresses itself, leading to a more authentic version of you.