YOGA POSE + FOCUS: 08.28 – 09.03.23

“The only way to find your voice is to use it.” — Jen Mueller

Weekly Focus: Vishuddha (Throat Chakra)

Vishuddha means “pure” or “purification.” It is the fifth chakra located in the throat associated with the color blue. Our center of voice, our truth, our ability to speak up + to speak out.  

There is so much to hear + take-in during Summer, nature never lacking it’s summer song. Can we find our own summer song as we connect to Vishuddha? The fifth chakra, Vishuddha, is the first of the three spiritual chakras. To be open + aligned in the fifth chakra is to speak, listen, and express yourself from a higher form of communication. It is not easy to speak + to be heard amongst so much noise. In order to communicate from a place of authenticity, we must find a deep connection with the Self. In turn, if we wish to be heard, it is important to lend that same respect to those around us. Communication runs in two directions. Vishuddha is not only about speaking your own authentic truth, but proving the space for others to speak authentically and to be heard. Perhaps this week we practice opening vishuddha by taking an engaging walk with nature. No earbuds, no music no podcasts, just our own self + the song of summer. How can this practice help transform our communication with those around us?

Passive Pose: Neck Stretches

Vishuddha governs the anatomical regions of the thyroid, parathyroid, jaw, neck, mouth, tongue, and larynx. Taking some stretches of the neck can help to open up + activate this chakra. These are positions you can easily take during the middle of the day when you need a moment to yourself, and perhaps when working to gain the confidence to share your voice. Before a big meeting or presentation, a difficult conversation — help prepare yourself with these simple stretches of the throat and neck:

  • Come to any seated position that feels comfortable.
  • Allow your right ear to drop towards your right shoulder. Pause + breathe. Bring your right hand to gentle rest atop the side of the ahead. Imagine length from ear to shoulder.
  • Drop your right hand down by your side. Turn your chin down towards the right collarbone. Pause + breathe. Try moving the left arm forwards + backwards slightly to enhance the stretch.
  • Gentle draw your chin through the center of your chest and lift up to parallel on an inhale. Take a few breaths here before repeating on your second side.

Active Pose: Sarvangasana (shoulder stand)

Shoulder stand opens the back of the neck — because our chakra energy centers align not only along the front of the body, but circumnavigating the body, we take this pose as another way to activate Vishuddha. From a reclined position, this inversion stacks the hips over the shoulders with the hands supporting the low back. You can use a bit of moment to lift the hips from the ground and catch your seat with your hands. Start to walk that hands closer to the upper back + shoulders, as the hips begin to lift. Lift as high as you can, then straighten the legs. Keep the hands supporting the back. Squeeze the legs together and make the strong to keep them light. Be sure to keep your gaze straight up, never turning side to side! When you are ready to come down, bend the knees and slowly roll down with the hands working like brakes, dropping one vertebrae at a time.