If you feel like you repel other people, try balancing your solar plexus chakra. The solar plexus chakra, also known as Manipura, is a hub of sorts for personality traits. In my research, they call it “personal power” and indicate that this is where primal feelings such as joy and anger arise.
This all may be true, but my perception is that this third chakra is the source for how you interact with people. Unlike our previous two chakras, which are more about internal thoughts and feelings, this chakra is about how you conduct yourself and the impact of that on other people.
But, before we go any further, let’s talk about chakras. Perhaps you’ve seen a picture of a seated person with a rainbow of dots up their spine to their forehead. These are the chakras. Although some people may argue that there are more than 7 chakras, everyone agrees that there are at least 7. See the picture below for the approximate location of the chakras.
In English, chakra translates to “wheel.” All of these “wheels” work together to transfer energy, thoughts, feelings, and impulses through your body. The chakras are truly a complex system. To truly understand each of them and how they work would require study far above and beyond what this article offers.
Chakras are first mentioned in 200 B.C. in Pantanjali’s Yoga Sutras. Despite the large quantity of years to study the chakras, it hasn’t been until relatively recently that scientific studies have started to validate the ancient claims. (Here’s a link to “Scientists Quantify and Graphically Chart Alignment of Human Chakras in Various Emotional States” if you’re interested in reading more on that.)
Since we all have 7 chakras, each chakra is important to us for various reasons. We may not universally feel each chakra in the same way. For example, if a friend and I both have our solar plexus chakras misaligned, we may experience different feelings and thoughts. However, we can participate in the same solar plexus chakra-aligning practice and both receive benefit in our respective areas.
Solar Plexus Chakra Attributes
Each chakra has its own attributes and associations. Here is a quick breakdown of the solar plexus chakra.
- Color: Yellow
- Element: Fire
- Sense: Sight
- Location: The solar plexus or the mouth of the stomach
- Functions: Personal power, Will, Assertion
Signs of Solar Plexus Chakra Imbalance
You may want to balance your solar plexus chakra if you feel:
- insensitive to others.
Of course, with these signs of imbalance, you may not actually notice that you are being this way. Unlike our previous two chakras, these signs are visible in our interactions with others, as opposed to our reflections within. It is more likely that someone will have to tell you that you’re being this way and less likely that you will observe your own behavior.
Solar Plexus Chakra Balancing
Core work and twists are the best way to create a solar plexus chakra balancing practice. Remember, “core” means that you need to work more than just your abs. Find poses that target your abs, back, glutes, and adductors.
In about 75% of the population, there is a direct connection between the abdominals and the adductors. For this portion of the population, when the adductors work, they will quickly ask the abdominals to work, too. If you feel like your abdominals may or may not be working correctly, make sure to engage your adductors first when you do a core challenging pose. Two great poses to find adductor engagement are Navasana and Crow pose.
All yoga twists are appropriate for solar plexus chakra alignment. You should, however, be gentle in particular on any twists that may happen in the beginning of your practice when you may still be relatively cold. I would recommend you get yourself nice and warm with your core work before going into any deep or serious twists to prevent potential back injury.
If you’re wanting a specific practice to balance your solar plexus chakra, I recommend reading Yoga Sequencing by Mark Stephens. This book contains many sequences, not just those that pertain to balancing the chakras, and information about how to construct your own yoga sequences.
Also, I highly recommend Jo Ann Staugaard-Jones’s book The Vital Psoas Muscle for more information about the first three chakras. Since the psoas only impacts the first three chakras, they are the only ones specifically explained in this book. However, if you want information about how a junky psoas impacts your life and your first three chakras, this is a great read.
I also really enjoy the Yoga Toolbox for Teachers and Students by Integrative Yoga Therapy. This is a binder of laminated pages that thoroughly explain many basic yoga poses. One of the perks of practicing yoga with these pages is that the activated chakras are shown for each pose. This makes it much easier to create a chakra specific sequence on your own.
How do you prefer to balance your solar plexus chakra? Let us know in the comments below.