The first chakra in our energy system is the Root Chakra. To understand more about what a chakra is, read first The Basics of Chakras. The Root Chakra is located at the base of the spine. Energy enters this chakra through the legs and it spins downward between the legs. Energy then moves up through the Root Chakra into the Sacral Chakra, located above it.
The color vibration of the root chakra is Red, and its complimentary color is green. The element associated with this chakra is the earth and fire element. It is the red quality - the essence of fire- that sets all of the power in one’s life. The first chakra is identified as well with the sun, the creator and sustainer of energy and life. The gemstone is ruby and animal symbol is the snake.
The Root Chakra is the foundation of the seven chakras, thus responsible for our survival, grounding, and vitality in life. The main endocrine gland of the Root Chakra is the adrenal glands. Our adrenal glands are responsible for our "fight or flight" reaction when we are confronted with a perceived threat. Adrenaline is released to prepare our body for battle or to react as the situation needs. The physical body and organs regulated by the first chakra are the hips, legs, feet, perineum, base of the spine, bones, and lower organs of elimination.
A healthy, optimally functioning Root Chakra will bring a sense of safety, security, and vitality. One will feel that they have a sense of purpose, direction, and can make sensible financial and career decisions that are easily aligned with their life goals. Energy levels will be strong and consistent on a daily basis. Feeling grounded and stable will be a common theme. The lower body will feel strong, supportive, and flexible that is able to carry one through life with ease. A Root Chakra that is open and vibrant will help one to feel a strong connection to the earth and mother nature.
When there is a dysfunction or deficiency in the Root Chakra, one will feel a lack of energy. When the adrenal glands are constantly reacting to stress, anger, anxiety, or trauma, they burn out and energy levels will decrease dramatically. Chronic fatigue syndrome stems from a Root Chakra imbalance. Often times one will complain of feeling "ungrounded". When this occurs, they may experience headaches, confusion, and feel "out there".
Emotionally and mentally, one might feel that they have no purpose or meaning in life. They feel confused, lack direction in life, and struggle with achieving their goals. Root Chakra dysfunction can manifest as irresponsibility with finances, poor decision making, and struggles with finding a career. Ailments that commonly occur are sciatica, foot, hip, and knee pain and injuries. These have a symbolic representation of fear of moving forward in life, feeling unsupported, and being inflexible and unbalanced.
If you follow a yoga practice, many of the postures will assist in opening the Root Chakra. These will include Mountain Pose (Tadasana), Bridge Pose, Standing Forward Fold, or Frog Pose. Think of postures that are hip openers. Another way to balance your Root Chakra is through eating foods that are red in color and natural that match the vibrational pattern of this energy center. This includes red peppers, beets, tomatoes, strawberries, and cherries.
A hand gesture that recharges the Root Chakra by aligning it with earth energies can also be beneficial. Touch the top of your ring finger on each hand to the tip of your thumb. The rest of your fingers should be straight. The grounding energy from this hand position helps to balance the different elements of the body by stabilizing and strengthening the body while alleviating fatigue. Deep breathing and freeing the mind helps to enhance the benefits of this hand gesture.
A technique one can use to open and balance the Root Chakra are to stand with your feet planted firmly on the ground. Envision your body as a tree trunk and your feet are the roots that are growing into the ground. Take 3 slow, deliberate breaths as you feel a strong connection to the earth. Feel the earths energy travel up your feet and legs and enter the Root Chakra at the base of your spine. Place your hands on your hips and send energy from your palms directly into the root chakra. Envision the color red swirling around your legs and hips in a clockwise fashion. Repeat the mantra: "Vitality, Safety, Security".
An optimally functioning Root Chakra is the basis of your physical body. Enhance your well-being and energy levels by maintaining an open, balanced, vibrant Root Chakra.