At Sun Rock Yoga, we’re always looking for new yoga and pilates classes to add to our line-up. Whether it’s a challenging Barre Class designed to help you sculpt your muscles or our newest gentle, flow-centered class, Find Your Joy Yoga, designed to meet yogis where they are in their own practice, we love finding new ways to help our students continue their yoga journey.
In October, we added another new and unique class to our schedule. Kundalini Yoga is an ancient form of yoga practice that combines a challenging workout with a spiritual focus on breathwork, chanting, and meditation. Ready to give Kundalini Yoga a try? Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about this unique style of yoga.
The History of Kundalini Yoga
The word “kundalini” is Sanskrit for “coiled serpent.” The term was chosen to refer to the divine energy that is lying “coiled” inside of each and every human body. Yogis who developed Kundalini Yoga felt that this energy was contained in our root chakra.
Activating Our Root Chakra
It’s believed that each of us has 7 chakras, or energy centers, in our bodies. These chakras are stacked, one on top of the next, from the top of our heads through to the bottom of our spine. The root chakra is located at the base of your spin, above your bottom.
Usually, the energy contained in your root chakra lays dormant. Through yoga, it is believed that you can activate the energy contained in your root chakra. After activating it, that energy travels up your chakras, reaching your crown chakra. Kundalini Yoga is one option for activating your root chakra.
When Was Kundalini Yoga Invented?
Kundalini Yoga traces its roots back to 5000 BCE. It’s believed that Kundalini Yoga was originally used by warriors practicing the Sikh religion in early India. But while Kundalini Yoga was developed in India, many of the practices and beliefs of this form of yoga can be found in the ancient teachings of the Tibetans, Egyptians, Africans, and even Native American tribes. Some of the earliest references to the term “kundalini” appear in sacred Hindu scriptures from the fifth century BC, though it was likely shared through oral histories prior to this time.
Kundalini Yoga made its way to the West sometime in the 1970s, when yoga was growing in popularity in the U.S. Yogi Bhajan is often credited with bringing Kundalini Yoga to the U.S. in 1969, and creating the form of Kundalini Yoga that we practice today. He combined two other forms of yoga, taking asanas and breathing exercise from the Hatha style of yoga, and combining it with chanting and devotional practices from the teachings of the Sikh saint Maharaj Virsa Singh.
While it may not be as common as some other forms of yoga, it is widely practiced around the world today.
What Can You Expect From a Kundalini Yoga Class?
Since its arrival and development in the U.S. in the 1970s, Kundalini Yoga has grown in popularity. Many celebrities, including Gisele Bundchen and Russel Brand, have been known to enjoy this form of yoga. Kundalini Yoga combines two different styles. You’ll focus on your breath and asana, or your physical poses, as well as chanting, meditation, and singing.
Each Kundalini Yoga class consists of three parts. You’ll begin with an opening chant, designed to help you “tune in” to your body. Next, you’ll warm up your spine, as you prepare to awaken your root chakra. Then, you’ll move into a kriya, which is a sequence of postures that you’ll move through, each paired with a breathing technique. You’ll end your class with a final song or meditation.
The kriya is the primary focus of your Kundalini class. During this phase, your instructor will help you move through each pose, while also placing emphasis on your breathing. Depending on your class and instructor, you’ll practice a variety of different breathing techniques.
For instance, Breath of Fire is one popular technique, which requires you to take quick breaths by sealing your lips and breathing rapidly through your nose, forcing between two and three breaths per second. As you breathe out, you’ll engage your core.
During the chanting and meditation element of your Kundalini class, you’ll repeat a variety of mantras designed to focus your mind and help you connect with your body.
Other Sun Rock Yoga Classes to Try
Kundalini Yoga is a great chance to practice your breathing, relax your mind, and challenge your body. But it’s far from the only option to choose from at Sun Rock.
At Sun Rock Yoga studio, we offer a variety of yoga, barre, and pilates classes for students to choose from. If you enjoy the combination of meditation and movement, a Vinyasa Flow class is another great choice. In this flow-based class, you’ll move from one posture to the next while focusing on your breathing. You’ll end your class in a Savasana pose, enjoying some moments of stillness and meditation. Budokon Yoga is another ancient form of yoga. It combines some of the practices of martial arts and calisthenics with classic yoga.
New to yoga? Our Red Rock yoga studio welcomes yogis at every stage in their journey! We have several classes designed for beginners. In our Yoga Foundations class, you’ll learn the basics, at a slow, accessible pace. Your instructor will focus on aligning your body and developing the basics of breathwork and meditation. Our Find Your Joy Yoga class is another gentle flow class designed to be non-competitive and beginner-friendly.
Choosing the Best Kundalini Yoga Classes
Whether you want to try Kundalini Yoga or are looking for something more beginner friendly, you’ll have a variety of classes to choose from at Sun Rock Yoga studio.
At Sunrock, we believe that yoga is for every body! Not sure which class is right for you? You can always give us a call to learn more about each of our yoga, pilates, and barre classes. Or, opt for our 30 for $30 pass. This pass allows new Sun Rock yogis to try as many classes as they’d like for 30 days, for just $30. Sample a few different classes to find which ones are right for you, and to get a better feel for our beautiful studio. Sign up today to get started!