Kundalini Yoga is pretty magical. The effects of even a regular weekly class can be transformational. Many of my students rave about the huge difference they feel in their overall well-being from regular weekly practice.
Can you imagine how you would feel if you practiced every day?
Home practice can be 20 minutes, 30 minutes, an hour if you have the luxury of time - something, however small, will make a difference. Because that is the magic of Kundalini.
It's that time of the year when I head off on retreat to Sri Lanka to replenish, renew and heal. Recent events in Sri Lanka make it even more imperative for me to visit, with or without my students, so that I can give back to a community that has welcomed and supported me over the years. And so there will be no classes for most of July, which is why I am giving you a simple home practice to keep you going until I return.
The following kriya with relaxation and rests will probably take 30 minutes.
If you don't have a lot of time, you can practice exercise 10. Sat Kriya on its own, followed by relaxation. very important to follow sat kriya with deep relaxation.
A daily practice of Stretch Pose is also very beneficial. Your abs will thank you for it!
And even practicing to relax in savasana (the most difficult pose of your practice) will bring about huge transformation. And your nervous system will also be very grateful!
Always remember to tune in with the Adi Mantra - Ong Namo Guru Dev Namo, and tune-out with three long Sat Nam's.
Kriya For Elevation
This kriya is an excellent tune-up. It systematically exercises the spine and balances all your chakras (energy centres).
1. Ego Eradicator
Sit in easy pose. Raise arms to a 60 degree angle. Curl the fingertips onto the pads at the base of the fingers. Plug the thumbs into the sky. Eyes closed. Concentrate above the head and do Breath of Fire - even in and out breath through the nostrils, accentuating the exhale slightly. keep the belly soft and let it move with the breath - belly moves out on the inhale and in on the exhale.
2. Spinal Flex
Sitting in easy pose, grasp the shins or ankles with both hands. As you inhale, flex the spine forward and lift the chest. As you exhale, flex the spine back, keeping the shoulders relaxed and the head straight. 1 minute
Then inhale, exhale and relax.
3. Spinal Twist
In easy pose, grab the shoulders with the thumbs in back and the fingers in front. Keep the elbows high with the arms parallel to the ground.
Inhale as you twist the head and torso to the left. Exhale as you twist to the right. 1 minute
To end, inhale facing forward. Exhale and relax.
4. Front Life Nerve Stretch
Stretch both legs out in front. Grab the toes in finger lock (index finger and middle finger pull the toe and thumb presses the nail of the big toe) or hold on to shins.
Exhale as you lengthen the core of the spine, bending forward from the navel. Inhale, use legs to push up. Continue with deep powerful breathing. 1 minute
To end, inhale up and hold the breath briefly. Stay up and exhale completely, holding breath out briefly. Inhale and relax.
5. Modified Maha Mudra
Sit with right heel tucked into perineum and left leg extended forward. Grasp the big toe of left foot with both hands, applying a pressure against the toenail. Pull neck lock - chin pressed back as if to make a double chin. Exhale, bring elbows towards the ground as you lengthen the spine, bending forward from the navel, bringing head to the knee. Spine stays straight. Hold with Breath of Fire 1 minute.
To end: exhale and stretch head and torso forward and down. Hold breath out briefly.
Switch legs and repeat exercise. 1 minute
6. Life Nerve Stretch
Spread the legs wide, grasping the toes as in exercise 4. Or hold on to shins. Inhale and stretch the spine straight, pulling back on the toes. Exhale and bending at the waist, bring the head down to left knee. Inhale up to centre position and exhale down towards right knee. Continue the side movement with powerful breathing 1 minute.
Inhale up to centre and exhale, bending straight forward from the waist touching forehead to the floor. Continue up and down motion with powerful breathing 1 minute
To end: Inhale up stretching the spine straight. Exhale, bring forehead towards the floor. Hold breath out briefly as you stretch forwards and down. Inhale and relax.
7. Cobra Pose
Lie on stomach with palms flat on floor under shoulders. heels are together with soles of feet facing up. Inhale into Cobra, arching the spine, vertebra by vertebra, from the neck to the base of the spine until arms are straight. Listen to your back. If this is too strong for your lower back, stay low on your forearms in half-cobra.
Begin Breath of Fire 1 minute
To end: inhale, arching spine to maximum. Exhale and hold breath out briefly, apply mulabandh. Inhale. exhaling slowly, lower the arms and relax the spine from the base to the top. Relax, lying on stomach with chin on floor and arms by the side.
8. Shoulder Shrugs
Sit in easy pose. Place hands on knees. Inhale and shrug shoulders up towards the ears. exhale and drop the shoulders down. Continue rhythmically with powerful breathing for 1 minute.
Inhale. Exhale and relax.
9. Neck Rolls
Sit in easy pose. begin rolling the neck clockwise in a circular motion, bringing the right ear toward the right shoulder, the back of the head toward the back of the neck, the left ear toward the left shoulder and the chin toward the chest. Keep the shoulders relaxed and motionless. 1 minute
Then reverse the direction. 1 minute
Bring head to central position and relax.
10. Sat Kriya
Sit on heels with arms overhead and palms together. Interlace fingers except for index fingers which point straight up and thumbs. Men cross right thumb over left and women the reverse.
Chant Sat Naam in a constant rhythm. Chant Sat (sounds like Sut) from the navel point and pull the navel all the way in and up. On Naam relax the navel. 3 minutes
To end: inhale and squeeze the muscles tight from buttocks all way up the back past the shoulders. Mentally allow the energy to flow through the top of the skull. Exhale. Inhale deeply. Exhale completely and apply mulabandh with breath held out.
Inhale and relax.
11. Deep relaxation on back. 5-10 minutes