Do you feel at home in your body? Or do you feel lost, ungrounded, unsafe, and are struggling to find your feet? If you are wanting to settle down but you don’t know where, or you feel that every place you choose is wrong, it could be that your inner self is out of balance. This means you need to turn inwards and look at your root chakra, the red chakra, rather than seeking solutions in the external world.
Here we will explore what a balanced and imbalanced root chakra (red chakra) looks and feels like, and many ways to bring this energy center back into alignment.
- 1 What is the First Chakra (the First Energy Center)?
- 2 A Healthy Root Chakra
- 3 Root Chakra Color and the Earth Element
- 4 Root Chakra Imbalance and the Physical Body Symptoms
- 5 Root Chakra Imbalance and the Emotional Symptoms
- 6 How to Balance the Root Chakra
- 7 Frequently Asked Questions
What is the First Chakra (the First Energy Center)?
The root chakra is the first of the seven chakras which make up the main chakra system. In Sanskrit, it is known as the Muladhara chakra. Mula means ‘root’ and adhara means ‘base’ or ‘support’. This chakra is located at the base of the spine, near the end of the tailbone and it is a spinning wheel of vibrant red color.
The red chakra is the one that relates to a sense of safety, security (both physically and financially), and a feeling of home (in a place but also within yourself). When this energy center is in alignment, it allows a person to have a safe base to build their life upon.
The reason it is the first chakra, and also known as the ‘root’ chakra, is because it must be somewhat developed for one to keep climbing the chakra ladder and to work toward spiritual enlightenment.
A Healthy Root Chakra
When the Muladhara chakra is in balance and there is a healthy energy flow moving through it, one will feel grounded, at home within their body, and connected to the life force energy that connects us, humans, with the earth.
It will also look like having all of your basic needs met and the desire to work on personal growth. The growth throughout the chakras can also be compared to psychologist Erik Erickson’s stages of developmental growth. The first chakra relates to the first stage of developing trust.
Trust is a key issue and when the root chakra is balanced, one’s trust will be healthy and open, but also discerning as they learn to trust their own intuition too.
Root Chakra Color and the Earth Element
A deep vibrant red is the root chakra color. This color is also connected to the red energy of the earth. The red dirt, the autumn leaves, roses, red parrots, the berries, and the fruits of the earth. Root also symbolizes strength, vitality and instinctual knowing.
A balanced root chakra in the physical body also resembles the same qualities as the earth – solidly built, slow but steady progress and connection with all parts of itself.
Root Chakra Imbalance and the Physical Body Symptoms
The root chakra is connected to the lower half of the body. The legs, feet, hips and the lower part of the spine. These physical parts of the body are impacted when the root chakra is out of balance. This can manifest as poor mobility in the lower half of the body, poor flexibility in the legs, pain in the feet, ankles, knees, legs or hips, chronic or acute back pain, or recurring injuries to these parts of the body. It also relates the lower organs and can cause issues with the large intestine, gonad glands or prostate problems.
The body is the best messenger, so often when it wants to send a signal, it will make it loud and clear. If you do experience pain in these parts of the body, a solution could be to look at the root chakra qualities and see where your subtle body is out of balance.
Due to disconnection with the self, the root chakra can also manifest as eating disorders or a number of mental signs such as dissociation, fear, anxiety and depression.
Root Chakra Imbalance and the Emotional Symptoms
When it comes to emotional symptoms, a root chakra imbalance can be overactive (too much energy), underactive (too little energy), or blocked.
Underactive Root Chakra
A blocked chakra means that no energy is moving through this energy center. A blocked root chakra looks very similar to an underactive root chakra and it may manifest with the following symptoms:
- Sluggish body and lack of energy
- Having no desire to move the body or to explore new places
- Feeling unsafe and afraid of the world around you
- Depression or lack of excitement for life
- Feeling too energetically and emotionally heavy
Overactive Root Chakra
When too much energy is moving through the root chakra, it will indicate an overactive root chakra and this may look like:
- The inability to stay still, constant fidgeting, and feeling nervous
- Anxiety and scatteredness running through the mind
- Not able to find a happy home and forever wanting to move houses, cities or countries
- Feeling uncomfortable in our own body and like you want to escape your own skin
- Panic attacks
- Fear of yourself or not trusting yourself
When the root chakra is out of balance, it is important to look at mental health to reconnect the mind with the body. This will align the root chakra with the rest of the chakras in the body. Creating harmony, self-confidence and connection in all chakras.
How to Balance the Root Chakra
Balancing the root chakra creates a wonderful feeling of home and groundedness within yourself. Here are some ideas of how you can tap into this energy center:
Yoga Asanas for the Root Chakra
Tadasana (Mountain Pose)
The best yoga asana for the root chakra is mountain pose, for it connects you with the earth and allows the energy to flow freely through your body. It is also great to do this outside with your bare feet connected to the ground.
Vrskasana (Tree Pose)
This is another yoga asana that you can use to send your roots into the ground. To help with your balance and root chakra connection, imagine that you are a strong tree with roots growing from the soles of your feet and deep into the earth beneath you.
At the same time, reach your hands to the sky, tapping into a power higher above, and inviting the spiritual energy into your body too.
Balsana (Child’s Pose)
This is a wonderful introverted pose, for tuning inward and connecting your forehead to the ground. Imagine here that you are a small child, and give yourself time to nurture yourself.
In child’s pose you can also allow the connection between your body and the earth to drop you into a place where you feel safe and can practice feeling at home.
Ardho Mukha Svanasana (Downward Facing Dog)
With both your feet and hands on the ground, and your root chakra active pointed up toward the sky, this pose is a great one for channeling earth energy through your body.
As you breathe in, imagine that you are inviting earth energy up through your hands and activating the root chakra. Then as you exhale, imagine that you are sending the old and stagnant energy out of your body and back to the earth.
Each morning, to wake up and energize the root chakra, you can take 10 deep breaths holding this pose and visualizing the energy traveling through your body. Over time as your strength grows, you can stay for a few minutes if it feels good for your body.
Savasana (Corpse Pose)
Last but not least, you can’t forget savasana. In this pose, your entire body is connected to the earth beneath you. Imagine that roots grow from your spinal column down into the earth, and your energy field is being activated with a glowing red light.
Rest in Savasana often, for 10 to 15 minutes per day for ultimate chakra balancing.
Chanting for the Red Chakra
Two sanskrit words that you can use during or after your yoga practice to stimulate the red chakra are:
LAM – the seed mantra of the root chakra to awaken the energy that resides at the base of your spine. Here is how you pronounce it:
OM – the universal sound that connects you both with your higher self and your inner self.
These mantras can create true transformation in your overall health as they vibrate at a healing frequency in every cell in your body.
Crystals for the Root Chakra
Specific crystals can help you in feeling grounded and to assist you to harness courage. For the root chakra try these:
Red Jasper – With the color of the red earth, red jasper crystal will instantly ground you back into your body.
Black Tourmaline – Try this for clearing negative energy, soothing anxiety disorders or panic attacks and bringing you into the root chakra.
Obsidian – Another black crystal for grounding and clearing.
Hematite – This crystal allows you to feel centered and to return you to your sense of self-confidence.
Carnelian – With both the color red and orange, it will nourish your survival center by taking you out of fear and finding creative solutions to your basic survival problems.
Garnet – Known as the stone of health, this stone will provide root support and overall spiritual well-being. It can also give energy to the body and stimulate the adrenal glands to return to balance.
Smoky Quartz – With the energy from the quartz and the groundedness from the smokieness, this crystal will allow you to explore the higher spiritual plane and the physical world together as you work on your root chakra.
Working with the Red Chakra Color
Choosing to wear the color red will stimulate your vitality and energy. For the red chakra, start wearing red clothing, shoes, handbags, scarves or accessorize with red crystal jewelry.
This will support root chakra development as you growth into confidence to be bright and bold in your expression.
The earth is a solid foundation that holds a grounding frequency and it may be just what you need for your root chakra.
If you want to connect directly with the earth element, you can try walking barefoot on a patch of earth. There are many benefits of earthing, including:
- better sleep
- reduced pain
- stronger immune system
- feelings of connection
These effects come from reconnection with the Earth’s electrons. Many studies have found that barefoot walking is able to promote intriguing physiological changes of benefit to the human body.
You simply need to head outside for a few minutes, the longer the better, and connect your feet to a patch of earth. This can be soft grass, bare rocks, tree roots or soil. These few short moments will nourish your whole body and especially activate the root chakra element.
Plus, spending time in nature is also beneficial for balancing the heart chakra, the green chakra, as you tap into the multiple energy centers of nature and invite them into your own energy centers!
Essential Oils for the Root Chakra
Grounding and woody scented essential oils are the best for the red chakra. You can either take a few drops and rub them into your lower spine, or alternatively, rub the oils into the soles of your feet. You can put them on your feet before bed to assist with deep sleep and rejuvenation.
Try these oils for the red chakra:
- Red Spruce
You may also like to collect these pine, cedarwood or spruce leaves if they grow locally to you, and keep them in your home while the earthy scents waft through your home.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know if my root chakra is out of balance?
You may experience high levels of fear, anxiety or depression or eating disorders. You could also have chronic or acute pain in the lower back, feet, knees, ankles or hips. You may experience recurrent injuries to this part of your body or a lack of stability in the joints. There may also be a lack of flexibility in the legs and hips. You may notice an overcompensation of energy in the other chakras which may look like excess movement, or constantly seeking spiritual connection to make up for the lack of connection you have with yourself and the earth.
How can I balance my root chakra?
Grounding is the key! Do this through specific yoga poses that work with the base of the spine, add more red color to your life, chant mantras for the muladhara chakra, work with oils, nature, and particularly earthing. Connect with the earth as much as you can and you will easily reconnect with your red chakra.