Terminology

Breath or Pranayama is energy management. Kundalini Yoga uses a wide range of pranayam techniques to manage the different energy states of health, consciousness and emotion.

Chakra means "wheel". Chakras are energy centers or vortices. They exist as dynamic energies, and they can help us understand how a human being processes energy within the vast and complex interplay of a multi-leveled existence. In studying and teaching Kundalini Yoga, we focus on the eight major chakras: seven associated with the physical body, starting at the base of the spine and rising up to the crown of the head, plus the aura.

Kriya in Kundalini yoga is a sequence of postures, breath, and sound that are integrated together to allow the manifestation of a particular state. It is a whole unto its self. It is a series of postures (asana) designed to produce a specific and subtle impact on the total self.

Kundalini is a Sanskrit word meaning "coiled up" or "coiling like a snake". It describes the energy that in yoga tradition is located at the base of the spine in the root chakra.

Kundalini Yoga is a Raj Yoga, once called the science of the serpent power (kundalini-shakti). In Eastern symbology, the serpent represents energy, essence, awareness, rejuvenation and the play of the spirit.

Mantra is a formula that alters the patterns of the mind and the chemistry of the brain, according to physical and metaphysical laws. The mantras used in Kundalini Yoga elevate or modify consciousness through their meaning and rhythmical repetition.

Meditation is the process of controlling and transcending the waves of the mind and allowing the flow of radiance from the soul. Through meditation, you can calm the mind and develop your intuition to recognize what is real and important to you.

Mudras are hand positions that lock or seal in energy and guide its flow and reflexes to the brain. Each area of the hand connects to a certain part of the body or brain, representing different emotions and behaviors.

Relaxation is essential for physical and mental well-being. Kundalini Yoga gives people the tools to be able to truly relax. Relaxation is an important part of the rhythm of exercise and change in Kundalini Yoga. The physiological and neural state of a student is elevated after completing a Kundalini Yoga kriya. During this state, relaxation serves several functions: rejuvenation, distribution of prana (life force) stimulated by the exercises, release of rigid patterns in the muscles and blood, and learning how to manage stress.