Balancing Your Solar Plexus: 5 Yin Yoga Poses for Confidence and Self Esteem

I've been working the way up the chakra chain, creating a yin yoga practice for each one. And this week I'm back with the third installment - Solar Plexus.

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I've been working the way up the chakra chain, creating a yin yoga practice for each one. And this week I'm back with the third installment - Solar Plexus.

The Solar Plexus is located at the center of the abdomen, just above the naval. This one is different from the first two in that they deal with your relationship to the outside world, and this one deals with your relationship to yourself.

The third chakra deals with confidence, self worth and self esteem. It is associated with the colour yellow. Throughout this practice, imagine a bright yellow light shining in this space.
 
 The intention for each of these chakra practices is to find balance within this area of your life. In this practice you are trying to find balance between humility and confidence - if overactive you might be cocky, if underactive you may think very little of yourself.

As in previous chakra classes I will provide you with an affirmation relating to the chakra for each pose. Just repeat it back to yourself silently, and see how it makes you feel. If it's easy to hear, you probably don't have work to do with this affirmation, but if you find one uncomfortable or have a hard time believing it to be true, you will want to give this area more attention.

We will move through poses to open the abdomen, side body and belly. Have handy any props you like to include in your practice.

Try to hold each pose between 2 and 5 minutes. If you want to set yourself a timer for each, this can be a helpful way to let yourself rest into the pose and focus on the affirmation without worrying about how much time has gone by.

If you've missed the first two, feel free to check them out first or practice them later.
Root Chakra
Sacral Chakra 

1. Seated Meditation - Sit in any way that is comfortable to you. Close your eyes and let your hands rest on your knees. Take some cleansing breaths in and out through the nose, clearing your mind. As you breathe in and out, see if you can send your breath into the area of the solar plexus. Can you visualize a bright yellow glowing jewel, light, or lotus flower here? Ask yourself, what is your relationship with self? How is your self esteem, your confidence, your self worth? Bring the right hand to the solar plexus, and then stack left hand on top. Take a deep cleansing breath - inhaling through the nostrils, then sighing it out through the mouth. Bring the hands together at the heart and chant OM one time.


2. Square Pose with a Twist - From seated, bring the right ankle over the left knee so that the shins are stacked one on top of the other. Creating a triangle of space between the legs when you look down. Flex both feet. If this pose is already too intense for the hips, sit up on a block, or place a block between the upper knee and bottom ankle. OR bring one shin to rest on the ground in front of the other, instead of stacking the shins. Rotate, so that your torso faces toward your right foot (turning left). Walk the hands forward and melt down. You may want to place a block under the head here. I like to prop myself up with my hand here. If you can reach, you can try to hook your right elbow inside of your right foot. Take your time settling into the pose, and then begin to repeat the affirmation.
Affirmation: "I deserve to be seen and heard."

3. Seated Side Bend - Slowly unwind and lift back out of the pose. Extend the right leg out to the side and bring your foot into the groin area. Drop over to the right side. Let your right hand rest on your leg, or bring your elbow down to the ground and rest on your fist. Use the left hand to push your knee open.
Affirmation: "My confidence inspires others."

Make your way to Square Pose on the other side, with your left foot stacked on top of the right knee. Rotating towards the left foot/right side, then fold.
Affirmation: "I am worthy of love, success and happiness."

Move through the seated side bend on the other side by extending the left leg out and dropping to the left.
Affirmation: "I am comfortable standing up for myself."

4. Side Seal - Extend both legs out straight towards the left. Bring your right hand down to the ground. Roll over on to your right hip and right leg. You are trying to find a deep stretch through the right side of the body here, from the hip all the way to the shoulder crease. To deepen the sensation, straighten your right arm and bring your hand in closer to the body. To make the stretch more easeful, move your hand further away or come down onto your elbow. Flex both feet, and stack one over the other. Bring your left hand to the ground for additional support. Close your eyes.
Affirmation: "Strength and courage flows through me."

Bend in to the knees and release the pose. Slowly switch sides.
Affirmation: "I respect and care for myself."

5. Laying Spinal Twist - This is my favourite pose for the solar plexus. Lower your way down to your back. Bend into the knees and bring the soles of the feet to the mat. Open your arms up into cactus, resting them into the ground. Lift the hips, shift them slightly to the right, and lower back down. Drop both knees towards the left. Option to cross the right thigh over the left thigh,
Affirmation: "I deserve to go after my dreams."

Slowly unravel and lift the knees back up to center. Shift the hips to the left and drop your knees to the right.
Affirmation: "I am empowered and I empower others."

Don't forget to finish with a resting savasana!

If you find it easier to let my voice softly guide you through each transition, watch along with the video below.



Namaste,
Kassandra



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