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Root Chakra: Here’s Everything You Need to Know About Your First Chakra

There are seven main chakras in the body. The first chakra is the Root Chakra, or Muladhara.

Each chakra corresponds to a particular part of the body and particular characteristics within ourselves. As the first chakra, the Root Chakra plays a big role in our lives and how we relate to the world around us.

Our emotions reside physically in our bodies. On a subtle level, our bodies communicate with the energies around us and certain energetic impulses usually relate directly to a certain part of the body and chakra that’s weakened or imbalanced.

Each chakra represents a spiritual life lesson or challenge to help us gain a more in-depth understanding of our personal and spiritual power. This, in turn, helps us learn how to overcome obstacles, let go of emotional blockages, and walk the path towards spiritual consciousness.

“There is deep wisdom within our very flesh, if we can only come to our senses and feel it.” -Elizabeth A. Behnke

The first chakra is known by several names: root, base, or Muladhara. “Muladhara” in Sanskrit means “foundation.”

The Root Chakra keeps us grounded and roots us to familial beliefs that support the early formations of identity and a sense of belonging. The energy of the Muladhara is communal and familial power. It’s all about family dynamics, and basic needs like feeling safe, supported, and provided for.

You may recognize this chakra in our former YogiApproved logo:


Here Are the Main Characteristics of the Root Chakra:

The Muladhara is the “who am I in relation to others?” chakra. We all need that basic support network – it’s ingrained in our primordial brains in order to survive.

We are born into – and continue to seek – this group belonging throughout life.

When balanced in harmonious environments, the Root Chakra encourages safety in numbers. It provides for life’s basic necessities, like feeling at home, feeling supported within your family, and knowing you can develop a sense of self.

Want an overview of the entire chakra system? Read: An Introduction to All 7 Chakras

The Root Chakra is Instinctual

The main focus of the first chakra is food, sex, shelter, and survival. It even encompasses loyalty and honor to the “pack.” The compulsion to overeat or hoard material items and money is a negative expression of our instinct for survival.

If our primal needs are not satisfied (i.e. we feel like we are not getting enough food, money, goods, or sex to quench that desire), then our Muladhara is dysfunctional. This means we are seriously disconnected to the earth.

The 1st Chakra is the Foundation of Emotional and Mental Health

If the emotional and psychological stability within your childhood family dynamic was (and still is) a harmonious one, then you will have a balanced Root Chakra with strong survival instincts that can withstand the challenges of adult life.

Various mental illnesses are generated from early negative family experiences and can cause further disruptions to the higher chakras when this First Chakra is out of sync.

The Root Chakra is the energetic recycling bin of our auric field.

Emotional issues associated with the Muladhara can translate into physical diseases because we feel unprotected and unloved by our community. This can include immune-related disorders.

What the Root Chakra Teaches Us

The lesson of the Muladhara Chakra is to have the willpower to break free from emotional bondage that holds you back. If you are unable to find personal freedom, you’ll end up carrying a lot of emotional baggage with you into your careers and future relationships.

As a result, your view of the real world becomes distorted. Living life becomes frightening and unstable because the emotional foundations were not properly rooted within you from an early age.


The Power of the Root Chakra

As the energetic recycling bin of our auric field, the Root Chakra turns negative emotional energies into power and light. Then the chakra returns this to the earth as energetic compost.

We cannot expel waste energies if our root selves are disassociated with the earth and our primal impulses are imbalanced.

Let it all wash away into the soil. We need to let go of certain attitudes that could be harmful before these energetic issues filter up the higher chakras.

The Root Chakra is our first understanding of love and survival and is vital to our journey that we heal any blockages from our roots up.

The Muladhara is beautifully primordial with earthly feminine power. It’s the power of touch during love-making. It’s the loving affection in the form of hugs and kisses we give our children.

The Root Chakra is the foundation of life and it urges us to procreate and express physical and supportive love to those we cherish.

We sometimes forget the importance of the Root Chakra (or the chakras in general for many people). Yogis tend to focus more on the higher chakras to attain enlightenment or a sense of peace.

But how can we know peace if our foundations are not solid? How can a tree stand tall and proud if it has no roots to support its growth?

Signs of Imbalance in the Root Chakra:

A few examples of the Root Chakra’s physical manifestations when imbalanced are:

  • Skeletal problems arising from lack of support from the collective familial body
  • Intestinal disorders when we are unable to recycle emotional waste
  • Reproductive issues come from feeling undeserving of a loving family


Root Chakra imbalance can lead to thoughts or actions based on a sense of lack (ie hoarding, overeating, etc). Imbalance causes emotional issues stemming from an inability to feel grounded, and sexual issues that derive from energetic blockage or past traumas.

How to Balance and Heal Your Root Chakra:

Apply this life medicine to your Root Chakra. Dance to the beat of a drum, walk in nature, plant seeds, feel mud between your toes, and forgive the past.

Do things that make you feel grounded. Celebrate the people in your life that you love and that make you feel safe.

Connect to your First Chakra even more with the poses, crystals, and essential oils below.

Yoga Poses for the Root Chakra: Warrior One, Triangle Pose, and Eagle Pose
Crystals to Balance the Root Chakra: Carnelian and Bloodstone
Aromatherapy to activate the Root Chakra: Cedarwood, Patchouli, Myrrh

The Root Chakra symbolizes our potential to grow. By mastering intrinsic emotions to blossom, we emerge from the mud like a lotus flower.

When you find balance in your Root Chakra, you find balance in all aspects of your life. It all starts with the first chakra!

Take the Chakra Awakening Online Yoga Program

Practice a yoga class to balance and align each of your seven chakras on YA Classes by YouAligned!

Yoga Program
With Carrie Varela

Watch the Chakra Awakening preview video here!

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Katie Ness

Katie Ness is an Ayurvedic Yoga teacher, Reiki teacher, Women’s Circle facilitator, belly dancer and artist from the UK. As a traveling yogini, she has visited over 20 countries. She spends her free time illustrating in her nature journal, writing poetry, and reading. Katie is currently studying herbalism and botanical illustration.

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