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3 Key Poses to Open the Heart Chakra

Anahata, the fourth primary chakra, is located at the heart. It serves as our center of love for oneself and others, compassion, empathy and forgiveness. It is the source of deep and profound truths that cannot be expressed with our voice.

When the heart chakra is in healthy alignment you will feel surrounded by love, compassion, and joy and connected to the world around you. An open heart chakra allows us to see beauty and love around us and connects us to ourselves and our loved ones. This chakra also helps direct love back to ourselves, enabling us to love and accept ourselves and our bodies.

Blocked chakras can affect the entirety of our being leading to physical ailments like poor circulation, high or low blood pressure and other heart conditions and circulatory problems. If this chakra is compromised, you may also find it hard to develop and keep healthy relationships. Relationship trauma can deeply impact the heart chakra creating feelings of unworthiness, inability to trust yourself or others, and can create a sense of isolation.

Luckily, there are practices to unblock the heart chakra such as love and gratitude meditations, reiki, acupuncture and heart opening yoga poses.

Below are three examples of Heart Chakra poses:

One Legged King Pigeon:

1. From Down Dog lift your right leg, bringing your right knee forward on your mat to a classic pigeon pose

2. Adjust your right foot so that the shin is parallel with the front edge of the mat or keep the heel closer to your groin.

3. From this classic pigeon pose bend your left leg bringing your foot toward your spine.

4. Reach one arm over your head, then bend your elbows, reaching back to take hold of your foot.

Dancer Pose:

1. Start in a standing position with your feet together.

2. Bend one knee, reach for in the inside of the ankle, while rooting down through your standing leg.

3. Bring your bent knee behind you while wheeling your body into a back bend shape.

4. Begin to tip forward, lift your heart and reach your lifted foot up behind you.

Wheel Pose:

1. Begin wheel only after warming up the body as a safety precaution.

2. Come to lie on your back

3. Bend your knees, bringing the soles of your feet onto your mat. Reach down with your fingertips and make sure that you can just graze your heels. The feet should be parallel and hips' distance apart.

4. Bend your elbows and bring the palms of your hands overhead, placing them underneath your shoulders with the fingertips pointing towards your feet.

5. Inhale and press down into your palms and your feet as you lift your shoulders and hips up off the floor.

6. **To modify, enter into wheel from a 3 legged down dog (or scorpion dog) instead. Proceed to open the hip while slowly flipping upside down leaving one arm in the air rather than having two hands on the ground (as pictured above).

As a certified yoga instructor and reiki therapist based in Seattle, I like to blend a variety of techniques into my practice to ensure that your body feels healthy, strong and balanced. I teach group in-person classes, live virtual group classes and also offer custom private or group sessions on a by request basis. Click Here for Details


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