Chakra is a Sanskrit word that means “wheel” and is in reference to the spinning flow of energy within the center of the body. Each of the seven main chakras, or wheels, spin energy that corresponds to major organs and nerves.

Muladhara or Root Chakra is located at the base of the spine and reflects the base or foundation for life. When balanced, this chakra provides the grounding needed for withstanding challenges and is responsible for giving a sense of security and stability. When the Root Chakra is blocked, one may feel stuck in life, sluggish, or inflexible, as well as ungrounded, unsafe, or insecure; the physical signs are pain and stiffness in feet and legs.

Svadhisthana or Sacral Chakra is located just beneath the belly button and is responsible for sexual and creative energy, as well as understanding or relating to emotions of oneself and others. A blocked Sacral Chakra may cause difficulty with becoming emotionally or sexually intimate, feelings of inferiority, being emotionally overwhelmed, or experiencing creative blocks; the physical signs are lower back and hip mobility problems.

Manipura or Solar Plexus Chakra is located in the stomach area. This chakra is responsible for confidence and self-esteem, as well as feeling in control of life. If the Solar Plexus Chakra becomes blocked, one may experience feeling powerless, unable to voice thoughts or be assertive, having a false self-image (low self-esteem or overinflated ego), and can allow low self-image to interfere with making commitments or following through with plans; the physical signs are digestive issues and abdominal pain.

Anahata or Heart Chakra is located near the heart, in the center of the chest. This chakra allows us to love and show compassion. A blocked Heart Chakra can result in feeling unable to emotionally connect to others (especially in romantic relationships), be authentic, or receive love and kindness, as well as not being able to let go of past hurts and grudges; physically, this blockage can cause asthma and allergies, upper back or chest pain, or tight shoulders.

Vishudda or Throat Chakra is located at the throat and is the center for verbal communication. An aligned Throat Chakra gives the ability to speak and listen with compassion and confidence. When blocked, one may have the tendency to dominate conversations, speak without thinking, gossip, feel anxious or nervous and unable to vocalize thoughts or feelings, or be overly agreeable or easygoing; physical signs include sore throats or feeling as if the throat is blocked, irritated gums, jaw pain, teeth grinding, and neck pain or stiffness.

Ajna or Third Eye Chakra is located between the eyes and is responsible for intuition, imagination, and being able to see the big picture. If the Third Eye Chakra is blocked, one may have trouble listening, struggle to find meaning in life, experience difficulty when making decisions, lack inspiration, or have overactive imagination; the physical signs are often headaches and tension in the brow area, issues with hearing and vision, trouble concentrating, and brain fog.

Sahasrara or Crown Chakra is located at the top of the head and represents spiritual connection to the self, others, and the universe, as well as playing a role in guiding life’s purpose. When open, this chakra helps keep the other chakras open, and brings bliss and enlightenment. A blocked Crown Chakra can result in feelings of loneliness, insignificance, and aimlessness, as well as the inability to let go of ego-oriented objects or ideals, including extreme reluctance to amend viewpoints or ideas even when presented with new facts and information; the physical signs are migraine and tension headaches.