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What Are Kriyas In Yoga & Why Ought to You Do Them?

While you transfer past asana, you shortly understand that the world of yoga is way larger than you first thought. There are a lot of totally different yogic methods past poses and meditation.

One you could have come throughout is the Kriyas. Kriya yoga refers to historic Yogic and Ayurvedic cleaning methods, which have been utilized by Indians for 1000’s of years. Whereas Kriya yoga stays largely unknown within the western world, Indian yogis swear by this every day follow.

So what are Kriyas in Yoga, and what do they do? Let’s discover out.

What Does Kriya Yoga Imply?

Kriyas are cleaning methods used to cleanse the physique or unlock/open power channels or chakras. They can assist awaken Kundalini Shakti and direct power as much as the backbone. Some may assist to enhance the functioning of bodily methods like digestion and scale back widespread sicknesses.

The Sanskrit phrase Kriya interprets to “accomplished motion,” and they’re practiced in conventional Hatha and Kundalini yoga.

In Kundalini yoga, they contain a mix of particular workouts (asana), respiration methods (pranayama), sacred sounds (mantras), and hand gestures (mudras). In Hatha yoga, Kriyas are a selected approach centered on cleaning one physique half, such because the nasal passage or inner organs.

Kriyas have been initially meant to be taught on a person foundation. A guru would share them together with his college students when he believed they have been prepared, they usually must bear an initiation to turn into a Kriya yogi.

The place Does The Kriya Yoga Custom Come From?

Historic yogis found the powers of kriyas 1000’s of years in the past, they usually have been first talked about in The Yoga Sutras by Patanjali, the oldest recognized yogic textual content. Kriyas additionally appeared within the Upanishads and Bhagavad Gita, two different historic Hindu texts.

Yoga sutra 2.1 outlines the three pillars of Kriya yoga – Tapas (self-discipline), Svadhyaya (Self-study), and Ishvara Pranidhana (self-surrender). It additionally states following these pillars will neutralize the causes of human struggling and result in self and god realization.

Kriyas weren’t recognized within the west till the Nineteen Twenties once they have been launched by Indian monk Paramahansa Yogananda. In his guide, “Autobiography of a Yogi,” he outlined kriya yoga as “union with the infinite via a sure motion or ceremony.”

Kriya yoga is commonly referred to as the “Yoga of Motion or Consciousness” and comes from the Raja yoga lineage. Raja is likely one of the 4 paths of yoga, along with Karma Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, and Jnana Yoga.

What Is The Goal Of Kriya Apply?

You might marvel what goal this historic approach has in modern-day life. Whereas the unique intention of Kriya yoga is to attain a non secular awakening, there are a lot of different advantages to be gained from working towards these methods.

Briefly, Kriya yoga helps to detoxify and rejuvenate the physique, thoughts, and soul by

  • Stimulating the thoughts, which will increase psychological readability and focus
  • Enhancing the movement of life drive, which in flip, boosts power ranges
  • Releasing toxins and stagnant power from the physique
  • Clearing and opening the chakras.
  • Strengthening the immune system and defending in opposition to widespread sicknesses and illnesses
  • Gaining management of unfavorable feelings and thought patterns
  • Aiding non secular progress and serving to to achieve inside peace

The 6 Hatha Kriya Yoga Methods

There are six forms of Shat Kriyas practiced in Hatha yoga. Day by day follow is believed to convey final purification and self-realization, however every has distinctive advantages.

  • Kapalabhati (Purifying the mind by stimulating the mind cells)
  • Jala Neti (Cleaning of the nasal passages)
  • Trataka (purification of the eyes via eye workouts)
  • Nauli (Strengthening the belly muscle tissues)
  • Dhauti (Cleaning the digestive observe)
  • Basti (Cleaning the colon and enormous gut)

Let’s take a better take a look at every kriya approach.


Kapalabhati is a yogic respiration approach and one of the crucial fashionable kriyas practiced within the west. Kapal means cranium, and Bhati means “to shine,” so it interprets to skull-shining breath. It’s each a purifying and energizing respiration approach, so it may be used to organize you for asana follow or meditation.

In Kriya yoga, the first goal of Kapalabhati is to purify the thoughts and stimulate digestion. It entails taking quick, forceful exhales via the nostril whereas contracting the belly muscle tissues. The tempo is fast, and the inhales happen naturally between every exhale.

Kapalabhati can also be nice for lung well being and breath mastery. It will increase lung effectivity, so the extra you follow, the extra reps you are able to do in a spherical. Check out this video to see this Kriya approach in motion.

Jala Neti

Neti is a nasal cleaning train carried out with a selected instrument often called a Neti pot. The Neti Kriya has many well being advantages, corresponding to:

  • Clearing the sinuses and eradicating mucus and pollution from the nasal passage
  • Stopping respiratory ailments
  • Serving to problems of the eyes, nostril, and throat, corresponding to tonsillitis and irritation of the mucus membrane
  • Selling deep nasal respiration

First, you must fill the Neti pot with a saltwater answer. Then, tilt your head sideways (over the sink) and place the spout within the higher nostril. Subsequent, breathe via an open mouth as you gently pour the answer into your nostril, permitting it to empty via the decrease nostril. Here’s a visible demonstration of this Kriya approach.


Trataka is a cleaning meditation approach the place you fixate your gaze on a single object, often a lit candle. In Kriya yoga, this system is finished to strengthen the attention muscle tissues and enhance imaginative and prescient. Nonetheless, it additionally has many different advantages, corresponding to boosting focus and reminiscence, reducing coronary heart charge, and reducing stress and nervousness ranges.

Trataka is essentially the most easy approach in Kriya yoga. Sit in entrance of a lit candle (about an arm’s size away and at eye degree), then take a look at the flame with out blinking for 10 to fifteen seconds. Consider the higher a part of the flame the place it shines the brightest.

Shut your eyes and spot if the picture reappears in your thoughts’s eye. Then, repeat the method 3 instances, growing the period to as much as 1 minute every time.


Nauli is an belly train, often known as ‘stomach-churning.’ It internally massages the belly muscle tissues, cleansing the digestive organs and small gut and enhancing digestion. There are a number of variations of Nauli, however when you’re new to Kriya yoga, I like to recommend beginning with this one.

Stand with the ft hip-width distance aside. Bend barely ahead out of your hips and take a deep inhale to organize. Pull your navel into the backbone on the exhale to interact Uddiyana Bandha (belly power lock). Maintain for so long as you may, then gently launch and breathe in. Repeat a number of extra instances.


Dhauti is essentially the most invasive Kriya because it induces vomiting. It entails quickly consuming a considerable amount of salted water, which evokes the urge to vomit. The aim of Dhauti in Kriya yoga is to wash the complete digestive tract. Nonetheless, it additionally helps enhance the respiratory tract, ears, and eyes.


Basti, often known as Vasti Kriya, tones the muscle tissues within the decrease stomach, however its particular goal is to cleanse the colon and enormous gut. For this system, you employ an enema to flush the colon with water (and typically herbs). You then maintain the liquid in for 5-Half-hour earlier than releasing it out.

Is Kriya Yoga Harmful?

When practiced appropriately below the steering of an skilled Kriya instructor, all the Kriya methods are protected. Thus, search a trusted and educated guru or instructor if you wish to study them.

Many yoga instructor coaching programs train you the right way to follow these methods safely. In case you’re fascinated by studying extra about yoga generally, this may very well be a superb strategy to study kriya yoga, as you’ll be guided via them for the complete course period (sometimes 20 to 40 days). Nonetheless, affirm that kriya yoga is roofed in your course, as not all TTCs train it.

Remaining Ideas: What Are Kriyas In Yoga?

For hundreds of years, yogis within the east have believed kriyas to be an integral a part of every day yoga follow. Whereas they can assist you obtain inside peace and union with cosmic consciousness, in addition they have many priceless well being advantages related to trendy life.

Have you ever tried Kriya yoga earlier than? What did you consider it?

Positive Recharge
Positive Recharge
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