Yoga Sequences

This Yoga Sequence Blends Energy Work with Asana

These 12 Energy Medicine Yoga movements will leave you feeling balanced and full of life.

I found Energy Medicine (EM) two decades ago during a particularly dark period in my life. I was reeling from the collapse of my yoga studio and was in the throes of an unhealthy romantic relationship. I’d been practicing and teaching yoga for seven years, but I only had a vague understanding of energy. Even with my regular practice, I felt stuck, unhappy, and ungrounded. In a spark of synchronicity, two friends introduced me to the work of Donna Eden, a leading author and teacher in the field of Energy Medicine.

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MARK KURODA

Listen to Donna Eden on The Yoga Show podcast.

Energy Medicine aims to rebalance the body’s energy systems to facilitate healing and vitality. Western medicine still cannot measure these subtle energies, but based on quantum physics and client experiences, Eden, and her thousands of students and teachers, believe that life-force imbalances are the root cause of illness—and that working with the body’s energy fields can influence the function, growth, and repair of cells, tissue, and organs. Eden, who says she can see things like auras, says, “Changing impaired energy patterns may be the most efficient, least invasive way to improve the vitality of [the physical body] and psyche.” Once I began adding Eden’s Energy Medicine techniques into my own yoga practice, my spiritual, mental, and physical well-being increased exponentially.

As the creator of Energy Medicine Yoga, I help my students find balance, calm, and healing by combining EM and yoga. My approach weaves yoga practices with varied EM tools including acupressure, vocalizations, tracing, and tapping to ground and strengthen the body, clear the mind, balance the endocrine system, boost the immune system, and help you heal from anything—simply by balancing energies in the body.

See also 3 Tricks from Energy Medicine Yoga to Improve Digestion

Methodology

Every EMYoga class starts with a two-minute Wake Up to get your energy moving in its most beneficial patterns. The rest of the session includes the five transformative movements of EMYoga: hang, squat, thump, hold, and weave. Each of these actions complements and supports the whole body and offers a way to balance your energy systems. They also assist the crucial practice of processing past and present emotions—which is important because unprocessed emotions have been linked to depression, heart disease, and lowered immunity.

Hangs

Examples: Full standing or seated forward bends, along with expansive poses such as Urdhva Hastasana (Upward Salute). 

Benefit: Hangs stretch and extend your body—the opposite of squats and contraction poses.

Squats

Examples: Malasana (Garland Pose) and High Lunge. 

Benefit: With hangs, squats help you explore folding and unfolding to notice oppositional forces in your body and energy systems. Squatting massages your internal organs and helps you cultivate better posture and balance by keeping your hips supple.

See also Energy Medicine Yoga: An Energy Release Trick for Lasting Headache Relief

Thumps

Examples: Tapping specific places on your body such as the thymus (the gland located behind your sternum and between your lungs).

Benefit: Thumps awaken energy and also stimulate your immune system.

Holds

Examples: Hugging and pressing techniques, such as Cradling the Baby—a Tadasana (Mountain Pose) variation that combines a standing, swaying self-hug with folding into Uttanasana (Standing Forward Bend)—or Crown Pull, where you massage your head with your fingertips.

Benefit: Based on acupressure and massage, holds trace specific pathways on the body in a particular order to help soothe, redirect, and re-pattern energy systems in order to help clear blockages.

Weaves

Examples: Parsva Prasarita Padottanasana (Revolved WideLegged Standing Forward Fold) variation with dynamic arm movements; Happy Baby Pose variation with crossed ankles and one arm wrapped around the other.

Benefit: The crossover pattern provides expansion and contraction in the body. It is crucial to health and well-being because it engages both hemispheres of the brain to stimulate both sides of the body. Through these movements, our bodies hone the ability to carry out the most integrated functions, such as processing information, thinking coherently, and walking.

The Wake Up

Warm-up with these four movements.

The Wake Up

The Four Thumps

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Brooks Freehill

Make a fist or press your first 2 fingers and thumb together into a little beak shape. Tap on acupressure kidney point 27 (shown, right). Then lightly strike the other points shown 5–10 times.

See also Poses for Your Kidney 

Cross Crawl

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Brooks Freehill

March in place. As your right knee rises, strike it with your right palm. Immediately reground your right foot. Now, lift your left knee and strike it with your left palm. Repeat this cycle 10–12 times. Next, do 12 crossover marches with each hand slapping the opposite knee.

See also Poses for Your Knees

Hook Up

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Brooks Freehill

Put your right middle finger in your belly button and your left middle finger at your third eye (between your eyebrows). With both hands, gently push in and pull up. Take 3 breaths, inhaling through your nose and exhaling through your mouth.

See also Chakra Tune-Up: Intro to the Ajna

The Practice

This 12-pose Energy Medicine Yoga sequence will help you feel balanced and clear.

Healing Practice

Crown Pull

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Brooks Freehill

With both hands, press your fingertips into the center of your forehead. With strong pressure, pull your hands away from each other toward your temples. Continue this along the top of your head (where a center part of your hair would be) until you reach the back of your neck.

See also Crown Chakra Tune-Up Practice

Spinal Flush

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Brooks Freehill

With your fingertips, press down the back of your neck and along both sides of your spine. Draw your hands up over your shoulders from back to front. Next, place your fingertips at sternum height, then move them to the sides of your chest or, if possible, along the back of your rib cage. Then massage your thumbs down either side of your spine to your lower back. With downward strokes, brush your back 3 times.

See also Let’s Twist Again

Calf Clear in Buddha Konasana (Bound Angle Pose)

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Brooks Freehill

Sit with your feet slightly apart, knees out to the sides. Using your thumb and fingertips, massage up your Achilles tendon toward your calf muscle. Continue this deep massage up the widest, fleshiest part of your calf. Repeat on the other side.

See also Bound Angle Pose

Blowing Out The Candle

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Brooks Freehill

Squat with a rolled-up blanket or mat under your heels. Hug your arms around your knees. Inhale, bowing your head down. Look up, making a whoooo sound as you exhale. Think about something you’re afraid of and visualize yourself blowing out a candle, affirming that you have the courage to be in the dark or unknown. Do this 3 times.

See also Six Different Views on Breathing in Yoga

Tabletop To Balasana (Child’s Pose) And Mula Bandha (Root Lock)

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Brooks Freehill

Come to Tabletop, keeping your spine in a neutral position. Inhale, then exhale, lowering your hips to your heels. Inhale, and return to Tabletop. Do this 3 times. Practice Mula Bandha (Root Lock) by lightly activating your pelvic floor muscles. On the exhalation, sit back on your heels and engage the bandha by drawing your sitting bones toward each other as you press them down. Repeat at least 3 times.

See also Shiva Rea Gets Real About the Root Lock: A Woman’s Guide to Mula Bandha

Child’s Pose, Variation

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Brooks Freehill

Start in Child’s Pose. On an inhalation, lift up to stand on your knees with your arms stretched overhead. Exhale, and weave your arms by crossing them back and forth in front of your body as you release back to Child’s Pose. Inhale to Tabletop. Exhale to Child’s Pose. Repeat 3 times. Feel your breath and energy moving within you like a wave.

See also Find Comfort in Child’s Pose

Bean With Head Heal

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Brooks Freehill

From Child’s Pose, rock forward and walk your elbows about 6 inches in front of your shoulders. Rest the heels of your hands on your cheekbones with your palms over your eye sockets. Breathe here for as long as feels good. Then, lift your head a few inches, and press your thumbs into the inside corners of your eyes where they meet your nose. This is the first point on the bladder meridian, which helps flush your kidneys. Hold here, and breathe for several moments. Release back to Child’s Pose. Bring your hands into fists behind you to deeply massage your kidneys (at your low back, just below your bottom ribs), which stimulates and cleanses them.

See also Child’s Pose

Sasangasana, Variation (Rabbit Pose)

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Brooks Freehill

From Child’s Pose, lift your torso so that you can ground the crown of your head on your mat. Cup your hands over your heels. Massage your heels and the bottoms of your feet to release stress stored in your body. Then, press into your heels with your fingertips and pull your body back. (Hold behind your knees if that feels better). Stretch your spine from top to bottom, then release into Child’s Pose.

See also Springtime Yoga Practice

Triple Warmer Rock

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Brooks Freehill

Lower onto your belly. With your hands, make a cradle to rest your forehead. Rock your hips from side to side. This calms the part of the triple warmer meridian that runs through your abdomen, affecting how you process stress. Stimulating it like this can ease the fight-flightfreeze response.

See also A Yoga Sequence to Heal Your Bladder and Kidney

Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose)

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Brooks Freehill

Bring your hands below your shoulders, and slowly start to lift your torso using your back muscles to curl into a backbend before engaging your arms. Engage your glutes and leg muscles. Hold for 3–5 breaths. Release down to your belly with your head in your hands, and rock your hips from side to side.

See also Begin with the Baby Backbends: Cobra Pose

Salabhasana (Locust Pose)

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Brooks Freehill

Lie on your belly. Hold your arms either straight out in front of you, out to your sides, or along your body with palms facing out. Lift up through your arms, raising your head, neck, and upper back. Engage your leg and glute muscles to lift both legs from the floor. Hold for 5 breaths. Return to the floor with your head on your hands, and rock your hips from side to side.

See also Learn to Backbend Better: Locust Pose

Ustrasana, Variation (Camel Pose)

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Brooks Freehill

Stand on your knees and lift your heart center. Bring your hands into Triple Warmer/Heart Mudra (thumbs in your heart center, fingertips in the hollow at the base of your throat). Press your hips forward in line with your knees. Extend your right arm up, over your head, then behind you to reach your right foot. With your thumb on the outside of your ankle and index finger on the inside, squeeze your Achilles tendon. Hold for 3–5 breaths. Release, then repeat on the other side. Repeat this cycle 1–2 times.

See also 7 Steps to Master Camel Pose (Ustrasana)

Study Energy Medicine Yoga with Lauren

In YJ’s online course Energy Medicine Yoga: Transformation Through the Subtle Body, renowned energy healer and Eden Energy Medicine pioneer Donna Eden and Energy Medicine Yoga creator Lauren Walker lead an eight-week training that will shift longstanding patterns in your underlying energy, which affects your mind, body, and spirit. Through simple tools and practices that blend energy work with yoga, you will learn how to activate your innate healing for greater balance, vitality, and well-being. Find out more and sign up today!