Our energy is a pure life force that is within our control to use at our will. Understanding this concept and then using this force can enhance our ability to perform under pressure.
The idea is to work to engage all our energy centers with the body rather than just the mind where nervous tension can come from scattered undisciplined thoughts. We want to allow our body to do what it was conditioned and trained to do and use our mind to support the action!
The root lock or Mula Bandha is a term used that describes the act of bringing the energy from the base of the spine up through to the top of the head. This awakens the power centers or chakras along the spine and ignites energy centers.
In sport we can use this concept to drop into our body and use our minds constructively to enhance our ability to perform. We do this by grounding, connecting and directing our energy.
Here is a tool you can use to turn your pressure into your power:
- Get grounded: Lie, sit or stand to do this. My preferred position is to sit with my feet in a diamond shape in front of me and the soles of the feet together. You can elevate the hips to make this easier.
- Connect: Close the eyes. Start by slightly tightening or engaging the muscles from your feet right to the top of your head with an in breath through the nose. Make the breath come from the back of the throat rather than the nostrils. This need not be long but around a count of 4. Release all tension with a strong exhale through the mouth making the HA sound, again for a count of 4. You can repeat this up to 3 times. It’s important not to expend a ton of energy just engage vitality. The goal is to “feel” the body awaken.
- Take note: Relax and scan the body with easy breathing just bringing in an awareness of the physical body, acknowledge it’s presence.
- Direct Energy: Next take a slow inhale through the back of the throat and tighten the muscles in the low belly, rectum and sex organ. This is called the root lock or Mula Bandha. Keep this engaged with a straight spine, chin slightly tilted to allow the neck to be long. Hold the breath with ease and shoot the energy up along the spine and to the top or crown of the head. Release the breath and the tightening. Do this once or 3 times max. Be sure to start at the base of the spine and direct the energy through the belly, chest, neck, head and crown of the head. Make this an internal visual.
- Move energy: Open your eyes. Complete by moving the pelvis, legs, torso, shoulder and head however it feels good to move the energy around. Sit for a few seconds scanning the inner world and see if you can sense the energy. If you don’t that’s totally fine, its not required just kinda cool.
- Finish by taking a breath in and lifting the arms over head and shaking off any excess tension or energy.
You are now grounded in the present moment, connected to your body and able to direct your energy. This is using your mental energy of focus to work with the energy of the body. You have trained and conditioned to perform for this moment. Enjoy!