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Root Lock

Discussion in 'Mindbody Blogs (was Practitioner's Corner)' started by quasar731, May 19, 2012.

  1. quasar731

    quasar731 Well known member

    Healing greetings everyone! :)

    In one of Monte Hueftle's postings, he talks about a Root Lock process but does not seem to elaborate much on the process. Do we have anything in this forum that explains Root Lock inmore detail? Thank you and have a wonderful weekend!
  2. spiralgirl1

    spiralgirl1 Peer Supporter

    Hi Quasar,
    Monte H sees the Root Lock as a fundamental part of his Master Practice and he gives full instructions in his Book/ Downloads etc that you can purchase from his website.
    He uses a particular breathing pattern with his instructions.

    In fact the Root Lock is comes from Yoga practices and is also known asMula Bandha.
    I have copied some info from a yoga site below that gives some idea.....
    Mula bandha is one of the three “locks” used in yoga to locally contain the flow of energy or prana. The three bandhas are typically used in advanced pranayama but the
    mula bandha can also be effectively employed in asana practice. Mula bandha can be performed in a physical and external manner engaging the skeletal muscles; it can also be felt as a subtle and internal energetic process. Mula bandha should be practiced individually at first, and then it can be incorporated with the other bandhas, asanas, pranayamas and eventually mudras.

    To engage mula bandha, exhale and contract the muscles between the pubic bone and the tailbone, pulling the perineum up in towards the abdomen. As you pull the pelvic floor up, feel the lower deep abdominal muscles engage and pull towards the spine. Initially you will need to contract the anus and the genitals, but over time work on relaxing these areas and isolate the perineum (the space between the anus and genitals). Mula bandha can be engaged from 15 to 100 percent of the contraction and can either be held for as long as possible or used by rhythmically engaging and releasing the contraction with the breath. Do not strain while holding, or hold the breath in or out when engaging mula bandha.

    Using mula bandha with yoga postures has many benefits. It helps build core body strength, enables you to hold the postures longer and makes the postures safer. Mula bandha also increases your energy and vitality, and improves concentration and mental clarity. Using mula bandha to support the asana from your core body allows the distal muscles to relax, enabling the body to use less energy to hold the posture.
    While using mula bandha with asana can increase core stability, it can only be fully engaged when the spine is straight and long. It is also difficult to feel and experience the energetic effects of this bandha when done with yoga postures, so it is recommended to first practice mula bandha in a seated meditation pose

    Hope that helps a little bit.. :)
  3. BruceMC

    BruceMC Beloved Grand Eagle

    What you describe as "mula bandha" sounds very much - if I'm not totally mistaken - as the same core control exercise that you do while practicing Pilates, which requires tensing your core, controlling the movements of your arms and/or legs, and self-consciously controlling your breathing in synchronization with those movements. After a while, that core control becomes second nature to you, so that you automatically pull in those same core muscles while doing other exercises like weight lifting or stretching or even running. I guess what you're doing is to integrate pranayama into all of your daily activities. This in turn has the benefit of creating good posture and, as Monte might put it, a "clean mind". I guess what you're doing is to exert conscious control over basically unconscious activities (breathe is a gateway activity because it's both conscious and automatic) and thereby activate your neocortex, which, of course, is part of the process of shifting your attention from pain originating in the hypothalamus and amygdala, which cancels out TMS. But, of course, that's just my spin on it.
  4. spiralgirl1

    spiralgirl1 Peer Supporter

    It is indeed the same muscle contraction as the pilates core exercises although the breathing is somewhat different I think.. and in yoga the 'root' can be connected to the root or base chakra energy.
    All rather fascinating how these things all link together....
    I have done pilates in the past but am now feeling it is maybe too 'physically' focused for me at the moment and I am planning to go to yoga. The movement, breathing, energy and more spiritual work in yoga feels the right thing for me now.. I want to do it for reasons other than 'strengthening my core'.
  5. BruceMC

    BruceMC Beloved Grand Eagle

    Sounds as if you can do Pilates or Yoga as ways to strengthen you core. But either one can be used to "strengthen your mind" too. Yoga, it seems to me, is much more body-mind than Pilates, however.
    spiralgirl1 likes this.
  6. quasar731

    quasar731 Well known member

    I do Pilates twice a week MorComm and I can tell you that Pilates is precise 'neuron to the fiber'. That is brain to the muscle. The Pilates breathing and the control of the core and pelvic muscles is different to the Yoga breathing. Nevertheless, in both, Pilates and Yoga one walks away having had 1 hour of brain oxygenation which results in a harmonious feeling of peace and balance within and without. I work with different types of Pilates equipment, like a reformer and the caddy, as well as other pieces of Pilates machines. I do not like the mat work of Pilates. Pilates uses a lot of resistance work with springs which my muscles so enjoy. In Pilates one learns to control the smallest of muscles, hence the word they use 'precision in movement'. This can only be done from the mind to the body, hence the expression 'neuron to the fiber'. And it really transforms the body alignment and makes one 'mindful' of the muscle-skeletal connections and how we move them.

    I also have done different types of Yoga for years and have enjoyed them immensely. Especially I like Iyengar yoga, it is slow and and I felt that I had more control than doing Ashtanga Yoga which moves fast, hence called 'power yoga'. Yoga is more 'meditative' and uses the Sunskrit exotic language. In addition, Yoga has a strong spiritual emphasis too, it encompasses meditation and even can have a religious emphasis. So the difference between Yoga and Pilates is that Pilates works very well to balance, body and mind without the strong spiritual emphasis. It is more like a bi-dimensional approach to physical activity.Yoga, which means 'union', uses a more tri-dimensional approach of body, mind and spirit.
  7. quasar731

    quasar731 Well known member

    Hi Spiralgirl,

    Many thanks for the note and the article about Root Lock. I went to Monte's website and even got his Master program.
    Have a great week!
    spiralgirl1 likes this.
  8. veronica73

    veronica73 Well known member

    I miss Pilates! I had done it a little at my gym about 10 years ago and then 90% of my PT exercises were Pilates. It's so hard for me to separate it in my mind from PT and the message that there was something structurally wrong with me so I gave it up at least for now.

    I also prefer the more meditative styles of yoga; I think my favorite is Kripalu yoga.
  9. quasar731

    quasar731 Well known member

    G'day Veronica...hmm... I think the association that was made of PT and Pilates is unfortunate. However, I empathize with you because I am also concerned about going back to Yoga again. So I took refuge in Pilates because I feel safe having a clinical coach working individually with me.

    I have never heard or done Kripalu yoga. I used to do Iyengar Yoga 4 times a week once upon a time and I so loved it. I did various courses and became very good at it so I was doing it on my own. However when I injured myself, I associated Yoga with pain. The challenging poses that I used to do without any issues before became painful. But, I decided that at some point when I feel it is the right time, I will giveYoga a go again but I will do it with a teacher. I am sure I lost physical form.

    Pilates, like yoga or like any other form of exercise is not here or there. However, attach to anything a perception and the feelings that go with it and Bingo! A neutral situation becomes very powerful whether positive or negative. Maybe this is something you could journal about...?

    I really like the quote of the Dalai Lama in your signature stressing the fact that 'there are no limits to how far we can go'. Professor Candece Pert says that to transform our perceptions it is a matter of changing the mind (our beliefs and attitudes) and the mind will change the brain (the physiological neural connections). If you enjoyed Pilates I cannot see why you could not enjoy it again but only you can make that call. This is just food for thought ;)
  10. veronica73

    veronica73 Well known member

    I did yoga for about 10 years before getting into Pilates so I see yoga as more of a spiritual practice/overall wellness practice. Iyengar yoga is very Pilates-like with a heavy focus on getting the pose perfect (at least that's how it was taught with the last Iyengar teacher I had). Kripalu is another type of hatha yoga, with more flowing poses (but slow flow) and an emphasis on compassion for ourselves. I think I do better with that mindset and in some ways that is actually harder for me.

    Glad you liked the Dalai Lama quote :) I am also a fan of Candace Pert, I have her guided meditation CD.
  11. quasar731

    quasar731 Well known member

    I am glad you enjoy Candace Pert. She has a very interesting story as a female scientist trying to make a mark in the world of science.

    I agree with you Veronica that Yoga is more geared to a spiritual practice. It is a very holistic discipline in essence. I remembered feeling absolute bliss as I completed the sessions. It was a very special moment of personal integration.

    I see Pilates as a more clinical discipline. It does not have the same message of integration or union of mind, body and spirit like Yoga does. Its emphasis is in the alignment and correction of the anatomic mechanics of the body.

    I must confess that I miss yoga but I am not ready yet to enter the practice. I admit that I am a tad reluctant because I have had 2 operations in my hip within the last 6 months. One was to repair a large labral (cartilage of the hip) tear in the right hip which I sustained on a fall. The other surgery was to shave bony spurs from the head of the femur which were formed also as a result of the lesion in the hip. It suffices to say that I have to be so discerning of what is TMS and what is post op recovery. The last hip operation was only last April.

    So, for the time being I just enjoy talking about Yoga and reminiscing about it. In a few months, when I have worked through the TMS program and feel more physically ready, I will certainly contemplate joining a good class. I do not think I can do it on my own as I did it before, at least not for a while.

    Have a terrific week!
  12. veronica73

    veronica73 Well known member

    Yes, Pilates was created to help rehab wounded soldiers in WWI so it's more on the physical level but I think anything done mindfully can be meditative.

    One of my major complaints with how yoga is taught right now is that the emphasis is often solely on asana--the physical poses of yoga. Asana is actually only one part of Yoga, which also includes breath work, meditation, non-violence, etc. I would say you are still doing yoga, you are just not doing asanas.

    Namaste :)
    Beach-Girl likes this.
  13. quasar731

    quasar731 Well known member

    Nice way to put it Veronica! Hey talking about asanas...what do you think about Chaya's asana for this picture? Does she not look peaceful and abiding? Not so at that age, she was a raging juvenile! I changed Chaya's picture. She is a bit grown up on this one but only 4 months old. I was telling Forest that she became a specialist at un-potting close to 100 kg plant pots.

    Namaste to you!
  14. veronica73

    veronica73 Well known member

    Dogs rule :)
  15. quasar731

    quasar731 Well known member

    I agree Veronica! They indeed rule! I heard a story a while ago about a family whose dog was very old and unfortunately was getting terribly sick (blind, incontinent and in pain). So the family took the dog to the Vet to put him to sleep. This was a terribly sad moment for the family and specially for the child who had to depart from such loving and loveable friend (his dog). The child asked the Vet why was it that dogs did not live long. The Vet said...' dogs somehow learn the biggest lesson in life, to 'truly love' very quickly and having done so they do not need longer lives. Contrary to dogs, we human beings need to live longer for it takes us a life time to learn to 'truly love' and sometimes we don't learn it.' A beautiful metaphor about our loving friends the canines. They can love, they do know about loyalty, they are always happy and celebrating life.
  16. BruceMC

    BruceMC Beloved Grand Eagle

    My friend Erin's lab-pit cross, Sheeba, is the greatest dog & came in 1st place in Basic Training too:

    Attached Files:

    veronica73 likes this.
  17. quasar731

    quasar731 Well known member

    Hi MorComm, that is one beautiful dog! What a darling face Sheeba has. My husband is of the notion that cross-breeds are healthier and more intelligent than pure breeds.

    Our daughter spends a lot of money on her two Australian bulldogs and the Jack Russell. It is always one thing or the other and so they end at the Vet's clinic with sometimes hefty bills. Granted that Chaya, Kharma (Chaya's mother) and Misha the Jack Russell are my daughter and her husband's children. They don't have kids to spend money so they do not shy away to care for their canine girls.

    I attach here a picture of Chaya and her mom Kharma. Chaya's good looks come from her father, an Aussie Bulldog with very symmetrical marks in her face. Kharma is very asymmetrical when it comes to her face marks, she is a most placid, obedient and loving dog. You can see it in her face. Whereas Chaya is goofy and sometimes she is like a bull in China shop. Her joy is to sit her 37 kgs' body on the lap of whoever is willing to have her. Nevertheless, she is also the sweetest tempered dog and very loving.

    Have a great weekend!

    Attached Files:

    veronica73 likes this.
  18. BruceMC

    BruceMC Beloved Grand Eagle

    Kharma and Chaya are very healthy looking with intelligent eyes too! Those high vet bills must be paying off. Sheeba is very affectionate, but protective like a Bull Terrier. She'll settle down and keep Erin company for a study-basket ball watching session:


    Seems to be a whole lab-pit cross cult here in the States. Wonder if you could breed them true? They seem to come in two flavors: either black like a lab or tan like a pit bull.
    Forest and veronica73 like this.
  19. quasar731

    quasar731 Well known member

    Pit bull terriers are now forbidden to breed here in Australia. There have been many attacks to people by pit bulls. Again there have been attacks by other dogs, so I do not think the pit bull is the issue. I think some breeds (like pit bulls) had bad press and then all dogs in that breed got thrown in the same basket. I believe that good training is what makes the difference in dogs. Cesar Millan the US 'dog wisperer' works with pit bulls very successfully. I assume that the cross-breed of Labrador being such a placid breed must influence other aspects of the pit bull too.
  20. BruceMC

    BruceMC Beloved Grand Eagle

    Pit bulls, if they're mistreated and taught to fight, are really aggressive and dangerous. However, if they're trained properly, as you say, they are excellent family pets though very protective of their owners. The key is proper training. No doubt, a bit of lab in a pit makes it much more docile than a Bull Terrier pure breed.

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