Muladhara Chakra Opener—Shalabhasana—Locust

Complete Yoga Breath
with Sound!

All Chakra

Click images below for
Root Chakra postures.

The Wheel
The Wheel

Half Locust
Half Locust
Full Locust
or Grasshopper
(same page as
Half Lotus)

Head to Knee Pose
Head to
Knee Pose

Yoga Relaxation
Half LocustShalabh (= locust,
aka Grasshopper)

This image shows the goal for this powerful posture. The position looks like a locust when it is resting. There are preliminary exercises below that will help you to attain this goal in time. This posture is sometimes called The Grasshopper, in case you run across that in your search.

If a link from the 1st Root Chakra (Muladhara) series brought you to this page, this posture is part of that group (see right list with images). This one is also quite specific, because it releases tension from the lower abdomen, legs and feet. This helps to open the Chakra system. However, these postures can be done by anyone for many other reasons. The image above is of my teacher, Eugenia (if you have been to other pages, you know that this site is dedicated to her memory).

A link to return to the Chakra series is given below.

Preliminary Exercises for The Locust

It is a good idea to always work your way up to the goal instead of trying to push yourself to do something right away. This works for every part of life, and it is the way of Yoga. Moderation is the key word for everything.

Half Locust—Ardha Shalabhasana

Half LocustThis first image is for beginners. It is the Half-Locust. If you have never done the Locust before, try this first to loosen up the muscles you have never used in this way previously. It will make the final posture much easier.

This is a very powerful stretch. If you take your time doing this one and wait for your body to be strong enough for the final movement with both legs, you will feel the benefits even more. I harp on this only because I have seen people hurt themselves pushing this posture too fast. There is no need to rush. Take your time.

    Detailed Instructions

  • Lie on your stomach with your right ear against the floor.
  • Stretch your arms out (as Eugenia shows here) with your palms flat on the floor.
  • Inhale deeply and then lift your left leg straight up (even if it is only slightly off the floor).
  • Hold your breath for a moment and stretch your entire leg up as high as you can.
  • Exhale and let your leg sink down.
  • After a few deep breaths, repeat the same procedure twice and then relax your forehead on your hands and visualize that each deep exhalation removes toxins from your kidneys.
  • Repeat all of the same movements with your left ear flat on the floor and lift your right leg. Repeat 3 times on each side.

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Half LocustThis is the goal, the full Locust. This is a powerful Yoga posture. It might seem quite difficult at first, but you will be amazed at how quickly your body adapts to this new use of muscles.
  • Lie on your stomach with your chin on the floor. Inhale deeply.
  • With straight elbows, stretch your arms down under your body (as shown in image above) with your palms facing up against your pelvic floor and upper inner thighs. Stretch your feet out so your toes are pointing to whatever is behind you.
  • Concentrate on your kidneys. Visualize them in your back above your waistline, on both sides.
  • Inhale deeply, gather all of your strength through the life energy of Prana in your kidneys, and lift both legs straight up with the help of your palms. Hold your breath for a short moment.
  • Exhale and let your legs sink down. Relax with your cheeks or forehead on your hands below your face.

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  • While you do the Locust, you should feel the weight of your abdomen heavy on the floor, nothing else. Your arms are stretched with your elbows completely straight and the palms of your hands are pushing your thighs up.
  • This posture is easier if you tense the muscles of your buttocks and thighs. Your legs should be touching at the ankles, knees and thighs.
  • Let your inhalation and exhalation be felt in the abdomen beneath you. Breathe slowly. Focus on the energy of the Root Chakra and how all energy is directed to that area of your body.
  • Repeat to yourself: “My kidneys are cleansed.” Repeat entire sequence 3 times.


This specifically affects the bladder, prostate gland, and everything in the groin and lower abdomen from the blood flowing down from the toes to the groin and the lower back. If you want to have even more of an effect, place your fists or fingers right above your groin, high up on the inner thighs and push your thighs up higher. Place your chin on the floor to get higher still. This is great for any problems in the areas the Root Chakra is connected to.

Due to the air pressing against the lungs in this position, the cells in the ribcage are activated and the lungs become more elastic as a result. This is also beneficial to build up the heart and diaphragm muscles, cleanse the kidneys, and strengthen the thigh muscles, back and hips. This is considered one of the most important Yoga postures. It is pinpointed for bringing the blood to the kidney areas.

If you want to return to the next Chakra series, you can continue from this page to the 3rd Chakra—Manipura.

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