The basic principles of Mula Bhanda
In yoga there are three classic areas of focused potential and dormant energy in the human body: Pelvis – Mula Solar – Uddiyana Throat – Jalandhara The pelvic or mula region is the most powerful of the three areas where there is an abundance of potential energy. This energy is generally scattered and used intermittently for sexual acts. Asana practice is a wonderful way to cultivate and use this energy for physical strength and mental clarity. The powerful technique used to awaken and direct this energy is called the Mula Bandha.
The word ‘bandha’ is defined as ‘a seal’ – to seal within, interconnect the inner systems. The bandhas are engaged physically, but their effects are on the overall energy and awareness levels of the mind. The Mula Bandha used in yoga asanas has many benefits. The Mula Bandha works synergistically. Engaging the ‘core lock’ enables the asanas to be held longer, protecting the low back muscles, making the practice of asanas safer. When the Mula Bandha is fully engaged, dormant potential energy is activated into the conscious network resulting in more support in the core lock. The distal muscle groups relax drawing the body energy levels from the periphery to the center.
Females engage the Mula Bandha by exhaling, contracting the muscles between the pubic bone and the tailbone, and lightly drawing the perineum up and in toward the abdomen. Pull the pelvic floor up toward the spine and feel the lower, deep abdominal muscles engage. Initially the anus and genitals need to be contracted, but with practice over time these areas become relaxed and the contraction is isolated to the perineum (the space between the anus and genitals). Specifically draw the opening of the cervix up and in.
Males engage the Mula Bandha by lifting up the space an inch above the perineum, forming a triangle. The perineal space becomes indented, domed, and sucked in and up, creating empty space for the front of the pubic bone and sacrum to move toward each other. The intensity of the Mula Bandha contraction can be carried from 15 – 100 percent and it may be held for as long as possible.