Colour Therapy can be traced back to ancient civilizations in India, Greece, Egypt and China. It is based on a theory that each hue of colour can be used to heal emotional and physical traumas. Each colour has a particular wavelength on the light spectrum and affects different parts of your brain. Violet and blue have faster frequencies and shorter wavelengths so they vibrate more compared with red, which has a longer wavelength.
Have you ever noticed the powerful effect colours can have on a person? They can stimulate your energy or dull your senses. Muted colours are often found to be more relaxing while bright colours can have an uplifting effect. Colour can even influence your moods, emotions and perceptions.
Since Shala has become infused with colour, you may have noticed your gaze settling on specific areas of the walls. Are you drawn more to the fiery red at the bottom? Does it give you the fuel to move more fiercely through a Vinyasa Flow? Or do you find yourself drawn to the calming violet near the top? Does it quieten your mind and help you connect more to your higher self?
Certain shades of colour are said to help balance the different chakras along with the physical and emotional systems associated with them.
Red is a symbol of strength, courage and passion. As it is warmer than the other colours, it can increase circulation, blood pressure, pulse rate and overall energy. The Root Chakra (Muladhara), located at the base of the spine is associated with this colour. Working with the root chakra and the colour red can help ground the body, connecting us to our sense of safety, security and stability.
Orange is said to enhance creativity. It is related to the Sacral Chakra (Svadhistana) which is associated with our emotions, sensuality and pleasure. Visualizing with the colour orange can help to create a healthy balance between our mind and body. Orange has also been known to stimulate joy and alleviate depression.
Yellow is a powerful colour that can bring more light into your life. It is associated with the Solar Plexus Chakra (Manipura) and is said to hold our personal power. Working with the colour yellow is said to encourage a positive mind set, well being and feelings of abundance.
Green is linked to our Heart Chakra (Anahata) and is considered the centre of our chakras and the core of our true self. It is associated with balance and healing and is where we source our gratitude and compassion. The colour green also connects us to new growth and our love for the earth. It can help to balance our energy and nervous system, lifting our mood and bringing greater focus to our mind.
Blue can have a cooling effect on our mind and bodies. It is associated with the Throat Chakra (Vishuddha) and connects our heart with our mind, helping us to communicate and find our Truth. It can be called upon to help quiet the mind and express ourselves authentically.
Indigo is associated with our Third-Eye Chakra (Ajna) and is related to vision and perception. It is so calming that it can have a sedative affect. Working with Indigo can help us to develop more clarity, discernment, wisdom and inner peace.
Violet helps to slow down our nervous systems and can foster deep relaxation. It is associated with the Crown Chakra (Sahasrara) which is located just above the crown of our heads. The Crown Chakra bridges the right and left hemispheres of our brains and can help us to foster more awareness and transcendence. It has the power to lift us out of the muddy waters and help us to connect with our higher selves.
Next time you practice, notice where your drishti lands and how it makes you feel. With awareness and intention, we can use to colour to shift our energy, restore balance and find harmony within.