What is Kundalini Yoga ?

Kundalini Yoga is a powerful yogic tradition that is thousands of years old yet suited for today’s world, it’s challenges and it’s victories. It combines asana (postures) with pranayam (breath) and mantra (sacred sound). The word yoga means “to yoke, to unite.” Kundalini yoga balances the glandular system, strengthens the nervous system, and brings the mind, body and spirit into balance. Kundalini Yoga is also called the Yoga of Awareness. With regular practice, you become more aware of and live more from your authentic self. 

At Yoga West we teach Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan. For centuries, Kundalini Yoga was carefully handed down by oral tradition from master to disciple and was always kept secret. It was never taught openly until 1969 when Yogi Bhajan challenged this secrecy and brought it to the West and began teaching publicly. Yoga West is strongly connected with the international Kundalini Yoga community and the Kundalini Research Institute (KRI) to serve and share the legacy of Yogi Bhajan. We are dedicated to delivering the Teachings in their pure form, with the integrity befitting sacred Teachings. 

A Kundalini Yoga Class

A yoga class is 90 or 75 or 120 minutes and follows this structure:
• Opening chant to tune in
• Breathing exercises / warm-up exercises • Kriya (dynamic yoga set)
• Relaxation
• Meditation
• Closure 

We invite you to experience the class with bare feet. Closing your eyes during class will help you stay within and experience the class more intensely.  


The primary objective of Kundalini is to awaken the full potential of human awareness in each individual; that is, recognize our awareness, refine that awareness, and expand that awareness to our unlimited Self. Clear any inner duality, create the power to deeply listen, cultivate inner stillness, and prosper and deliver excellence in all that we do.
— Kundalini Research Institute (KRI)

quick Facts about kundalini yoga

  • The earliest known origin of Kundalini Yoga mention dates to the sacred Vedic collection of writings known as the Upanishads (c. 1,000 B.C. - 500 B.C.).
  • Yogi Bhajan brought Kundalini to the West in 1969.
  • It was never taught openly until 1969 when Yogi Bhajan challenged this secrecy and brought it to the West.
  • Yoga West is strongly connected with the international Kundalini Yoga community and the Kundalini Research Institute (KRI) to serve and share the legacy of Yogi Bhajan.
  • Kundalini literally means "coiled" and is represented by a metaphorical coiled snake at the base of your spine. The purpose of Kundalini practice is to uncoil your snake and release that energy within.
  • Your teacher will wear (mostly) white clothes and a head covering. White contains all colors; it is all-inclusive and radiant. White clothing and a head covering are a sign of respect for and help to contain and manage the powerful kundalini energy.

Introduction to Kundalini: The Yoga of Awareness by James McCrae