According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, every organ in the body is associated with one of the five elements
: fire, water, earth, metal, and wood. Out of these elements, fire is associated with the heart and signifies passion, vitality, and power. When you are filled with passionate emotions like love and rage, can’t you feel hot and powerful sensations in your chest?
What Causes Fire Energy?
Simply stated, fire energy is caused by hot emotions and stress. The heart is what processes our emotions—from the ones that arise naturally within us to the ones that we feel given to us from outside influences.
That fiery energy that the body has works best for our health when it travels to and gets stored in the lower abdomen
, known as dahn-jon or “energy center.” When too much fire lingers in the chest, it causes one to store stressful energy leading to shortness of breath and even chest pain. Even worse, when fire energy goes to the head, it causes headaches & migraines, tinnitus, dry eyes & mouth, brain fog and an overall sense of imbalance.
What is Fire Energy Management?
For our bodies to feel healthy and in balance, fire energy must go down from the heart to the lower belly (dahn-jon). To accomplish that, we must learn to move our fire energy
down when it arises. There are two ways to go about this: (1) control fiery emotions like love, anger, rage, and jealousy from even arising in the first place, OR (2) learn techniques to help move that fire down to the dahn-jon without trying to suppress emotions. The first option isn’t easy, and quite frankly, would make our lives dry and boring. The second option, however, can be easily implemented into our daily lives so that we can manage the fire to go down from the heart.
Here are five exercises to send fire energy from the heart down to the lower abdomen, dah-jon.
1. Lie down comfortably preferably on the floor with a yoga mat so your spine is straighter than on a bed, and place your palms on your lower abdomen directly above your navel.
2. Take a deep inhale through your nose and expand your belly as you breathe in for a count of 10 seconds.
3. Hold your breath at the top of that breath for 3 seconds before exhaling slowly out through your nose for another count of 10 seconds, as your belly deflates.
4. Hold your breath at the bottom for 3 seconds before repeating this process.
5. Try doing Belly Breathing 10 times.
*NOTE: The key here is to exaggerate the expanding and compressing of your abdomen as much as you can while you breathe slowly.
1. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and placed parallel to each other. Bend your knees slightly about 10 degrees.
2. With your shoulders and arms relaxed, gently tap with your palms your lower abdomen around your navel. Tap there for 2 minutes. Breathe out to release stressful, stuck energy.
3. While taping, move your palms up in a straight line until you land at your chest. Tap the area around your heart, lungs, and shoulders for 2 minutes. Breathe out to release stressful, stuck energy.
4. While tapping, move your palms down in a straight line until you hand back at your lower abdomen. Tap there for 2 minutes. Repeat this tapping sequence 3 times, for a total of 12 minutes between your lower abdomen and chest.
*NOTE: It’s important to focus on your exhale to release stressful fire energy in your heart and chest.
1. Lie down comfortably on the floor. Raise your legs up with your knees bent at 90 degrees. Flex your toes in towards you.
2. Hold your legs at about a fist-width’s distance from each other, and place your hands on your abdomen directly above the navel.
3. Take a deep inhale through your nose and expand your belly as you breathe in for a count of 10 seconds.
4. Hold your breath at the top of that breath for 3 seconds before exhaling slowly out through your nose for another count of 10 seconds, as your belly deflates.
5. Hold your breath at the bottom for 3 seconds before repeating this process.
6. Try holding Sleeping Tiger for 5 minutes.
*NOTE: If your body shakes while holding this posture, it’s a good sign! It means the energy channels in your legs are releasing their blockage and opening. Don’t worry‒let your body shake and heal itself.
1. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and placed parallel to each other.
2. Bend your knees slightly about 10 degrees. Place your hands on your abdomen directly above your navel.
3. Pull in your stomach muscles from your navel as far back as you can as if you’re trying to touch your spine.
4. Push your stomach muscles out from your navel as far forward as you can as if expanding your belly like a balloon.
5. Repeat this process in a rhythmic manner for 3 minutes.
*NOTE: The pace should feel moderately fast like someone is massaging your intestines—not too fast, not too slow.
1. Lie down on your stomach on a yoga mat on the floor with your palms placed down next to your armpits. Your ankles should be relaxed onto the floor.
2. Gently inhale and lift your upper body and look up at the ceiling. Feel the stretching of your abdominal muscles. Hold your breath for 3 seconds at the top of the stretch.
3. Exhale as you relax your body down.
4. Repeat this sequence 10 times.
*NOTE: It’s important to feel your abdomen stretching as you do cobra posture. Stretching the abdomen will open pathways for fire energy to move downward.
At any point throughout the day when you feel an overflow of hot, fiery energy in your chest and head, try these exercises to cool your brain and bring that heat down to your lower belly. Prolonged periods of holding heat in your lower belly can significantly improve your health from many modern day ailments.