Contains Barnett Formula™ Centering as featured in Pilates Style Magazine!
2013 Nautilus Silver Award Winner!
Larkin Barnett links her original techniques with the chakras-an ancient, non-Western concept of the seven physical and spiritual centers in the body. The Chakra Rocking Massage she teaches is a movement meditation that awakens the chakra centers and offers a practical, user-friendly way to relax. Reminiscent of being rocked in a cradle, these repetitive, gentle motions are soothing and tension-releasing.
Muscular tightness can begin in the mind. The root cause may be illness, surgery, accidents, abuse, emotional trauma, daily stress, poor movement habits, or even one’s choice of sport or fitness. The Chakra Rocking Massage clears and opens the chakras, causing energy to move more freely throughout the body. Hence, muscular tension dissipates, and tissue health, suppleness, and posture are improved.
To this key exercise, Larkin adds simplified breathing techniques drawn from both Eastern and Western traditions as well as visualizations. Likening the experience to creating a favorite meal, she provides “recipe cards” for each exercise, focusing on the ingredients of color, location, life lesson, natural elements, physical senses, emotions, and affirmations. Strengthening our mind/body connection in this way is the ultimate immune booster, improving circulation for better tissue nutrition and metabolism. The body acts like a natural pharmacy as it flushes away waste products more thoroughly.
Altogether, the tools in Practical Centering can lead to a life of more vitality and ease. It’s a great little book to pack in your suitcase or back pocket. The exercises take only minutes and can be done easily at home, at work, or wherever you happen to be.
Sometimes we need to bring ourselves back down to earth. Practical Centering: Exercises to Energize Your Chakras for Relaxation, Vitality, and Health is a new age discussion of discovering greater vitality and spirit in one's life, embracing the spirit and drives within oneself, the chakras, on a daily basis. Practical Centering is a straightforward and much recommended pick for followers of new age philosophy, highly recommended.
— James A. Cox, Midwest Book Review
Practical Centering enhances physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual balance with innovative breathing techniques and empowering exercises. It provides an instant vacation in this hectic world, enabling us to elevate our energy, relax our body, strengthen our core, and quiet our mind.
— Larkin Barnett, DailyOm
"This easy-to-use self-help title will appeal to readers looking for stress-reduction techniques. Meditators, students of mindfulness, yoga and Pilates aficionados, and those interested in mind-body topics will also find much of interest. Recommended."
— Janet Tapper Library Journal, Univ. of Western States Lib., Portland, OR
Practical Centering is truth in advertising. I can’t recall reading a more practical, accessible book on this sort of subject matter.
— The Magical Buffet
Dancer, movement therapist, and Pilates specialist Barnett has created a true “minutes-a-day” regimen to improve fitness, vitality, and wellness. Drawing on her decades of experience (and her work with children), she has not only come up with an easy, practical series of exercises, but she has also presented them in a fun, colorful, and easy-to-understand package. Coincidentally, I pulled a groin muscle just before I started to review this book. Carefully practicing her Rocking Massage Exercises was one of the most soothing things I did to deal with the incapacitating injury.
A main focus of the book is learning to breathe correctly. It’s not a new idea, but her use of the images of large, colorful balloons placed within the body to teach these techniques is very new, and very helpful.
She ties both the Rocking Massages and Balloon Breathing to the seven major chakras, creating a simple full body workout. She adds sections on slow stretching and core abdominal strengthening to complete this deceptively simple regimen. This one is truly a gem. It takes the “should” out of exercising and replaces it with fun and self-nurturing. Don’t let your customers miss this one!
— Anna Jedrziewski, Retailing Insight
The net effect of Larkin’s work is an integrative adaption of breathing strategies, from both an eastern and a western tradition. Larkin teaches breathing like a dance teacher, with inspiration, humor, and artistry. To read her exercises is to be coached into a kind of centeredness where healing is possible.
— Dr. Greg Loewen, Pulmonary Specialist
Larkin presents an easy-to-read and follow set of exercises that combine visualization, breath and movement that can make a difference in our physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. Her simple set of exercises can help one to relax, loosen up and bring life once again to our daily life. The trick is in her combining mind with visualization, spirit with one’s breath and body with movement to return us to wholeness which is our natural state of being.
— Robert Volkmann, MD
Larkin’s insights into the mind-body connection are profound and very practical. I feel her book offers great hands-on techniques as well as insightful visualizations to encompass the whole person. I thoroughly enjoyed the easy-to-read and concise explanation of her life-changing routine. You can start small and have big results. I would highly recommend this book to those who are seeking to make great strides in their life.
— Brian W. Wright, Fitness Manager, Canyon Ranch
While a young dancer struggling with stamina issues, Larkin's life-altering realization of the importance of breathing properly could well have remained information simply applied to her own well-being. But instead, she has ever since been on a path dedicated to improving all of our lives through her inspired knowledge of strengthening both body and spirit.
— Steven Caras, Dancer, Photographer, Motivational Speaker and subject of the new Public Television documentary, Steven Caras: See Them Dance
For anyone on a mind, body, spirit journey, this flawlessly written book will help you reach your destination. Larkin gives the best explanation of the chakras that I have heard or seen in print. Larkin has taken the mystery out of the chakras and made them practical! The recipe cards will be invaluable for learning the chakras and incorporating them into breathing, rocking massages, stretching, and color meditation. And what a brilliant idea to add color to the core foundation formula exercises! What Larkin has done here is create a new movement-based chakra paradigm. The incredible colorful visual imagery makes it easy to follow and a joy to practice.
Practical Centering certainly lives up to its title. Self massage and using your breathing muscles more efficiently improves your overall health by purifying the bloodstream and reducing toxic build-up. Breath training is essential for the brain, nerves, glands, and organs. By practicing the principles in this book, you will strengthen your body and decrease stress and factors related to premature aging. You will also learn quick ways to reduce muscular tension, mental sluggishness and emotional anxiety. In addition, expect improvements in sleep patterns and complexion as you boost the immune system. Enjoy the benefits as your energy is increased and you soothe your spirit, becoming more emotionally balanced, mindful and mentally fit. This is a book you must have if you want to transform your body and color your world. Enjoy your journey!
— Jeannie Smith L.M.T.