Practical Centering: Rocking Massage

Learn this centering technique that will bring you deep relaxation.

Woman resting on pillow


This material was reproduced by permission of Quest Books, the imprint of The Theosophical Publishing House ( from Practical Centering: Exercises to Energize Your Chakras for Relaxation, Vitality, and Health by Larkin Barnett, © 2012 by Larkin Barnett. Excerpt from Chapter 4: Practice the Rocking Motion for the Seven Rocking Massage Exercises

Breathing for the Rocking Massage

Yoga teaches that your breath or “life force” runs through each of your “energy centers” or chakras. The most important element of The Rocking Massage is deep relaxation breathing. This aids in muscle relaxation and the fluid rocking motion. If you hold your breath or breathe shallowly the muscles tighten.  Deep relaxation breathing involves long, slow, even inhalations and exhalations through your nose.

Preparation for the Rocking Massage

  • This time is just for you. Work out away from outside distractions.  You may want to play soft music or light a candle.  You will need a slightly cushioned mat, a blanket, or a towel placed on a carpet.  A yoga sticky mat will not work. Your body cannot slide along it.  It may be necessary to slightly elevate your head. Place a folded towel under your head. Keep the towel flat. The back of your head needs to gently slide during the rocking motion.  


Starting Position for the Rocking Massage Exercises:

To start, lie on your back down on the mat with knees bent, feet flat, and legs hip-width apart, arms resting across your chest.  Place your heels about 12 inches away from your hips.

Discover that the actual motion is a continuous, slow rhythmic action. The body rocks backward and automatically rolls forward in response. The rhythm seamlessly repeats itself without pausing.  Breathe slowly and smoothly as you progress through the movements. 

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Larkin Barnett
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