Mula refers to the base of the torso and it is related to the muladhara, or root chakra. Energizing this chakra is believed to ground the individual, providing the inner stability necessary for personal growth. The purpose of the mula bandha is to prevent energy from flowing out of the body, directing it instead through the spine and the chakras.
Other benefits of engaging the mula bandha include:
- Energizes the body and increases vitality.
- Builds core strength.
- Protects the muscles of the lower back, making asanas safer.
- Improves mental clarity and concentration.
It is also believed that this practice can regulate menstrual cycles, lower respiration and heart rates, reduce blood pressure and improve digestion.
The other two bandhas are the uddiyana bandha (stomach lock) and the jalandhara bandha (chin lock).