The Sanskrit word "cakra" (written chakra in English) means "wheel of light"
Chakras are first mentioned in the Vedas, ancient Hindu texts of knowledge. Early text that provide the location of the chakras include: the Shri Jabala Darshana Upanishad, the Cudamini Upanishad, the Yoga-Shikka Upanishad and the Shandilya Upanishad. Hiroshi Motoyama in
"Theories of the Chakras: Bridge to Higher Consciousness" discusses these text and that of 10th Century mystic Guru Goraknath who wrote in the Gorakshashatakam about awakening these energy centers through meditation.
Chakra Balancing has become widely popular now but it's a practice that has been used for centuries
Chakra balancing today is widely popular among yoga, new age and metaphysical beleifs and their are many forms of chakra balancing and healing such as yoga excerises, meditations, different forms of healing and chakra therapy.