A chartwheel is the basis of an astrology reading. It's a circle divided into 12 divisions called houses. Each house represents different areas of life.

An astrological chart wheel is the tool which underpins all of astrology. Essentially, it is a map – if you were to stand at your place of birth, at your time of birth and be able to see into space, what you would see is the planets in the positions they are marked on in your natal chart wheel. You would also see, rising on the Eastern horizon, the sign marked as your Ascendant sign or Rising sign.

An astrological chart can be made for any time and any place, and they’re not only created for someone’s birth – although this “birth chart” or natal chart is the first chart an astrologer will want to calculate for a client. Charts can also be made for any event, such as a wedding or a business launch, and for answering questions which have occurred in that moment in that place.

Once the chart is calculated and drawn up, interpretation can begin. The astrologer will interpret the positions of the various planets across different signs and different astrological houses, and will also look at the angles and aspects between and among the planets. If analyzing a relationship, the astrologer will look at both charts individually, and then cross reference the two charts together, looking at the way the planetary positions in one interact with the positions in the other.

When looking ahead to future trends, the astrologer will take the birth chart and superimpose current or future planetary positions onto it, looking for links between the planets at the moment of birth and the planets at some point in the future.

The astrological chart wheel is fundamental to astrology, and learning to read one at a glance is an essential skill for any budding astrologer.