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Posts Tagged ‘yoga mudras’

A Mudra For Restoring Energy

Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

Yong Yang demonstrates A Mudra For Restoring Energy. Guide: Dr. Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500 (Director of Yoga Teacher Training at Aura Wellness Center).

A Mudra for Vocal Empowerment

Tuesday, December 6th, 2011

Yong Yang of Aura Wellness Center demonstrates a mudra for self-confidence and vocal empowerment. Dr. Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500 (Director of Yoga Teacher Training) gives you step-by-step guidance throughout this practice.

History of Yoga Mudras

Thursday, November 17th, 2011

become a yoga teacherBy Amruta Kulkarni, CYT 250

The term “mudra” is a Sanskrit word meaning “gesture.” Yoga mudras are used to aide in healing by focusing energy to different parts of the body. Generally, they are practiced during meditation and incorporated with deep breathing, or pranayama. There are many different types of mudras, each aimed at channeling energy to a specific area of the body. Therefore, Yoga mudras alone can adjust the flow of prana throughout one’s body. Combining mudra, meditation, and pranayama is a powerful method, which yields maximum results.

The history of yoga mudras dates back to pre-historic times before ancient Egyptian and Eastern civilizations were established. When the early civilizations grew, images of various gods and goddesses commonly show them sitting or standing with their hands in one of many mudras. In India, mudras were used in ritual dances to regulate stress and intonation. As religion developed worldwide and branched out into different forms, many of the new ideologies still incorporated mudras into rituals and meditative practices. Although many mudras are performed with hands, Kechari Mudra is actually done with the tongue.

Traditionally, mudras have been used in more than just yoga or meditation practices. They are also used in classical Indian dances, religious icons, Tantric practices, devotional rituals, and visualization or meditation practices. Bharatnatyam is a form of classical Indian dance using mudras, where they are used to tell religious tales through the dancers’ body movements and hand placements.

One of the most well known mudras is the Abhaya, which is a palm facing out, fingers pointed up. It is often associated with images of the Buddha. Abhaya represents protection, peace, and benevolence. Bumisparsha Mudra is an important part of Buddhist history. Depicted by the left hand facing palm up, resting in the lap and the right hand touching the ground with the fingertips near the right knee. Bumisparsha symbolizes Buddha taking the earth as witness after the cessation of suffering.

Dharmachakra Mudra also represents an important point in Buddha’s life, marking his first sermon after achieving enlightenment. Joining the thumbs and index fingers together and allowing the other fingers to relax, with the left palm facing the body and the right palm facing away perform Dharmachakra. Dharmachakra also represents the turning wheel of the Dharma. Another historical mudra, the Karana rids the mind negative thoughts, expels demons, and removes sickness. Lifting the index finger and the pinky finger while leaving the other fingers and the thumb curled performs it.

© Copyright 2011 – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division

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How to Practice Yoga Mudras

Wednesday, November 16th, 2011

yoga teacher trainingBy Amruta Kulkarni, CYT 250

Yoga mudras, or hand gestures, are an important part of a well-rounded yoga practice. Mudras are specific hand placements that allow energy to be directed to specific parts of the body. Yoga mudras are often used as an aide in healing common ailments, maladies, or diseases. In order to incorporate mudras into meditation, it is important to understand the specific benefits of each mudra, as well as any precautions each individual needs to take. Practice mudras on a regular basis for the best results.

Mudras can easily be incorporated into a regular yoga routine by adding them to the postures you currently perform. First, you must choose the mudra(s) that you wish to practice. Each specific Yoga mudra focuses on a different area of the body or element of life. Ask yourself if you want to improve concentration, sharpen your memory, relieve cough and cold symptoms, or cure a specific malady within the body. Then incorporate the mudra into existing seated or standing poses, or take a minute before, during, and after each series of flowing poses to sit or stand with the mudra.

To get the full benefit of a mudra, it is best to practice it during a meditation session. Choose a comfortable position, either sitting or lying down. Possible choices in Lotus, Half-Lotus, Corpse, or Easy pose, with legs crossed. Take a few deep breaths to focus the mind. Bring your hands together into the chosen mudra and continue to breathe deeply, making sure to bring the breath in through the nose, fill up the abdominal and chest cavities, and slowly let the breath out through the mouth. Certain mudras should be practiced for certain time periods, so make sure you are aware of the recommended amount of time to hold the mudra of your choice. You can choose to practice one Yoga mudra, or a variety of mudras based on your current state of body and mind.

Although it might seem less meditative, mudras can actually be practiced anywhere, anytime. If your schedule is busy, but you find yourself with small chunks of time throughout the day to practice a Yoga mudra, feel free. Perhaps while driving to and from your destinations, while waiting in line at the supermarket, while waiting for a doctor’s appointment, or even at your work desk to energize your mind.

© Copyright 2011 – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division

To see our selection of Online Yoga teacher training courses, please visit the following link.

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What are Yoga Mudras?

Monday, November 14th, 2011

yoga teacher trainingBy Amruta Kulkarni, CYT 250

Perhaps you have attended or instructed a yoga class where you placed your palms together at the chest, fingers pointing up, or you pressed the thumb and forefinger together while resting your hands on your knees and breathing deeply. Both of these common images of a yogi are symbolic gestures called mudras. The first, often called prayer position, is sometimes known as the Anjali or Namaste Mudra. It is used often in the sun salutation, tree pose, or mountain pose. The Guyan Mudra, which connects the thumb to forefinger, stimulates knowledge and imparts calm.

Mudras, meaning gestures, are an ancient tradition, which can be tracked back to early civilizations such as: India, Egypt, and many parts of Asia. Theoretically, primal man may have used mudras before formal language was constructed, because they are typically performed with the hands and fingers. Each mudra has a specific target in the body to which it reaches in order to guide the energy flow to specific areas of the body. Practicing mudras can aide in healing, improve concentration, and bring balance to the mind and body.

Some other common Yoga mudras include the Active Guyan Mudra, where the first joint of the index finger bends beneath the first joint of the thumb, forming a small circle. The Active Guyan Mudra imparts active knowledge. Shuni Mudra gives patience by touching the tip of the middle finger to the tip of the thumb. Surya or Ravi Mudra brings the tip of the ring finger to the tip of the thumb, imparting energy, health, and intuition. For clear and intuitive communication, touch the tip of the pinky finger to the tip of the thumb, called the Buddhi Mudra. To perform the Venus Lock, men interlace the fingers with the left pinky finger on the bottom and the right index finger on the top.

Women should do the same, except place the left index finger on top. Then, press the base of the thumbs together to channel sensuality and glandular balance. Focus on breaking through barriers and achieving good luck with Jupiter Mudra by lacing the fingers together, except the index fingers, which press extend out and press together. The Bear Grip will stimulate the heart and increase concentration. To do it, point the left thumb down with the palm facing away from the body, point the right thumb up with palm facing the body and clasp the fingers of both hands.

© Copyright 2011 – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division

To see our selection of Online Yoga teacher training courses, please visit the following link.

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FREE CONTENT: If you are a Yoga Teacher, Yoga studio, blogger, e-zine, or website publisher, and are in need of quality content, please feel free to use my blog entries (articles). Please be sure to reprint each article, as is, including the resource box above. Namaste!

Four Yoga Mudras for Healing

Sunday, November 13th, 2011

yoga teacher trainingBy Amruta Kulkarni, CYT 250

Mudra is a Sanskrit word meaning “hand gestures.” Mudras have historically been a part of Yogic practices, and are also found in Buddhism and Indian rituals. They are an important part of meditation and yoga. Simply put, mudras involve pressing specific fingers together or placing the hands in specific postures to channel energy through the body and provide balance. Although they are simple to perform, they can provide powerful results for common ailments including insomnia, arthritis, anxiety, and more. When using Yoga mudras to heal, it is important to become knowledgeable about the mudras to determine which will target the problem area or disease. Add mudras to your current yoga or meditation practice, repeating them often for the full benefits.

Linga Mudra

The Linga Mudra produces heat in the body, which can help cure hypothermia or a chilled body, common cold and cough ailments where the body has produced too much mucous, asthma and other respiratory ailments, and sexual debility in males. Perform the Linga Mudra only when symptoms are active in the body, not as a preventative measure and discontinue once symptoms are relieved. Overuse of this mudra can cause lethargy and sluggishness. Do not use the Linga Mudra when fever is present.

To perform the Linga Mudra, interlock the fingers and palms keeping the left thumb pointing up.

Prana Mudra

The Prana Mudra is recommended for the overall health of the body’s immune system. It activates the body’s defense mechanisms, enabling them to fight disease. Regular practice can fight against thyroid problems and many types of cancer.

Bring the tips of the pinky and ring fingers to rest on the tip of thumb on one or both hands. Hands can be placed horizontally or vertically.

Vayu Mudra

Practice the Vayu Mudra to help with symptoms of arthritis, trembling, rheumatism, gout, joint pain, and sciatica.

Hold the index finger down with the thumb pressing on top of it, keeping the three other fingers straight.

Guyan Mudra (also known as Gyan or Om Mudra)

This is probably the most widely known and often practiced of all the Yoga mudras.

Relieve stress and depression, sharpen the memory and concentration, relieve insomnia, and achieve mental peace with the Guyan Mudra.

Press the tip of the thumb and index finger together, with very little pressure, while leaving the other three fingers in an upright position.

During meditation or relaxation sessions, Paulji often tells us to connect the index finger and thumb so lightly that we are not thinking about the sense of touch at this precise point. The result is a ring of energy that naturally flows without forcing it to happen.

© Copyright 2011 – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division

To see our selection of Online Yoga teacher training courses, please visit the following link.

FREE Yoga Report. FREE Yoga Newsletter. FREE Yoga Videos. Free Podcasts. Bonus: Free Yoga e-Book, “Yoga in Practice.”

FREE CONTENT: If you are a Yoga Teacher, Yoga studio, blogger, e-zine, or website publisher, and are in need of quality content, please feel free to use my blog entries (articles). Please be sure to reprint each article, as is, including the resource box above. Namaste!


Friday, November 20th, 2009

Dr. Rita KhannaDr. Rita Khanna


The special gesture of the fingers and hands, in relation to the body, is called a Mudra. These Mudras generate, redirect, and recharge the hidden energies of Panch Mahapranas; i.e., the immediate force which governs the physical body. The attitudes and postures, adopted during Mudra practices, establish a direct link between Annamaya Kosha (the physical body), Pranamaya Kosha (the pranic body), and Manomaya Kosha (the mental body).

After establishing the Pranic balance within the Koshas, the practitioner gradually enables the redirection of subtle energy to the upper chakras, inducing higher states of consciousness. There are 25 mudras in Hatha Yoga, which can be categorized into five groups. They are Mana (Head Mudras), Kaya (Postures Mudras), Bandha (lock Mudras), Adhara (Perineal Mudras), and Hasta (Hand Mudras).

To make it simple, these can be categorized into two groups:

1. Mudras involving the whole body in a combination of Asana, Pranayama, Bandha, and visualization techniques. These types of Mudras lead to awaking of Pranas, Chakras, and Kundalini.

2. Simple hand Mudras for balancing the five elements.


1. Mana / Head Mudras

Mana Mudras involve the engagement of subtle skeletal muscles, mostly in the areas of the pelvis, and centralize the Prana in the body. These are useful in stimulating the Kundalini powers. They are called Shambhavi, Nasikagra Drishti, Khechari, Kaki, Bhujangini, Bhoochari, Akashi, Shanmukhi, and Unmani Mudras. Mana Mudras need concentration and focus on internal consciousness whilst elevating the cognizance. The positions of the eyes, ears, nose, tongue, and lips play a key role in these Mudras.

2. Kaya / Postures Mudras

These practices utilize physical postures, combined with breathing and concentration. They are called Prana, Vipreetakarni, Yoga, Pashinee, Manduki, and Tadagi Mudras. Kaya Mudras reinvigorates the Prana in the body and directs the Prana into specific Chakras, which are energy channels.

3. Bandha / Lock Mudras

These practices combine Mudra and Bandha, which give rise to special kinds of nerve impulses, which are sent to the brain centers and translated as new sensation; e.g. vibration, throbbing, creeping sensation, feeling of ecstasy, bliss, extreme joy, etc. They are called Maha Mudra, Maha Bheda Mudra, and Maha Vedha Mudra.

4. Adhara /Perineal Mudras

These techniques redirect Prana, from the lower centers, to the brain. These Mudras control the sexual capacity. They are called Ashwini Mudra, and Vajroli/Sahajoli Mudra.

5. Hasta / Hand Mudras

Hand Mudras are all meditative Mudras. They redirect the Prana, being emitted by the hands, back into the body. They are called Jnana /Gyan, Chin, Yoni, Bhairava, and Hridaya Mudras.


The above Mudras should be learned under the instructions of Yoga Mudra experts in order to get wonderful results.



The physical body is composed of five elements, which are fused with each other in different proportions, to form each human body. These five elements are fire, air, space (ether), earth, and water. The thumb represents fire, the index finger represents air, the middle finger represents space, the ring finger represents earth, and the little finger represents water. When these five elements are present in fixed proportion, the body remains healthy; but if there is the slightest imbalance in these elements, it can upset our immune system and cause various ailments. The ancient Yogis explained how, with bringing together the fingers in various permutations and combinations, the elements could be manipulated in the physical body. This balancing of the tension and redirection of the internal energy affects the changes in veins, tendons, glands, and sensory organs to bring the body back to a healthy state.


• Mudra science is an independent Yoga that brings quick and effective changes.

• Mudras are easy to practice and can be practiced by sitting, standing, or lying on a bed – whenever and wherever you have time; but these are most effective when we perform in Vajrasana, Padmasana, or Sukhasana, and on an empty stomach.

• While performing Mudras, try to keep the rest of the fingers straight. It is always a better option to do these Mudras with both hands, palms facing the sky – although it is not a rule.

• The left hand Mudras are beneficial for the right side of the body and vice versa.

• Mudras can be practiced for a minimum of 30 seconds and up to 45 minutes daily. The practice can be spread out over three times a day for convenience or depending on your capacity.

• Mudras can be practiced both by the healthy and the non-healthy. In the former case, they are preventive measures, which preserve your health.

• Continuous practice of the Mudra will create minute changes in your body. There is perhaps nothing better in the world than the practice of Mudras for success and well-being.

• So try it, it really helps.

Following are a few very powerful Mudras for the wonderful health benefits…


 1. Mudra of Knowledge (Gyan Mudra)

Sit in any comfortable meditation posture. Touch the tip of the thumb, to the tip of the index finger, with the other three fingers stretched out. Place the hands on the knees. Keep the spine straight and the eyes closed. As it is a Mudra of knowledge, it enhances the knowledge. The tip of the thumb has centers of pituitary and endocrine glands. When we press these centers, by the index finger, the two glands work actively.


Increases memory power and sharpens the brain, enhances concentration, and prevents insomnia. If we practice it regularly, it will cure all psychological disorders, such as mental, hysteria, anger, and depression. For insomnia problems, after this Mudra, perform Pran Mudra.

2. Mudra of Life (Prana Mudra)

Bend the ring finger and the little finger, and touch the tip of the thumb, with their tips keeping the remaining two fingers stretched. As it is the Mudra of life, it improves the vitality of the body, as Prana Mudra activates the Root Chakra. In Root Chakra, the elemental force of human entity resides. The fingers positioned in the Mudra, provokes the nourishing energy in the pelvic floor. If we practice it regularly, we will become active and strong.


It improves immunity, improves the vitality of the body, improves eyesight, helps in the proper functioning of the lungs, energizes the heart, and removes vitamin deficiency and fatigue.

3. Mudra of Earth ( Prithvi Mudra)

Touch the tip of the thumb and the tip of the ring finger together, keeping the other three fingers straight. Since this Mudra is an association of the earth element with the powerful Sun, it brings solidity to the body.


Regular practice of this Mudra assists in weight gain, if the body is underweight, helps restore the balance and equilibrium of the body, wards off weakness, fatigue, dullness, and increases Prana in the body. The position of the fingers intensifies the sense of smell and is also effective for nail, skin, hair, and bones. It brightens the aura, activates the thinking power, and helps to broaden the orthodox / conservative thinking pattern; it compensates for lack of Rajasic Guna (passion).

4. Mudra of Water (Varun Mudra)

Join the little fingertip with the tip of the thumb, keeping the rest of the fingers stretched out. As the name suggests, this Mudra is associated with the water element (Varun is a name for the water God), so it balances the water element in the body. It retains clarity in the blood and prevents all diseases which come, due to lack of water.


Do not press the tip of the little finger near the nail, as it causes dehydration, rather than hydrating the system. Those having respiratory problems, should not do this Mudra.


Excellent for skin disorders, such as wrinkles, skin infections, and dryness, it purifies the blood and heals many blood disorders; brings luster and glow to the body; especially, the face; compensates for the shortage of water in the body, and cures constipation. Since it moisturizes the body, it is also a thirst-quenching Mudra, which activates the salivary glands to secrete saliva, relieves dehydration, and stomach infection, relieves kidney malfunctioning and promotes urination, activates the circulation of fluids in the body, prevents the pains of gastroenteritis, and muscle shrinkage.

5. Mudra of Air (Vayu Mudra)

Keep the index finger on the base of the thumb, and press the back of the second phalange with the thumb, by keeping the other three fingers straight. It prevents all the diseases that occur, due to the imbalance of the air. The practice of this Mudra, for 45 minutes, reduces the severity of the disease in 12 to 24 hours. For better results, practice it for two months.


This Mudra helps with rheumatic pains, arthritis, gout, paralysis, Parkinson’s disease, chest pain, back pain, neck pain, any pain associated with excess wind in the body. It releases aches and pains and acts as first aid.

6. Mudra of Emptiness (Shunya Mudra)

Bend the middle finger and place it at the ball of the thumb – then press it with the thumb. The rest of the fingers are left extended. For optimum results, this Mudra is performed for 45 minutes at a stretch. It reduces the dullness in our body. Shunya Mudra is a connotation of Sky, which is colligated with the highest forces.


Do not do this Mudra while having food or walking.


It relieves an earache within 4 or 5 minutes, useful for the deaf and mentally challenged, reduces the dullness in our body, beneficial for heart patients, strengthens the gums, improves the voice of those who are dumb since birth, and is good with thyroid problems. It brings relaxation to sudden senselessness of body, due to sudden shock.

7. Mudra of Sun (Surya / Agni Mudra)

Bend the ring finger and press it with the thumb. It sharpens the center in the thyroid gland. Practice it daily, twice, for 5 to 15 minutes.


Weak persons should not apply this Mudra, since it produces heat in the body; one should not do this in very hot weather.


It balances the body, reduces cholesterol in the body, helps in reducing weight, reduces anxiety, and corrects indigestion problems. Good for diabetes and liver problems.

8. Mudra of Digestion (Apan Mudra)

The tips of middle finger and ring finger touch the tip of the thumb, while the other two fingers are stretched out. Apan Mudra is called energy Mudra. This Mudra stimulates the wood element, which is associated with the energy of the liver and gallbladder. It gives patience, serenity, confidence, inner balance, and harmony. It plays an important role in our health, as it regulates the excretory system.


Purifies the whole body, removes toxemia from the body, cures vomiting, and regularizes the urine flow and perspiration. It regulates diabetes, cures constipation, and piles. For healthy teeth, use this Mudra, along with Akash Mudra. For eyes, ears, and mouth related problems -use this Mudra with Pran Mudra. Cures menstruation related problems, burning sensation of the hand, heart, leg, and urine.

9. Mudra of Osteoporosis (Aakash Mudra)

Join the tip of the middle finger with the tip of the thumb, keeping the rest of the three fingers straight. This Mudra is a combination of the ether element, with the sun, and pertains to any ailment involving sound.


This Mudra is excellent for increasing the sensitivity to hear sounds, activates the calcium and phosphorus absorption from the diet, and also their formation, which makes it a very good Mudra for those having weakness of bones, such as osteoporosis. Due to its inherent quality to release tension, it keeps the mind calm and serene and can be used during meditation, successful in releasing lockjaw experienced through yawning, mental tension, or over-exertion. Regular practice calms and clarifies the thought process.

10. Mudra of Heat (Ling Mudra)

Interlock the fingers of both hands and keep the thumb of the left hand vertically straight; encircle it with the thumb and the index finger of the right hand. Linga Mudra is the booster of the body’s immune system and helps to relieve other problems related to human anatomy.


Practice it any time you want; but don’t practice it a lot, as it produces heat in the body. It can cause sweating, even in winter, if you practice it longer. In addition to practice of this Mudra, follow a balanced and healthy diet. Drink lots of water, juices, and eat more fruit.


It stops the production of phlegm and gives power to the lungs, cures severe cold and bronchial infection, invigorates the body, and is good in low BP. If Ling Mudra is practiced daily, along with proper performance of Kapalbhati Pranayam, then various complicated diseases of the chest can be healed. Regular practicing of this Mudra is effective for those who are overweight.

11. Mudra of Heart (Apan Vayu Mudra)

The tips of the middle finger and the ring finger touch the tip of the thumb, while the index finger touches the base of thumb and the little finger is stretched out. Apan Vayu Mudra is a combination of two Mudras – Apan Mudra and Vayu Mudra. This Mudra benefits the heart. It works like an injection for the reduction of a heart attack. It is as powerful as a sorbitate tablet. Within the first two seconds, this Mudra proves to be an instant reliever. This Mudra is also called, Hridaymudra or Mrit Sanjeevani Mudra. Practice it as many times as you can. Heart patients and BP patients can practice it for 15 minutes daily, twice, for better results.


It strengthens the heart and regularizes palpitation, regulates the excretory system, cures gastric trouble, is helpful to cure acidity and headache – also regulates bowel movements; it is effective on a toothache, balances body temperature, and disposes toxic things from the body.


• While taking a walk, apply Apan Vayu Mudra. This will not only help your heart, it will prepare you for the day by charging up your circulation and your metabolism.

• Do Yoga and Dhyan for at least 30 minutes, three or more times per week. It helps strengthen the heart.

• Nadi Sodhana Paranayam is the best exercise for heart patients and can be done virtually anywhere, anyplace. For this, inhale through the left nostril, exhale through the right, then again inhale through the right, and exhale through the left.

• Increase fiber and reduce fat intake in your diet, as this helps lower blood cholesterol. Fiber is found only in plants – fruits, vegetables, and grains.

• In case you are a heart patient and want to climb stairs, then 5-7 minutes before that, do Apan Vayu Mudra. It’ll give you relaxation.

• Learn to stay calm, so that you don’t lose your temper and increase your blood pressure. Deep breathing is a good way to control anger and to relax.

• Make yourself happy and feel free, keep smiling always. Even five minutes of laughter keeps our stress at the lowest possible level.

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Dr. Rita Khanna

Dr. Rita Khanna is a well-known name in the field of Yoga and Naturopathy. She was initiated into this discipline over 25 years ago by world famous Swami Adyatmananda of Sivananda Ashram in Rishikesh(India).

She believes firmly that Yoga is a scientific process, which helps us to lead a healthy and disease-free life. She is also actively involved in practicing alternative medicines like Naturopathy. Over the years, she has been successfully practicing these therapies and providing succour to several chronic and terminally ill patients through Yoga, Diet and Naturopathy. She is also imparting Yoga Teachers Training.

At present, Dr. Rita Khanna is running a Yoga Studio in Secunderabad (Hyderabad, India).