5 Essential mudras and when to use them
Yoga Mudra: The word mudra is derived from a Sanskrit word translated as a seal, finger posture, and gesture. The use of mudra in yoga is considered the most powerful tool for increasing self-care and awareness. When hand gestures are used with attention, the ability to flow the energy in the body increases. The yoga we intend to go inward, and when yoga mudras are used during meditation, channels your body energy flows. Our inner self is our actual blissful state, and yoga helps us to reach that internal state. The way we place our thumb and finger guides us where we want to direct our energy in the body.
Here are the five essential Yoga mudra and when to use them:
Applying gentle pressure to these areas of the hand with the finger activates the brain’s particular region. Our fingers represent the body’s five elements: air, water, earth, fire, and space. As we balance these fundamental energies in our bodies, it helps in a continuous flow of power and lets us connect more with our subtle energy body, our true self. This internal energy which is balanced, affected our sensory organs, veins, tendons, and glands. You can learn more about the various Yoga Mudras in our Yoga Teacher Training in Goa courses. You will learn how to practice these mudras in conjunction with your breath.
Ideally, one should practice these yoga mudras by sitting in Sukhasana or Vajrasasna or merely sitting on a chair, keeping their back straight. Generally, ujjayi breath is used while practicing yoga mudra, and at least take 10 to 12 deep breaths while practicing these Yoga mudras to notice the change in energies in the body.
To perform Anjali mudra, press both the palm together near your heart center. Sometimes the hands are placed near the third eye center too, and this is initially a very salutation which represents that I bow to divinity within you from the god inside me. When used in conjunction of breath, connects the right and left hemisphere of the brain and represents our active and receptive nature.
When to use: Anjali mudra(gesture of namaste) is used at the end of every yoga class as a gesture of centering oneself and bow to the divinity.
To practice Ganesha mudra, bring your left hand in front of your chest with the palm facing out and grab the left finger with the right one to form a clasp or lock with the back of the right hand facing out.
Lord Ganesha is a Hindu god known as the remover of any obstacle with our strength and confidence. This yoga mudra is known to uplift your spirit and relieves your tension and stress.
When to use: Ganesh mudra is often used while practicing binding yoga poses such as Marichyasana, where both power and strength are needed.
To perform yoni mudra, press the index finger and thumb together and fold the rest of the fingers inwards with the back of both fingers touch each other. The index finger points downward, and both the thumb joins the top to form a closed ring. The word yoni referred to the womb, and the yoni mudra represents shakti. It is believed that practicing this yoga mudra help in improving the fertility of women. When practice in conjuncture with breathing helps achieve the tranquility an unborn child feels in the womb.
When to practice: Yoni mudra is performed when you practice Supta Baddha Konasana to invoke the feminine energy within you.
To practice chin mudra, touch the tip of the index finger and thumb, keeping the other finger straight. Your hands should be placed on the thigh with your palm facing up. Chin mudra is known as a symbol of consciousness, increase concentration, and energy in the body. Practicing chin mudra help in reducing lower back pain. The chin mudra practice connects the nerve pathway and power associated with chin Bindu which governs the abdominal breathing.
When to use: Chin mudra is generally used in seated meditation or while practicing ujjayi breath.
Bhairava mudra is one of the easiest yoga mudras where you have to place your right hand on the top of your left hand, keeping your palm facing up. Bhairava mudra is considered as the ferocious manifestation of lord shiva, the destroyer. The practice of bhairava mudra represents the union of feminine and masculine energy channels (Ida and Pingala).
When to use: This yoga mudra is generally used in spiritual yoga practice.