Our hands have the most nerve endings, which, when squeezed or positioned in a specific way, form a ‘energy circuit’ that redirects the energy inside the body. The practise of yoga mudras entails a conscious effort to create energy circuits in the body through the delicate physical movement of hands, often known as “gesture,” “seal,” or “mark.”
What is Yoga Mudra?
A mudra is a gesture or energy seal of a certain bodily posture that demonstrates a subtle body condition of consciousness. Mudras in yoga can be hand motions (Hasta Mudra), head gestures (Mana mudra), or entire body gestures (Kaya mudra) as in yoga postures.
Mudras in yoga are similar to other bodily expressions such as laughing, weeping, dancing, or singing. Mudras communicate subtle bodily feelings in the same way as physical expressions express external manifestations of how we feel or what we do. When we do a mudra, the move elicits these feelings and connects us to our true nature.
Although doing a yoga mudra may appear weird at first, we are all instinctively habituated to various motions in our daily lives. These motions instinctively come out when we are depressed, immersed in contemplation, or happy. Many nonverbal communication gestures are already incorporated into yoga mudras.
Types of Yoga Mudras
There are five different forms of yoga mudras. This classification is based on the bodily component we employ to channel energy in a certain mudra (hand, sensory organs eyes like tongue, eyes, or ears, skeletal muscles, or perineal muscles).
- Hasta Mudra (Hand Gestures)- These are gestures made with the fingers and hands.
- Kaya Mudra (Postural Gestures)- The entire body is involved.
- Mana Mudra (Head Gestures)- This involves all the prime sense organs (eyes, nose, tongue, lips and ears).
- Bandha Mudra (Lock Gestures)- Three bandhas, or more specifically, delicate skeletal muscles, are used to perform this mudra (vocal, respiratory & pelvis)
- Adhara Mudra– This involves pelvic organs
Yoga Hand Mudras or Hasta Mudras
In the Yoga Hand Mudras or Hasta Mudras, when any of the five fingers are linked together, the appropriate element of that finger is combined.
- Thumb is the Fire element, and it is in charge of our basic necessities like as hunger, thirst, and sleep.
- Index Finger is the Air element, and it takes care of our movement and breathing.
- Middle Finger is the Ether element, and It’s in charge of inner intelligence, intuition, and deciding what we’re afraid of.
- Ring Finger is the Earth element and it takes care of the bodily composition such as bones, tissues, flesh and skin and hair.
- Little Finger is the Water element which is in charge of the body fluids such as saliva, blood, sweat, urine and semen.
When these 5 factors are out of harmony, it can cause a disruption in the mind and body, leading to illness symptoms Hand mudras are the most commonly utilised mudras, especially during meditation and pranayama sessions. These mudras are recognised for their therapeutic effects and are based on the 5 element philosophy.
30 types of Yoga Hand Mudras And Their Benefits
Steps and Benefits
Index fingertip touches thumb, hand upturned. Rest three fingers extended.
Improves Memory and Concentration, Provides a sense of safety and stability
Middle and ring fingertips touches thumb. Rest two fingers extended.
Cures diabetes and constipation. Reinforces and supports leg joints
Ring and little fingertips touches thumb. Rest two fingers extended
Stops hair fall and boosts lung efficiency.
Press thumb on the second phalanx of the ring finger and ring fingertip touches the base of thumb. Rest three fingers extended
Surya mudra for weight loss, maintain metabolism and reduce Cholesterol.
Press thumb on the second phalanx of the little finger and little fingertip touches the base of thumb. Rest three fingers extended.
Cures dehydration and cleanses blood and gives your clear and glowing skin.
Right hand – Thumb touches middle and ring finger
Left hand – Thumb touches index finger
Relieves back pain and muscles cramps.
Apana Vayu Mudra
Thumb joining middle and ring fingertips while index finger bend to the base of thumb
Right mudra for heart ailments, stops heart attack and smoothens the digestion process.
Thumb pressing second phalanx of middle finger. Rest three fingers extended
Cures ear related problems, numbness and motion sickness
Thumb touching tip of ring and index fingers. Rest two fingers extended.
Takes care of dizziness, brings down the blood pressure and burns belly fat
Thumb fold inside the curled fingers.
Boosts oxygen flow in the blood and gives mental clarity and stability
Both hands fingers clasped and left thumb is erect
Takes care of breathing disorders and prevents hypothermia
Both hands finger align in front of each other, tip upward
Balances left and right hemisphere and improves focus
Thumb touches tip of middle finger. Rest three fingers extended.
Cures migraine, hearing loss, and takes care of calcium deficiency
Little finger and thumb touches side-by-side then spread all fingers in a circular direction.
Initiates creativity, calms an anxious mind and balances the heart chakra
Right hand back, left hand forward – interlock fingers at second phalanx from inside.
Increases lung capacity, reduces neck pain
Interlace both hand fingers and then point both middle fingers up.
Instigate self-confidence, cures insomnia and relaxes the jaw muscles
Make gyan mudra with both hands. Now touch right gyan mudra with left middle fingertip facing outside.
Deepens the meditation process, gives stability and calms an anxious mind
Fold thumb inside curl fingers then press fingers at knuckles.
Controls the thyroid gland secretion, manages irregular menstrual cycle
Middle, ring and little fingertips touches thumb. Index finger extended.
Removes stiffness of muscles, detoxifies the lungs
Ring fingertips of both hand touches opposite little fingertips, and in same manner, middle fingertips touches opposite index fingertips
Enhances creativity and helpful in getting wish fulfillment.
Encircle left thumb with 4 fingers of right hand and then extend left hand 4 fingers and right hand up.
Overcomes dread of speaking, cleanses the nadis, and improves larynx function (voice box).
Join all fingertips to each other, stretch thumb upwards, then bend middle, ring, and little finger so that the back of the fingers are touching.
When done at night before going to sleep, it helps with reproductive issues and relieves any weariness and tension.
Thumb pressing second phalanx of index finger
Overcome gastric problems and builds immunity.
Encircle thumb inside index and middle fingers, touch them at back, raise ring and little fingertips – extend them up.
Sleeplessness is relieved, and painful urination and menstrual discomforts are alleviated.
Curl middle, ring and little finger to palm and touch index fingertip with thumb.
Prevents memory loss and cures insomnia.
Ring finger tip touching thumb. Rest three fingers extended.
Weight gain and healing body tissues.
Index finger curl down to base of thumb, thumb touching outside of middle finger, and rest two fingers extended.
It helps to get rid of allergies and cures common colds, sinus infections, and tonsillitis.
Right hand – touch index and middle finger tip to thumb tip.
Left hand – touch ring and middle finger tip to thumb tip. Rest two fingers extended.
The best mudra for digestion, removing toxins and blockages. Additionally, it relieves nausea, flatulence, and constipation.
Bend and press middle fingers of both hands at the fingernails. Palms should press together gently with the other fingers remaining straight.
Improves breathing, removes blockage and toxins from lung.
Clasp hand together with finger interlaced. Thumb pointing up
Controls the appropriate hormonal flow and regulates irregular menses.
How to do Yoga Hand Mudras?
- Come into a comfortable position – Hand mudras are commonly performed in a meditative sitting position such as Easy pose (Sukhasana), Lotus pose (Padmasana), or Hero pose (Virasana). However, if you don’t feel comfortable sitting on the ground, you can practise some mudras while standing or sitting on a chair.
- Warm up your hands – Gently massage your hands together before placing them on your belly, facing the navel, for a few minutes. The nerves in your hands will be activated.
- Press fingertips together- After warming up your hands, bring your fingers to the appropriate yoga mudra posture and softly press your fingertips together (that much so you can feel the contact between fingers). The backs of the hands are usually put on the knees after achieving a mudra in most contemplative mudras.
- Maintain the Mudra- Hold necessary mudras with your hands in such a way that your fingers do not move. Hold the mudra posture for at least 12 breath counts at start, then gradually increase it over 5 minutes in one sitting.
Is there any scientific evidence behind the Yoga Mudras?
Mudras have been scientifically proved! To far, three studies have been published that demonstrate the therapeutic value of mudras.
To assess the effect of yoga mudra, S-VYASA University India, conducted a study in which they found holding a hand mudra for 20 minutes or more increases the surge of energy at fingertips. It’s measured by the EPI technique.
Benefits of Yoga Mudras
Simply by arranging your hands or body in a specific way, yoga mudras can help you achieve a peaceful state of mind. The following are some of the most significant advantages of yoga mudras:
1. Accelerates Concentration Level
Yoga mudras keep energy from dissipating out of the body, which improves concentration. Increased focus is the outcome.
2. Treats Physical and Mental Ailments
Some hand mudras are even useful in treating ailments including sleeplessness, arthritis, diabetes, and heart issues.
3. Improves Metabolism
Mudras that focus on harmonising the proportions of the five elements in the body help to increase metabolism. Mudras can aid weight reduction and lower harmful cholesterol levels in this way.
4. Boosts Blood Circulation
Holding any yoga mudra for 10 to 15 minutes will help to improve blood circulation and oxygen levels in the body. It reduces the risk of heart disease.
5. Heals physical aches and pains
Mudras can aid with a variety of bodily pains, from the neck to the lower back and legs. Hand mudras can help to enhance joint range of motion while also relieving stress.
6. Enhances Longevity
Yoga mudras are beneficial in raising the body’s prana level. It extends one’s life expectancy.
Yoga mudras are a subtle but essential component of yoga because they allow you to control the energy within your body in various ways. Mudra is associated with the changing mental and spiritual features of an individual. This change through mudra lets channelize the internal energy by affecting sensory glands, veins & organs of the body.