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Main Benefits of Mudras

One of my favorite things to go through in my yoga teacher training are mudras. A mudra is a hand gesture that works with our energies to direct them in a certain way. Mudras are really yoga poses for the hands, when you think about it. A complete yoga practice would include mudras, alongside, meditation, yoga postures, and pranayama.

Where our feet might connect with the Earth’s energy, our fingertips can channel the energy through our chakra system in an intentional way.

There are many types of mudras, but you might not hear your yoga teacher call many of them out during your yoga class. Some of the most popular hand mudras are vayu mudra, vitarka mudra, lotus mudra, apana mudra, gyan mudra, varun mudra, shuni mudra, buddhi mudra, and dhyana mudra.

To give an idea of the power of hand mudras in your yoga practice, I’ll explain how a few of them work.

Apana mudra, for example, is created when you touch the tip of your thumb to the tips of your middle finger and ring finger. The other fingers remain extended. This yoga mudra can be used while seated or during meditation, with the backs of your hands resting on your legs.

This mudra is meant to support downward moving energy, which can help with elimination and detoxification. As a lot of our detoxification of the body involves the intestines, where your solar plexus chakra lives, this mudra can help energy flow through the solar plexus chakra. As the energy moves downward through the body, it cleanses us both energetically and physically.

The dhyana mudra, on the other hand, is “the” meditation mudra. To begin, sit in a comfortable meditation position with your palms facing up. First, rest your left hand in your lap and then place your right hand on top of the left so that your fingers are stacked on top of each other. Connect the tips of your thumbs with comfortable space in between between your thumbs and stacked fingers.

This hand mudra brings a sense of balance and tranquility of the mind, allowing energy to flow freely through both hands as you settle into your meditation practice.

Depending on your own yoga practice and what you need, either in your physical body or spiritual body, you can use a different mudra each time you come to your mat.