Last week, in my post on India, I spoke of a wonderful man, Deepak, whom I met while traveling and exploring the spa industry in Mumbai. Deepak credited daily meditation for his longevity, and shared with me the following yoga mudras. I am currently practicing them, and hope you will join me!
Regular practice of the yoga mudras are said to contribute to ultimate health and vitality. Continuous practice will create minute changes in the corresponding body parts. Mudras are performed with both hands at the same time. They can be incorporated into a breathing routine as we recommend here or they can be used on their own throughout the day. To begin the meditation, sit in Butterfly (soles of feet together), Lotus or a simple crossed-leg position. Breathe by expanding your lower belly. Hold each mudra for five minutes concentrating on the breathe:
1. Gyan Mudra: (Combining Fire with Air)
How To Do It: touch the tip of your index finger and thumb, keeping your other three fingers straight and stretched.
What It Does: good for mental peace concentration, stress, depression, migraine, loss of memory and insomnia.
2. Vaya Mudra: (Taking Air)
How To Do It: Bend index finger downward so it’s touching the base of the thumb and cross thumb on top. Keep your other fingers straight.
What It Does: helps with acidity, gas, good for bones, arthritis and the back.
3. Shunya Mudra: (Touching Sky)
How To Do It: Bend middle finger downward so it’s touching the base of the thumb and cross thumb on top. Keep your other fingers straight.
What It Does: good for vertigo and the ears.
4. Surya Mudra: (Touching Earth)
How to Do It: Bend ring finger downward so it’s touching the base of the thumb and cross thumb on it. Keep your other fingers straight.
What It Does: good for stomach, diabetes, cholesterol, corns, lungs, sinus, cold, cough, thyroid and weight reduction.
5. Apang Mudra (Touching Sky and Earth)
How To Do It: Touch middle, ring finger and thumb. Keep index and pinky fingers straight.
What It Does: good for the heart, eliminating toxins and constipation, eliminating toxins.
All mudras except Surya should be done 1-1/2 hours after eating.
6. Stretch your hands up. Inhale – make a fist with both hands. Lean to one side and then the other.
7. Stretch your hands back. Make a fist with both hands. Inhale. Raise your arms. Push your chest forward and shoulders back. Stretch.
8. Straight hands in front – inhale and make a fist. Exhale, turn your hands with fist up and raise your arms above your head. Stretch.
9. Alternate nostril breathing 10 times. Place your right ring finger on your left nostril. Inhale through the right. Plug the right nostril with your thumb and exhale through the left nostril. Inhale through the left nostril, plug your left nostril with you ring finger and repeat 10 times.
10. Relax and rotate shoulders both ways.
See below link for a visual diagram of the Mudra finger positions: