Yoga is globally accepted for treating several diseases and has been proved as a boon to many whose illness was otherwise thought impossible to be cured. But apart from the physical diseases, anxiety, stress, depression, lack of concentration and energy, are some of the biggest problems that the youth are facing today. One great benefit that yoga offers is the uniting of body, mind and breath which helps conquer all the above problems. Few simple hand mudras which can be done at any time of the day have big benefits to offer in terms of increasing memory, helping you to concentrate better, fight migraine, transcend worldly problems and many more, which you will gradually uncover yourself.
What Is A “Mudra”?
Mudras are hand gestures used in practicing Hinduism and Buddhism. They are basically spiritual gestures that act as an energetic seal of authenticity. In yoga, mudras are done in conjunction with pranayama (breathing exercises done in yoga). Mudra stimulates different body parts and evens the flow of energy as every part of the hand connects to a certain part of the body or mind. Here are 5 yoga mudras described along with their health benefits.
1. Gyan Mudra
Gyan means wisdom in Sanskrit. Gyan mudra is believed to increase wisdom/knowledge, memory and concentration. The best time to practice it is in the morning. However, you may do it any time of the day. You may also do it in sitting, standing or lying down positions.
Description: Whether you are doing it in a sitting, standing or lying down position, ensure your back is straight and chest and head are held up high. Touch the tip of your thumb with the tip of your index finger. You can slightly bend the other three fingers or keep them straight. Finally, focus on your breath while keeping your eyes closed.
2. Pran Mudra
Pran means life. Hence, this mudra concentrates on energy and regulates it in the body. It boosts the immune system and is very helpful for the eyes. Practicing this mudra helps reduce hunger pangs (while fasting), insomnia and fatigue.
Description: This mudra can be performed while sitting or standing. Touch the tip of your ring finger and little finger with the tip of your thumb and stretch out the other two fingers. Close your eyes and concentrate on your breath for faster results.
3. Prithvi Mudra
It helps to equalize the element of earth within the body and equalize the Root Chakra for a balanced and fulfilling life. Practicing this mudra will benefit you in many ways including, strengthening the body, relieving fatigue, freeing the mind from irrational beliefs and helps you with spirituality.
Description: Prithvi Mudra can also be performed both while sitting or standing. Touch the tip of each of your ring fingers with the tip of your thumbs and extend the other fingers.
4. Vayu Mudra
This mudra helps balance the air inside one’s body. Vayu mudra is extremely helpful when it comes to joint pains related to rheumatism, sciatica, gout, arthritis and cervical spondylitis. It is also helpful with tremors experienced by those suffering with Parkinson’s disease and pain management as far as polio patients are concerned. People with the above problems are not able to be at their best in most cases because of severe pain. So, practicing this mudra can be really helpful.
Description: Press the tip of your index finger into the mound of your thumb. Fold your thumb and press slightly on the bent index finger and stretch the other three fingers.
5. Agni Mudra
Agni means fire and it is also known as Surya Mudra. This mudra regulates the heat of the body. Hence, it facilitates metabolism, which in turn leads to weight loss. Obesity has become a common problem nowadays because of unhealthy lifestyles and leads to reduced self-confidence. Practicing this mudra is also beneficial for those with weak eyes. Surya mudra has many other benefits which are helpful in tackling constipation, obesity, indigestion, loss of appetite, abnormally low body temperature, common cold and others.
Description: Place the tip of the ring finger on the base of the thumb. Then apply gentle pressure with your thumb on the second phalanx of your ring finger and stretch the rest of the fingers. Do not perform this mudra when you are feeling weak.