Sunday, November 6, 2016

What Should a Yoga Instructor Know about Mudras?

yoga instructor education
By Narendra Maheshri

Yoga mudras are hand gestures used during meditation and some asanas. Mudras are used to guide energy flow to specific parts of the body, or to focus on a specific area of the body. They can be therapeutic, calming, and healing. Some yoga instructors teach a few basic mudras to students during meditation, and others do not. Instructors should know what mudras are, and how they benefit the mind and body. They should also know a few basic mudras to use during class, or in case students have questions.

How to Practice Mudras

Mudras can be practiced anywhere, anytime. It is best to find a quiet spot, where you can sit or lie down. Breathe regularly as you let the energy flow to the specified body part or area. Practice mudras for a few minutes or longer, depending on your preference. For best results, mudras should be performed on a regular basis for about 20 minutes per session.

Benefits of Mudras

Yoga mudras can help channel energy throughout the body, which aids in healing a number of different ailments. If used regularly, mudras can help cure anything from heart illness and cancer to the common cold. Many people find relief from stress and anxiety, muscle and joint pain, or lethargy. There are many different yoga mudras, each with a specific purpose. Yoga teachers should always note that mudras are by no means used as a "miracle cure," but they do produce positive results.

Basic Mudras

Guyan mudra is probably one of the most popular mudras, and is often associated with images of a meditating Buddha, his hands on his knees, the thumb and the tip of the forefinger touching while the other three fingers remain straight. Guyan mudra stimulates knowledge and ability by encouraging receptivity and calm. To impart active knowledge, simply bend the tip of the index finger and allow the thumb to press down on it.

Perform Shuni mudra by placing the tip of the middle finger onto the tip of the thumb. Shuni mudra brings patience to those who practice it.

Surya mudra brings intuition, renewed energy, and health to those who desire help in those areas. Bring the tip of the ring finger to rest on the tip of the thumb.

Achieve Buddhi mudra by placing the tip of the smallest finger on the tip of the thumb. This mudra helps bring about clear and intuitive communication with others.

Apan Vayu mudra strengthens the heart, helps normalize blood pressure, and purifies the entire body. Perform Apan Vayu by folding the index finger and resting it at the base of the thumb. Then touch the tips of the middle and ring fingers to the tip of the thumb, leaving the pinky finger straight.

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