3 min read
28 Dec

Mudras in Yoga

                                                                                                                                                                                - Nabin Kumar Shahi

Mudra is a Sanskrit word which is translated as ‘gesture’ or ‘attitude’. In the practice of yoga, the mudras have important place. The root word ‘mud’ which means ‘pleasure’. The gestures or attitude that brings pleasure in physical, psychological, emotional, devotional and aesthetic aspect is called ‘mudra’.

It purifies the nadis. It balances the both aspects of body- right and left hemisphere, prana and apana. It aims to develop balance and harmony in our body. It works on balancing the Ida and Pingala nadis. It helps to absorb the elixir that is secreted from bindu a point situated at the posterior fontanel which is collected at Visuddhi Chakra.

Gheranda Samhita describes Mudras as 25 kinds. Shiva Samhita explains 10 mudras and Hatha Yoga Pradipika also writes 10 mudras.

Types of Mudra





It’s connected to mental aspect. It’s related to mind.

Vaagbhvaa: It’s related to mantra.


It’s related to physical. Physical postures are connected to the body.

Mainly the mudras are divided into two categories: Hasta Mudra and Yogic Mudra. Here we will discuss about the Mudra which are mentioned in Yogic texts such as Hatha Yoga Pradipika, Gheranda Samhita, Shiv Smahita etc. God Shiv mentions that there are about 350000 nadis in the body whereas Hatha Yoga Pradipika, Gheranda Samhita assert the number nadis as 72000.

Benefits and Objectives of Mudras

According to Hatha Yoga Pradipika, the mudra helps to awaken the Kundalini. Asta Siddhi is attained. The bondage of life and death is dissipated.

Gheranda Samhita mentions that mudras are secret. They destroy the disease They help to dissipate the bondage of life and death.

  • Mahamudra

In the practice of Maha-mudra, deep breath is inhaled.  Then one needs to apply Jalandhara Bandha. According to Hatha Yoga Pradipika, it is practiced keeping the right heel underneath the perineum while another leg is extended.  Both hands are placed on the toes of the extended leg.

The benefits of the mudras are as follows:

It is helpful practice for Kundalini awakening,

It reduces Gastritis.

It helps to heal skin issues.

It works on decreasing constipation.

It balances respiratory issues.  

  • Maha- Bandha

When we put chin to upper part of the chest, it becomes Jalandhara Bandha. Sucking the navel in when the breath is externally retained, it becomes Uddiyana Bandha. Pulling the perineum upward, it becomes Mulabandha.  Applying all these Bandhas together it becomes Maha Bandha.

  • Maha-veda

Mahaveda is required to get the benefits from both Maha-Bandha and Mahamudra. The process of performing Maha-Veda includes keeping the legs straight while placing palms on the side of the hips. Every time buttocks must be lifted and dropped. By this practice, the energy accumulated or stored at the root center rises upward.  

It increases the Jatharagni. It enables Ashta Siddhi. It decreases the gray hair.

  • Khechari Mudra

 The best mudra among the mudras according to Swami Swatmaram. The tongue is rolled upward to touch the upper palate. While rolling the tongue upward, the ujjayi pranayama can be applied.  Gradually, the breath slows down up to 5 times minute. In order to increase the length of the tongue, Katan, chalan, dohan can be applied in the length of a hair every week.

Himalaya Rock salt can be applied to prevent any infection.

  • Uddiyan Bandha
  • The breath must be exhaled in order to apply the Uddiyan Bandha. Then, we need to pull the belly in and hold the Bandha up to our capacity.

  • Mula Bandha

Either inhaling or exhaling, one must pull the perineum upward to maintain the Mula Bandha. Reproductive issue can be healed by Mula Bandha.

  •  Jalandhara Bandha

Jalandhara Bandha is applied both after exhaling or inhaling, one must lower the chin down to the upper part of the chest to maintain the lock. By the practice of Jalandhara Bandha `Thyroid and parathyroid issue can be treated.

  • Viparita Karani Mudra
  • Similar to Sarvangasana. However, there are differences between Viparita Karani Mudra and Sarvagasana. We Keep the buttock arched so that the head and the toes in the same life whereas the buttocks and back remain in arches position. In the case of Sarvangasana, the back should be straight; the shoulder, back and the legs should be in one line. Viparita Karani Mudra helps to heal the throat issue.

  •  Vajroli Mudra (Sahjoli Mudra/ Amroli Mudra)
  • The practice of Vajroli Mudra requires to take the air through the passage of penis or vagina. It is intense and difficult practice compared to many other mudras. In Sahjoli Mudra, the dung of cow is burn and it’s rubbed in the genitals parts whereas in Amroli Mudra the concentration is maintained in genitals as well as third eye.
  •  Shaktichalani Mudra

The dormant energy located at the Muladhara center is activated by the practice of Shaktichalani Mudra.  The inhalation (Purak) is continued for 3 hours through right nostril  while sitting in Vajrasana. The toes are pressed by the hands. The breath is retained as well as bhastrika pranayama can be performed in the practice of Shaktichalani Mudra.

  • Nabho Mudra
  • Opening the mouth while taking the tongue out, one starts to breath from the throat which becomes Nabho Mudra.
  • Yoni Mudra
  • Making the mouth like a crow (Kaki Mudra), the breath is performed as bhastrika. The fingers are placed in the eyes as in Shanmukhi Mudra.
  • Tadagi Mudra
  • Inhale and hold the breath while making the belly round. In Uddiyan Mudra, the belly is sucked in where as in Tadagi Mudra the belly comes out.  
  • Manduki Mudra
  • We can sit like in Vajrasana and we roll the tongue around the upper palate. We start to feel the elixir that drops from the bindu. This practice decreases the gray hair.
  • Shambhavi Mudra
  • Gazing at the third eye, one seats in steady and static position.
  • Prithvi Dharana- concentrate on the elements of Prithvi. For 5 ghadi (2 hours), one concentrates on Prithvi. The ability of conquer the death can be attained by the practice of Prithvi Dharana.
  • Ambashi Dharana- For 5 ghadi, one concentrates on Ambashi-water.
  • Agni Dharana- For 5 ghadi, one concentrates on fire.
  •  Vayu Dharana- For 5 ghadi, one concentrates on air.
  • Aakash Dharana- One’s concentration is maintained on Aakash.
  • Aswhini Mudra
  • Applying and releasing the Mula-Bandha in every few seconds
  • Paswhini Mudra
  • Similar to Karnapidasana, the extra is we need to wrap the arms around the legs.
  • Kaki Mudra
  • Opening mouth inhale and exhale from nostril.
  • Matangini Mudra
  • Vyut karma-take water from nostril and out from mouth
  • Shit Karma- take water from mouth and out from nostril
  • Water should be up to the level of chin. Brings power as elephant.
  • Bhujungani Mudra
  • Open your mouth, inhale and let the breath enter the belly. It relieves abdominal issues, throat issues etc.

  • Source: Consortium for Education Communication & Asana Pranayama Mudra Bandha

* The email will not be published on the website.