Mudras for Strength and Resilience
Mudras are gestures made using the hands and fingers to facilitate the flow of energy during our yoga practises. In fact,you do them all the time in class without realising! Every time you bring your hands together at the heart you are practising Anjali mudra or, prayer seal. Umongst the vast number of different mudras there are a number that are dedicated to creating a feeling of strength and resilience, not just in your yoga practise but also energetically within daily life. Here are our favourite mudras for creating a feeling of strength and personal power!
How – Lace the fingers together while leaving the index fingers pointing straight out.
Why – Kali is the goddess of destruction. Her image is as strong as it is intimidating! Sharp teeth, a bright red tongue and a belt made from human arms! O, and a necklace of severed heads. She is the ultimate power to conquer destructive forces but is also a symbol of deep love. This mudra is all about creating a sense of personal power and increased self-esteem through love to overcome the evil forces in our lives.
When – Although this mudra can obviously be done seated it can also bring in an extra element of strength in our asana. Use Kali mudra in Warrior One or even Tree or Mountain to stand strong and unshakable in your grounded standing asanas.
How – Bring left hand to heart with palm facing away and the right palm rested on top. Slide the hands over to clasp the fingers together to create a strong grip. Keep the elbows in line with the hands.
Why – The much-loved elephant God, Ganesha is the remover of obstacles clearing the way for us to move onwards and upwards. This mudra is about creating confidence in our path and resilience to move past the obstacles in your way by creating strength of heart and character.
When – Use this mudra in meditation, visualising yourself conquering your fears and overcoming challenges. To strengthen this seal you could also chant ‘om ganapatayei’ on each exhale to invoke the characteristics of this deity into your life.
How – Bring the little and ring fingers to meet the thumb, middle and index fingers pointing straight out.
Why – The mudra for prana, stimulating the energetic life force in our bodies. Associated with the root chakra this mudra is about stimulating the free flow of this prana through the body creating a sense of vitality, awakened energy and positivity. It is also said to be great for quality sleep, decreasing fatigue.
When – This is a great mudra to use at the start of your asana practise. Have a few minutes to sit with your breath and your Pran mudra to create a sense of grounding and connection. While that prana flows freely with your breath get ready to stimulate your body and mind for your yoga practise.
How – Interlace the fingers with palms facing the chest and thumbs pointing up to the sky.
Why – Meaning ‘unshakable trust seal’, this mudra is about creating self confidence and faith in ourselves as well as confidence and faith in greater things being ahead of us. This is also a mudra for healing after that trust may have become abused or broken by another person. Having unshakable trust in ourselves can feel empowering and liberating, making us feel like we can take on any of life’s challenges!
When – Sitting in a comfortable seat bring your hands into your Unshakable Trust Seal. Use this time to create a mantra totally personal to you that will help create a sense of empowerment in your own judgment. Something like, ‘I trust my own intuition’, ‘ I have faith in my own judgment’ or ‘I am confident in my path for the future’. Repeat your mantra out loud or just in your thoughts.
How – Left hand palm up with fingers cupped together at the abdomen. The right hand rests into the cupped left hand with the thumb pointing up to the sky.
Why – Representing the pestle and mortar, this mudra is about overcoming times that test our strength and resilience. The right hand also represents the masculine power of Shiva, slowly breaking down and destructing what is testing in the palm of the left.
When – This is a great mudra to use in a visualisation mediation. In a comfortable seat, bring your hands into your Shivalinga Mudra and close the eyes. Once you feel settled in your seat and your breath bring into your mind a time or situation when your strength and resilience has been tested, placing it into the cup of your left hand. Using the right hand start to create circles in the left palm. Imagine grinding it away, visualising how you can overcome that test of your strength. You may even want to imagine you could blow away the dust of what is left when you are finished.