Samana Vayu Mudra is a hand mudra or gesture in yoga, used for improving digestion and assimilation. In Ayurveda, the thumb represents the fire element, the middle finger indicates space element and the index finger, the air element, ring finger indicates earth element and the little finger indicates water element. Samana Vayu mudra brings together these five elements, which is said to give therapeutic benefits.
Samana Vayu is primarily responsible for digestion, absorption, and assimilation of food. It functions at the navel region and responsible for working of the organs involved in digestion like stomach, liver, small intestine, pancreas, etc. Disturbances in Samana Vayu can cause problems with the digestive system.
Samana Vayu Mudra is aimed at improving the function of Samana Vayu. It balances all the energies in the body is also referred to as the ‘balancing air’. It is easy to practice and can be practiced any time of the day.
How to do Samana Vayu Mudra?
Sit in any comfortable seating posture. Meditation postures like Padmasana, Siddhasana, Swastikasana, Vajrasana, etc. are ideal for the practice of mudras. Sukhasana and Ardha Padmasana may also be used. It can also be done sitting on the chair with spine straight or even in the standing pose if you are not able to sit on the floor.
In the sitting position, place the hands with palm pointing upwards on the thighs or the knees.
Close your eyes and take few deep relaxed breaths with awareness on the breathing process.
Bring your little, ring, index and middle finger together and bend it over to touch your thumb. All the fingers are touching together. You can do it with both hands. This is the Samana Vayu hand mudra.
Remain in this position for 15 to 30 minutes as per your convenience. Maintain your awareness of the energy flow in the body. Feel the changes that the mudra brings about in your system.
To release the mudra, relax the fingers and open your eyes.
Benefits of Samana Vayu Mudra
Samana Vayu Mudra improves digestion.
It balances the metabolism.
It improves the functioning of the liver.
Samana Vayu Mudra removes loss of appetite.
It balances the body energies and the Tri-Doshas (Vata, Pitta, and Kapha) of the body.
Samana Vayu mudra strengthens the body from inside and gives confidence of mind.
It helps with all gastric troubles and hypertension.
Vyutkrama Kapalbhati is one of the variations of Kapalbhati or the skull shining breathing technique. It is mentioned in the yogic text Gheranda Samhita. In Vyutkrama Kapalbhati, water is sucked in through the nose and expelled through the mouth. It is a good technique to remove sinus related problems and to clean the nasal cavity, throat and the pharynx.
Vyutkrama Kapalbhati is part of Shatkarma or the six purificatory practices of Hatha Yoga. In Sanskrit, Kapal means skull and Bhati mean to shine. It cleans the skull of impurities and makes the face shine. This practice is usually done in the morning, preferably after brushing the teeth.
Vyutkrama Kapalbhati is similar to the practice of Jala Neti. In Jala Neti, a Netipot is used to pour water into one of the nostrils and the water is expelled from the mouth. But in Vyutkrama Kapalbhati, no pot is used. Instead, the water is sucked in directly through both nostrils using a vessel or from the palm of the hands and expelled from the mouth.
How to do Vyutkrama Kapalbhati?
To start the practice, bowl of slightly warm water. You can add a tablespoon of salt (to one liter of water). Warm salt water aids in cleansing the mucous lining of the nasal cavity and avoids irritation.
Vyutkrama Kapalbhati practice is done in the standing position.
Cup your palms and collect water in it. Take the palms close to your nostrils.
Tilt your head back at an angle and pour the water into the nostrils. This will need a little practice in the beginning. Some use a vessel or even a glass to tilt and pour water into the nostrils.
With practice, water will flow down into the throat and will be expelled out through the mouth.
Repeat the process a few times to get a good cleaning effect.
Benefits of Vyutkrama Kapalbhati
Vyutkrama Kapalbhati cleans the mucous from the nasal cavity and throat.
In Gheranda Samhita, it is mentioned that this practice removes Kapha Dosha (as per Ayurveda) and gives good health and vigor to the body.
Spiritual benefits include activating some energy centers in the brain which have trigger points in the nasopharynx. It is said to activate the Bindu Chakra at the back of the head.
In the beginning stages, there would be fear of water entering the lungs. With practice and the right tilt of the head, this can be achieved over time.
Sheetkrama Kapalbhati is one of the variations of Kapalbhati or the skull shining breathing technique. It is mentioned in the yogic text Gheranda Samhita. In Sheetkrama Kapalbhati, water is sucked in through the mouth and expelled through the nose.It is an excellent way to remove mucus from the nasal cavity, throat and the pharynx.
Sheetkrama Kapalbhati is part of Shatkarma or the six purificatory practices of Hatha Yoga. In Sanskrit, Kapal means skull and Bhati mean to shine. It cleans the skull of impurities and makes the face shine. This practice is usually done in the morning, preferably after brushing the teeth.
How to do Sheetkrama Kapalbhati?
To start the practice, take a glass of water. Slight warm water can be used to avoid irritation in the nasal cavity while doing the practice. You may also add a pinch of salt. Warm salt water aids in cleansing the mucous lining of the nasal cavity and avoids irritation.
Sheetkrama Kapalbhati practice is done in the standing position.
Now curl the tongue to create a channel. Create suction and suck in water with the curled tongue making a hissing sound.
Fill the mouth with water and hold it for few seconds.
Bend your trunk forward with the head tilted downwards and nostrils pointing towards the floor.
Try to expel the water through the nose which should happen naturally by gravity. Try to tuck the throat inside towards the back of the neck to make it easier for the water to flow from the mouth to the nasal cavity and out through the nostrils.
In the beginning stages, you can expel the water every few seconds in installments. Spit out the remaining water from the mouth. Once you are an expert, you can expel all the water in one go.
Repeat the process a few times till you finish the water from the glass.
Benefits of Sheetkrama Kapalbhati
Sheetkrama Kapalbhati cleans the mucous from the nasal cavity and throat.
In Gheranda Samhita, it is mentioned that this practice removes the wrinkles of the face and makes the face glow. It also mentions that the person who practices Sheetkrama kapalbhati can overcome disease and old age.
It removes the Kapha Dosha (as per Ayurveda) and gives good health and vigor to the body.
Spiritual benefits include activating some energy centers in the brain which have trigger points in the nasopharynx. It is said to activate the Bindu Chakra at the back of the head. When this center is awakened, nectar or Amrit flows and makes the body immortal.
In the beginning, there may be a fear of water entering the lungs. Sheetkrama Kapalbhati is easy once you understand that the water flows out through the nostrils by the action of gravity and one doesn’t have to exert much. You have to bend and tilt the head at the right angle, so that gravity does the work automatically. Water flows naturally from the mouth to the throat, then to the nasal cavity and then out through the nostrils.