Hasta Yoga (Hand Yoga)

Jack Utermoehl

Hasta yoga, also known as Hastha yoga, focuses on the use of hand gestures, or mudras, to enhance physical, mental, and spiritual well-being. The term "Hasta" is Sanskrit for "hand," making this also known as "hand yoga".

By integrating powerful mudras into your yoga practice can influence energy flow and achieve a deeper state of meditation.

Hasta yoga uniquely emphasizes the power of yoga hand symbols, using specific hand positions to connect with the body's energy channels (nadis) and energy centers (chakras).

This hand meditation practice integrates these hand gestures into traditional yoga postures and other types of yoga.

Origins of Hasta Yoga

Hasta yoga originates from various yogic practices and Indian spiritual practices where mudras have been used for thousands of years in rituals, dance, and spiritual practices.

References to mudras can be found in ancient texts such as the Vedas, Upanishads, and various Tantric scriptures. The practice has evolved over centuries, integrating with different yoga traditions to enhance the overall benefits of yoga.

The philosophy of Hasta yoga is based on the belief that hand mudras can influence the flow of prana (life force energy) in the body. Each mudra can connect with specific energy channels and chakras modifying your energetic system and koshas.

Hasta Yoga Practice

The main principles of Hasta yoga include the use of powerful mudras in conjunction with asanas, pranayama (breath control), and meditation. These hand gestures, or yoga mudras for meditation, activate specific energy centers and channels.

Common Practices

  • Gesture of Knowledge - Jnana Mudra: The thumb and index finger touch.
  • Gesture of Life Force - Prana Mudra: The ring and little fingers touch the thumb.
  • Downward-Flowing Energy Seal - Apana Mudra: The middle and ring fingers touch the thumb.
  • Gesture of the Sun - Surya Mudra: The ring finger touches the base of thumb as the thumb folds over the ring finger.

Common Poses: Easy Pose (Sukhasana), Mountain Pose (Tadasana), Warrior II (Virabhadrasana II), Lotus Pose (Padmasana)

Suitability

Experience Level: Mixed Level (Suitable for All)

Physical Demand: Gentle Movement

Mind-Body Engagement: Balanced Mind-Body

Adaptability: Highly Adaptable

Focus Area: Energy Flow and Spiritual Growth

Notes

Practicing Hasta yoga can enhance energy flow, activate chakras, and purify nadis. The use of chakra mudras, such as Prithvi mudra for root chakra and Padma mudra for heart chakra, in conjunction with traditional yoga practices creates a more holistic yoga practice.

Similar Styles

Hatha Yoga, Kundalini Yoga, Tantra Yoga

Equipment Needed

Required: None

Nice to Have: Meditation Cushion, Yoga Mat

Optional: Yoga Blocks, Blanket

References

"Mudras: Yoga in Your Hands" by Gertrud Hirschi

"The Healing Power of Mudras" by Rajendar Menen

"Mudras for Healing and Transformation" by Joseph Le Page and Lilian Le Page

"Mudras for Awakening Chakras" by Advait

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