A mudra is a specific position of the body most often involving the hands and fingers which is used to symbolically channel the body’s energy flow for a desired effect or intention.
Adhi translates to “first” because this is the first mudra we do prenatally. It is a self-soothing gesture and comforts us during anxious times. Adhi Mudra draws the excess mental activity down into the body where it can be processed and grounded making it a good mudra to try when feeling anxious.
Adhi Mudra is an easy mudra to do at anytime, for example you can do it during meditation, in a yoga pose, during pranayama, or you can easily hold your hands in this position during a stressful moment in your day and no one will know that you are doing something to ease your anxiety.
How to practice Adhi Mudra
- Find a comfortable seated position.
- Hold your thumbs in the center of your palms and wrap your other fingers lightly around each thumb.
- Rest the knuckles of your hands downward on your lap (downward facing hands is associated with calming the mind while upward facing hands is associated with increased energy/alertness).
- Relax your shoulders, face, and forearms.
- Hold this gesture for a few minutes and notice how it feels, then release your hands.
Try combining this mudra with slow diaphragmatic breathing for extra benefit to calming anxiety.