Maha Mudra (Great Seal) | iHanuman

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Maha Mudra

English Name: 
Great Seal
Practice Type: 
Practice Level: 
Asana Image: 
Model: Rod Stryker Credit: David Martinez
Asana Description: 

in Maha Mudra, the legs are as in Janu Sirsasana, but the heel is in contact with the perineum. The arms are stretched straight as you hold onto the big toe with the forefinger, middle finger and thumb (as you do in utthita hasta padangustasana) of both hands and all 3 bandhas - mula, uddiyana and jalandara are engaged.

Start in Dandasana and bend the right knee to a 90 degree angle to the left leg, placing the right heel in contact with the perineum. 

Reach hands towards the big toe of the left foot and grasp the big toe with the forefinger, middle finger and thumb. Keep the arms straight as you pull on the toe of the left foot.

1. Descend the inner groins, as you extend from the outer hip to the outer knee as you do in Svastikasana (also janu sirasanana). 

2. Pull your fingers against the big toe to stretch the arms and draw the outer shoulders back as you move the back body in and up as you do in Padangusta Dandasana. Maintain that as you lift the front body up from the pubic bone to the navel and the navel to the sternum.

3. Engage the 3 major bandhas of the body to create the "great seal".

Draw back from the outer heel to the outer hip as you descend the inner upper thigh down to the floor and stretch the back of the knees. Draw the back body in and up as you lift the front body in and up also.

Release the hands from the foot. Straighten the right leg back to dandasana and repeat the pose on the other side. 

Sanskrit Pronunciation: 
Classification: 
Energetic: 
Benefits: 

From Iyengar Yoga for Motherhood, "This pose is recommended for leucorrhea and dysmenorrhea, pre-menstrual tension and those who are prone to miscarriages due to glandular dysfunction. This pose is essential for early postnatal recovery, Recommended after 2 months recovery in the case of a caesarean birth. Maha mudra helps correct displacement of the uterus, cures leucorrhea, and tones the abdominal organs. It relieves headaches, heaviness, and burning in the chest, dizziness and blackout."

Beginners Tips: 
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Modifications and Props : 

Sit up on height to keep the pelvis from tilting backwards.

Use a strap to reach the foot if necessary.

Contraindications: 
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Sequences: 

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