What is the Viparita Karni Mudra, its benefits, and how to do it? Learn everything you need to know about this powerful yoga mudra.
Definition – What is Viparita Karni Mudra and its Meaning, References, and Mythology?
Viparita Karni Mudra is one of the Mudra based on different Yogic postures. Unlike Hasta Mudras, Viparita Karni is based on different bodily postures, mainly based on Hatha Yoga. It is also called an inverted psychic attitude (attitude of the psychic union). Let us break it down into three different words to understand its meaning.
Viparita – the Sanskrit word “Viparita” can be translated as inversion, reverse, or upside-down.
Karni – “Karni” can be translated into doing or which does or action.
Mudra – “Mudra” in this context, is used to describe a pose/seal.
Viparita Karni can be translated as Inversion or Inverted posture. In other words, Viparita Karni Mudra includes all bodily postures that involve keeping the blood flow toward the head. This consists of all of the postures where we keep the legs up and head down or postures in which our head is located below the heart level and all of the topsy-turvy poses. A few bodily postures are called a part of Viparita Karni Mudra: Sarvangasana, Ardh Halasana, Sirsasana (Headstand), etc. You can even do this Mudra with wall support, so most of the Yogic Postures included in the Viparita Karni Mudra can also be practiced with wall support.
As this Mudra or Pose involves increasing the blood flow towards the head, it improves our brain’s function. More blood flow means better oxygen and resource allocation to the brain. But one thing to note is this should not be practiced by individuals with any heart ailments or hypertension. These Postures/Mudras should be practiced in moderation as our cervical region is not designed to carry the entire body weight for extended periods.
One of the important texts of Hatha Yoga, “Hath Yoga Pradipika,” mentions this Mudra/Pose. In the Hatha Yoga Pradipika, it is mentioned that if you practice this Mudra, you can awaken your Kundalini Shakti with the help of gravity.
Alternate Name of Viparita Karni Mudra
An Inverted Psychic Attitude.
How to Do Viparita Karni Mudra?
- In Viparita Karni Mudra, We practice different bodily postures /Hatha Yoga Postures, which involve keeping the blood flow towards the head.
- You can practice all of these postures with wall support as long as you are not getting any pain or discomfort.
- We are going to practice Ardh-Halasana (Or half plow pose) with the help of wall support. Similarly, you can also practice the other postures with the help of a wall. However, Ardh-Halasana is sufficient to give you most of the Viparita Karni Mudra benefits.
- Start by bringing your mat close to the wall where you can comfortably place your legs.
- Now, slowly and gently lie down on your Yoga mat so that your upper body (from your head to the lower back) should remain on the mat.
- Now, slowly bring your legs up on the wall. Make sure not to press/lock your knees inside.
- Keep your neck and spine comfortably straight. And your spine should touch the ground completely.
- Completely close your eyes.
- Practice deep breathing.
- Make sure to practice the counter-balancing postures, such as Ustrasana or Matsyasana.
- You can practice this Mudra 10 minutes after a meal for a short time.
Viparita Karni Mudra Benefits
- It increases the blood flow towards the head region where our brain is located, so it increases the blood flow towards the brain, improving its functioning.
- This Mudra greatly helps digestion, so if you have digestion-related issues, you can practice it 10 minutes after a meal or for a short time.
- This Mudra can even help with infertility-related issues, making you more fertile.
- It can help promote your sexual well-being.
- It is believed that it activated the Visshuddhi Chakra or The Throat Chakra.
- It helps to improve sleep.
- It is very helpful for people who suffer from Low Blood Pressure issues.
Viparita Karni Mudra Precautions and Contraindications
- Make sure you practice the counter-balancing postures, such as Ustrasana or Matsyasana.
- If you are having hypertension or heart-related issues, then do not practice this.
- Practice it in moderation. As our body is not perfectly designed to stay longer in inversion, we must practice it for a shorter period and gradually increase it.
When and how long to do Viparita Karni Mudra?
- If you have digestive issues, it will help you resolve them.
- If you want to promote your brain functioning, practicing this will bring positive outcomes.
- You can practice it to supply more blood to the head in case of Low Blood Pressure issues.
Morning is the ideal time to do any yoga or Mudra. Our brain is at its best in the morning and during the daytime. So, you are more likely to be able to concentrate easily. Therefore, you should practice this Mudra from 4 am and 6 am to get the most effective outcomes.
If you are having difficulty with this during the morning, you can do this Mudra later in the evening too.
Practicing this Mudra for a minimum of 20-40 minutes daily is recommended. Whether you wish to complete it in one stretch or two threes that last between 10 and 15 minutes, it’s up to you. Based on research, the best way to practice an exercise for at least 20 minutes is to get the best benefits of that particular Mudra.
Breathing in Viparita Karni Mudra
To enhance your practice, you can practice breathing techniques with this Mudra:
- Deep breathing: When you inhale, let the belly come out; when you exhale, let the belly relax comfortably in.
Affirmation in Viparita Karni Mudra
“I believe that my heart can heal my deepest wounds.”
The Viparita Karni Mudra is a simple but effective mudra that anyone can do regardless of age or flexibility. It helps to calm the mind, improve concentration, relieve stress and anxiety, and promote a good night’s sleep. If you want to learn more about mudras and how to incorporate them into your daily life, check out our Mudras Certification Course, which covers all 108 mudras in detail.