Shankha is the Indian term for a conch. When this mudra is performed, the hands resemble a conch.
First, clench the left thumb with right fingers. Now, place the left fingers on the back of the right palm. Finally, join the tips of the right thumb and the left index finger.
The thumb, which represents the element fire, is encircled (and thereby subdued) by the fingers. At the same time, the union of left index finger and the right thumb results in an increase of element air. In other words, the Shankha mudra brings about a decrease of Pitta humor but an increase of Vaata and kapha humors within the body.
Benefits of Shankha mudra:
- Feverish feeling in the body
- Burning in the body/body-parts
- Allergic disorders, especially urticaria (skin- rashes)
- Voice (larynx) and throat (pharynx) problems
- Flabbiness/weakness/paralysis of muscles.
30 to 45 minutes every day, either at one stretch or in three parts (i.e., for 10 to 15 minutes, thrice a day). However, it may be performed for longer periods if necessary (e.g., when suffering from fever or manifestations of allergy).
People with a Vaata + kapha mix constitution should perform this mudra in moderation.
There is a simplified version of this mudra called ‘Sahaj shankha mudra’, which is performed by interlocking the eight fingers and bringing in contact the two upward-pointing thumbs. Benefits of this mudra are similar to those of the Shankha mudra.