Your face is the index of your physical and mental health. And just as you work out your body to make yourself look and feel good, you can also work out your face to make it look good. The effectiveness of face yoga depends on how often you do it. Devoting 15 minutes every alternate day to face yoga can help improve your natural beauty.
How does face yoga work?
Face yoga involves specific facial movements works that increase the blood flow and, as a result, bring a luminescent glow to your face. Each facial exercise listed below will give a chiseled look to your face along with many other internal benefits, which might not be evident immediately but will be there for all to see in the long run.
- Sit in a comfortable position with your spine in neutral position
- Look up, stretching the front of your neck and get your chin to face the ceiling
- The front part of the neck is stretched while the back part of your neck will be compressed; shoulders are relaxed and should not be pulled towards your ears
- Look at the ceiling, drop your lower jaw. Then start stretching your lower jaw, first to the front and then slowly and firmly lift it up, so that the lower lip overlaps your upper lip a bit. Hold for 10 counts; drop it down again and create as much gap as possible between your lips. Repeat this movement 10 times.
- To counter this stretch, perform Jalandhar Bandha [chin lock] by pressing the chin to the chest and lengthening the back of the neck.
- This helps to develop a beautiful jaw line, strengthen the neck muscles and also helps reduce double chin.
- It also helps lower high blood pressure, ease snoring, sleep apnoea and respiratory problems.
- Assume the position of jaw drop
- Rotate your lower jaw clockwise slowly; make as big a circle as possible; perform 10 rounds
- Rotate your lower jaw anti-clockwise; make is as big a circle as possible; perform 10 rounds
- Maintain the stretch throughout the rotations
- Perform Jalandhar Bandha [chin lock] by pressing your chin to the chest so that you can neutralise the stress on your neck
Jivha mudra [The Tongue Lock]
Jivha Mudra is performed by simply touching the tongue to the upper palate and keeping it there with slight pressure.
- Sit comfortably in Sukhasana or any position you are comfortable in
- Place your palms on the knees, lean forward a little
- Place your tongue on the upper palate
- The mouth is wide open and you feel a good stretch on the upper jaw and the throat region (stretch your lower jaw slightly down and back to feel optimal stretch)
- Focus your gaze at the tip of the nose – Agochari Mudra [nose tip gazing]. Also called Nasikaa Drishti [gazing at the nose tip], one of the oldest recorded yogic practices
- Hold the mudra for 10-20 seconds with normal breathing [continue to breathe from the nostril and gradually increase the holding time] and release
- Relax and close your eyes for few seconds
- Get ready for Simha Mudra.
Your eyes might not be used to staring at the tip of your nose and hence may result in a slight headache initially. Closing your eyes will help dissipate the headache.
- Keep pressing the tongue as much as possible from the root and press it firmly against the upper palate to stretch the upper jaw.
- Do not throw your cheek bones wide apart in the process of stretching.
- This will create wrinkles below your nose which may become permanent with regular practice.
Simha mudra [Roaring Lion Pose]
This is the posture the lion assumes just before attacking its prey.
- Sit in a comfortable position, place your palms firmly on the knees
- Pressing your palms on the knees, lean forward slightly; hold this position and inhale
- As you exhale, open your mouth wide; stretch your tongue out from its root as if you are trying to touch the chin with the tongue
- Also, while exhaling, stretch your fingers wide apart with your palms firmly pressed against the knees
- Bring your gaze in-between your eyebrows – Shambhavi Mudra (eyebrow centre gazing) – and keep your gaze fixed until you are holding the posture.
- The stretching out of the tongue can be accompanied with a roaring sound. Hold this for 20-30 seconds while breathing normally and then release.
- You can breathe from the mouth as well as nostrils.
- Be careful not to bend only the neck while leaning forward; the whole upper body is bending forward as one unit
- Do not bend forward if suffering from any kind of backache
- Avoid in case of severe vertigo
Do not perform Jivha Mudra or Simha Mudra in case of toothache, pain in the jaws and throat or swelling inside the mouth
Both the above mudras are to be performed alternatively at least in three sets. Practice up to three minutes a day. These should be performed on an empty stomach.
All these exercises increase blood circulation allowing more oxygen and nourishment to reach your facial skin. Regular practice of these can make you look healthier, more energised and younger within a span of 2 – 3 months.
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