What Are The Reiki Hand Positions And How To Use Them

Reiki hand positions are the way you use your hands to send Reiki to yourself and others.

The hands-on technique, with its main and secondary Reiki hand positions, comes after you go through the Reiki level 1 attunement.

This article is going to cover a slightly “modern” approach to the Reiki hand positions.

Chujiro Hayashi, the world’s second Reiki Grand Master trained directly by Mikao Usui, is considered to be the initiator of the reiki hand-positions system.

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Check out this article to study the traditional Reiki hand positions. They were initially introduced by Chujiro Hayashi and Hawayo Takata.

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At this stage, there are no symbols involved.

Remember that Reiki level 1 attunement is a special process that you go through simply because it takes you from your normal state to a higher vibrational one.

It’s a big change and therefore there is no need to rush things. Taking it slow and learning step by step is the best way to do it.

Therefore, using only your hands first and practicing solely on yourself is what most Reiki Masters recommend.

How To Use The Reiki Hands-on Technique

In Reiki the intention is key, so first and foremost you have to declare your intention of sending light through your hands. This will help activate the flow of energy.

Rubbing your hands in order to activate the energy centers is another way to do it, or better yet, use this technique in addition to the previous one.

If you are attuned for the second or third degree, you can activate your palms and energy centers using the Reiki symbols.

Before we get into “the rules” of hand positions, bare in mind that there are no constraints when it comes to practicing Reiki.

Place your hand on your body where you feel the energy is needed. As a best practice, always start from the head down, to push the residual energy into the ground.

Usually, you’ll feel when it’s time to remove your palms, but having them over the affected area for 10 or so minutes is enough.

Always be thankful when you complete each session and declare your intention of ending the self-treatment.

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The difference between the main and secondary Reiki hand positions refers to the parts of the body they are used for. As an example, the main positions might refer to the head, heart or kidneys, while the secondary ones focus on shoulders, knees or soles.

The Main Reiki Hand Positions

First Position – On top of your head

This is where the main flow of energy takes place. You have to put your hands on this spot for developing a better consciousness and clean the pathway to a greater connection with Divinity and true self.

first reiki hand position

Second Position – Between the eyebrows and lower back of your head

We are cleaning here to activate the center of intelligence, intuition, wisdom, and memory.

second reiki hand position

Third Position – with the palms on the eyes

We are bombarded with visual pollution each day. Sending Reiki to your eyes will help you better perceive things that happen around us every day.

third reiki hand position

Fourth Position – On the ears

We are exposed to a lot of unwanted information on a daily basis. Cleaning the energy centers of your ears will also balance your brain hemispheres.

fourth reiki hand position

Fifth Position – The neck area

Communication and self-expression are vital to our life. Therefore sending energy at this level will help you in many ways including communicating rather than simply speaking.

fifth position 01
fifth position 02

Sixth Position – The center of your chest

Needless to say, we all have accumulated emotions inside us, some of which need deep cleaning. Using Reiki here will help you open your heart in a harmonious way.

sixth position 01
sixth position 02

Seventh PositionThe Solar plexus area

Responsible with the center of protection. Cleaning here will strengthen your inner security and it will also help energize the organs in that area.

seventh position 01
seventh position 02

Eighth Position – The navel area

3cm below the navel, this is the center of sexuality, creativity, and ambition. Healing here will help you have healthy relationships, socialize and will make you feel more comfortable with yourself.

eighth position 01

Ninth Position – Kidneys

Not only healing here will enhance the navel area energy center, but it will help you regain your daily energy and vitality as well as sustain and help the organs.

ninth position 01

Tenth Position – The sacral area

The center located at the inguinal level (sacral chakra – Svadhishthana). Healing here will enhance your grounding, vitality and strengthen your physical body in time.

tenth reiki hand position

NOTE: the following energy centers, mentioned as hand positions, have a back-projection as well: Second, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth.

The Secondary Reiki Hand Positions

On The Shoulders – Have the emotional and initiative centers of energy

When we carry a lot of emotional “baggage”, these two places tend to be tense and stiff. Cleansing here will release any blockages and relax the area.

shoulders secondary reiki hand position

On the hips – We have also emotions and desires that are left unexpressed

Cleansing here will give you a feeling of peace and contempt.

hips secondary reiki hand position

On the knees – We have physical tension most of the time

I think we can all agree that these centers hold a lot of the body pressure and need to be kept clean and relaxed.

knees secondary reiki hand position

Feet And Soles – We step every day in places filled mostly with unwanted energies

We bring it home and those energies will spread and accumulate in certain areas. Cleaning here will balance our inferior body segments and ground us properly.

4 Techniques To Enhance Your Treatment Using The Reiki Hand Positions



Simply put, this represents the idea of sending light to someone, something or an event. Just hold your palms up with the intention of sending Reiki to the desired person or situation. It is advisable to visualize the beam of light ejecting out of your hands. This action will amplify its effect.


We can use this on ourselves as well as on a student. 

While holding your palms one next to the other, slowly scan the body (from the head, down to the feet) for any difference in vibration. The received sensations may differ from one person or one area to another. The sensations may be such as tingling,  pulsating, stinging, cold or warm.

CLEANING (Combing)

This is a technique that you will rarely find written anywhere and it is very effective. Basically, after self-treatment you can use your hands or just visualize how you are brushing with your hands any residue/negative energy from your energy fields, sending it to the ground (like combing). It is done slowly, with no rush for all your body.


Considered a more pointed way of treating yourself and others, it is a very useful method of unblocking and purifying different areas of the body.

Simply use a rhythmic tap, using your fingers (or the tip of your fingers) on the affected area.

For example, I use this method for the thymus gland – while tapping I visualize it activating and becoming more energized.


This last one is not considered a technique but rather a cleaning procedure that follows the treatment.

After your self-treatment, simply use the right arm to swipe on the left arm and vice versa – 3 times for both. The same for the upper body part – use the right arm to swipe starting from your left shoulder and finishing to the right hip. Then use the left arm to swipe from the right shoulder to the left hip.

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This will clean any energetic residue that could have been left behind during therapy on yourself as well as on others.

How To Apply A Fast Self-Treatment Using The Reiki Hand Positions

There is a way to “save time” when practicing Reiki. Of course it does not have the same effect as the complete self-treatment but still, it is quite useful.

Follow the steps below and stay in each position at least 3-5 minutes.

  • Step 1 – Place one palm on top of your head and one on the root chakra.
  • Step 2 – Place one palm on the 3rd eye chakra and one on the sub umbilical chakra.
  • Step 3 – Place one palm on the throat chakra and one on the solar plexus chakra.
  • Step 4 – Place both palms on the heart chakra.

Try to feel the Universal energy flowing through you. Try to be aware of yourself and how the energy floods your whole body from head to toe. Imagine being that channel that becomes more and more cleansed each day.


If you’re new to Reiki and trying to grasp all the new information this might be too much at first sight.

But don’t worry!

After a few sessions, you’ll get the hang of it and all the Reiki hand positions will become second nature.

How did you find this article? Was it helpful?

About Vlad and ReikiScoop

Vlad is a Usui Reiki Grand Master/Teacher who has also gained the Master/Teacher Level in Karuna, Shamballa MDH, and Gendai Reiki, with 15+ years of experience. He now shares his knowledge through ReikiScoop. You can always read more about Vlad and ReikiScoop in the about section.

12 thoughts on “What Are The Reiki Hand Positions And How To Use Them”

  1. Alot of these techniques for some reason i have seemed to know it without learning, been using it for years unknowingly. Thank you for the great article. Im new to the reiki system and want to learn more. I have met a reiki grandmaster long before and it was said that in my past life i had acquired the knowledge and the symbols where already drawn on me, and that if i want i could activate again for attunement. Don’t know what that meant.

    • The attunement is exactly what you have described. And indeed, there are people who are more inclined to practice spirituality than others. It’s also possible that Reiki has been transmitted to you from a past life.

      • Thank you .I recently learnt USUI Reiki Level 1and 2.But you have explained the hand positions so clearly that even a layman can understand and practise it Thanks a ton.Much gratitude
        God bless

        • Hi there Sonia,

          I am grateful that you found the information useful. Thank you so much for your kind words!


  2. Hi Vlad, Thanks so much for this. I did my Reiki Level 1 two years ago and your article was a great reminder – slightly different to what I was shown but in many ways even better. I didn’t know about the Tapping and I find it very interesting. Where else can you use it apart from the Thymus?

  3. Clad, Thank you for all your articles and information I am learning…apparently the divine felt you would be a great resource for me.

    Love and light

  4. Thank you for your brilliant article. Reiki has been in my life since 2002 & it has been a great support for me. Your article has rekindled & reminded me how much our lives are improved with self healing with regular practise with Reiki. I had lost my commitment but now feel renewed ind inspired start afresh 💚 thank you 🦋

    • Hi there Susan and thank you for your kind words!

      I perfectly understand you as I have been through many stages before truly understanding the essence of Reiki and other spiritual practices.

      I am so grateful that you have re-started and that you found the offered information useful!



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