1.  Hold the mala with the knots at the top.  Use thumb and forefinger from each hand to hold beads on either side of the knots. (Left hand hold bead on left, right hand hold bead on right)

 

2.  Pull hands apart and away from the knots.  You can pull pretty hard!

 

3.  To tighten, pull small beads at the end of the string.