The internet forward which gave me this link mentioned that it was a traditional Indian "punishment" for children..."uthak-baithak" (get up and sit down). But in south India, especially in Tamil Nadu, this is a form of obeisance to the Elephant God, Ganesha. We call it "thOppik-karaNam" (the "karaNam" part, meaning ear, refers to the holding of the ears cross-wise by the opposing hand.)
Certainly worthy trying if it's going to improve my brain power! I'm starting with 10 every day...taking me back to my childhood!