Yoga Asanas

Padmasana - Lotus pose

Posted on 2019-01-13


The Padmasana is a meditative pose that is performed while seated. It originates from ancient meditation practices of India. To pose in Padmasana one foot is placed on the thigh of the other. Shiva the meditating God of Hinduism and the founder of Buddhism are depicted in this position.

Padmasana pose is commonly referred to as the Lotus pose in English which is derived from the translation of the Sanskrit words Padma which means lotus and asana which means pose.


Padmasana Step by step Instructions

Step 1: start in the seated position with your feet stretched out straight and together.

Step 2: lift the right leg with your hands and place it on the thigh of the left leg. The foot should be so close to the upper thigh that it touches the navel.

Step 3: in the same way, lift the left foot and place it on the right thigh as close as possible to the stomach. You may also interlock both feet from the same position if your flexibility allows it by pushing the shin one leg up the groin area over the other leg and pulling the other one under.

Step 4: Draw the knees as close to each other as possible so that your legs interlock well. Place your hands on the knees in mudra position.  When in the position it is now time for you to focus on your breathing. Take deep breaths and take your mind to meditation.

Modifications

The most common modification to this pose is doing it in the half variation. You may also use your hands to help the feet stay in pose if you are not able to keep them intact for a while. However, do not force the pose especially when there is pain in the knees.

Preparatory poses

Ardha Padmasana, Virasana, Baddha konasana, Ardha matsyendrasana

Follow up poses

Adho mukha svanasana

Benefits

  • Stretches the ankles and the knees

  • Calms the brain

  • Opens and strengthens the hips

  • Improves focus and concentration

  • Stimulates the pelvis, spine, abdomen, and bladder.

Bandhas

Jalandhara Bandha

Drishti

Between the eyebrows (Bhrumadhya Drishti) or the tip of the nose (Nasagra Drishti)

Variations

The half lotus is the most common variation in which one foot is bent and resting on the floor while the other is bent and resting on the other foot as it should be in lotus position. This variation is easy and ideal for beginners who meditate for a long period of time because it is not very tiring.

Traditions

This asana originates from the traditional Hindi cultures of meditation. It has been performed for many centuries and is believed to be the ultimate yoga pose. It has been said in traditional texts to destroy all diseases and awaken kundalini energy. It has been used in yoga, Hindu, Buddhist, and Jain Traditions.

Pose type

Seated pose, cross-legged

Beginner tips

  • Care should be taken not to overstretch the ankles when getting to the position.

  • If you are unable to keep your feet in crossed position, you can hold with your hands for the set time as your body becomes more flexible with practice.

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