Let’s get practical!
You can’t enjoy meditating if your back hurts or your leg and foot are asleep (I know this from experience). Here are 5 practical tips to answer your questions about how to sit:
1. Be comfortable. What is important is that you meditate. It does not matter if you sit in a chair, on a cushion, on a bench or lie down. One caveat: I do not recommend lying down if you’re sleepy as it’s too easy to fall asleep, which pretty much ends your meditation.
2. Practice good posture. Good spinal alignment prevents back pain and supports full, deep breathing. As you practice good posture, it becomes more natural and it tones your core muscles. Good posture consists of keeping the natural s-shaped curve in your spine and keeping your head level while aligning ears, shoulders and hips. Avoid slouching.
3. Elevate your hips. As you sit, slightly elevate your hips so that they’re higher than your knees (as in photo). Achieve this by placing a cushion, blanket or towel under your sitz bones (boney bumps in your bottom). Your knees should be bent at a right angle and your ankles under your knees. If your feet don’t reach the floor, place a stool or cushion under your feet.
4. Position your hands. Place hands on your thighs, either palms up or down, at the bend between hips and thighs. Or, rest your hands, palms up on top of each other in your lap. You may also rest your hands inside the bottom of your rolled up shirt (see photo). Relax your shoulders and commit to your hand position. Part of quieting the mind means keeping your body still during seated meditation.
5. Do a body scan. Once you’ve taken your “seat”, do a quick body scan from head to toe. Do you notice any areas of discomfort? If yes, adjust it. For example, if it’s too much to hold your back straight, put pillows behind your lower back to support your spine (see above photo).
Besides sitting on a chair, you can also sit on any of the following:
A crescent-shaped cushion
A bench for kneeling
A rounded cushion
These options are particularly helpful to add variety or to find what is most comfortable for your body on any given day.
If you rather listen to me discuss these tips, click on the video below.
If creating more calm in your life is one of your goals, use the Goal Setting for Success Workbook to help you visualize achieving this. Download your free copy here.
Join me in comments to share any challenges or questions you have about starting to meditate. If these tips helped you please LIKE below and SHARE with a friend.