This pose is named for the lotus flower, and was originally called the Padmasana position. This is a power yoga exercise which works especially well to open the hips and also to create flexibility in the ankles and to also create flexibility in the knees.
When it comes to thinking about the spirituality aspect of this yoga pose, the lotus position is especially calm and quiet and it really helps to bring about that feeling of contemplation.
When it comes to thinking about this yoga pose and its physicality, it is key to note that the lotus pose stimulates the nerves of your legs and the nerves of your thighs. It also helps you to tone your abdominal organs along with your spine and also your upper back.
This yoga pose visually looks like a triangle or a pyramid shape, and this yoga pose is said to harness life energy. Life energy includes knowledge, will and also action or it could even stretch to include that mystical energy of yoga practice.
The lotus pose is one of the most widely recognized yoga poses and even though it is extremely well-recognized, it is not often that suitable for beginners as it is considered to be an advanced pose.
This is a particularly great yoga pose for meditation too, and if this is what you want to practice whilst doing this yoga pose then you should make sure that you pick a convenient time for you.
This should be a time during the day where you can routinely schedule in time to practice some yoga without getting distracted or without being interrupted. Practicing yoga in the morning can really set you up for your day, and it will help your energy levels to stay high.
It is important that you really try not to make excuses to skip your exercise especially as you only need to devote 15-20 minutes of your day to practicing yoga.
You could do this exercise in the morning before you go to work, or during your lunch break in the afternoon, or when you get home from work to help you unwind.
How To Do The Lotus Pose
The lotus yoga pose does need some preparation before you get into doing the pose, just to make sure that you avoid any strain or injury when you are attempting the pose. You need to make sure that you prepare your hips, for instance, you can just sit cross-legged for a while just to warm up your lower body.
- Sit on the floor with your legs extended outwards – make sure that when you do this you keep your spine straight with your arms resting at your side.
- Bend your right knee towards your chest – then begin to rotate your knee outward from the hip, just so that the bottom of your right foot faces upwards. The top of your foot should end up resting where your hip bends.
- Bend your left knee so that you can cross your left ankle over the top of your right shin – the bottom of your left foot should be facing up towards the sky, and the top of your foot and ankle should rest just where your hip bends.
- Bring your knees together as close as you can – make sure to push your midsection towards the floor and then sit up straight. Press the outer edges of your feet down and onto your thighs, and lift the outer ankles. This will help to ease the pressure between your shins.
- Rest your hands on your knees – do this with your palms facing up, and bring your hands into gyan mudra (wisdom seal) which is where you join your index finger and thumb on each hand.
You should extend your other fingers but make sure that you keep them together. This will help to keep you calm while you pause for a few meditating breaths.
- When you are ready to finish, you should concentrate on releasing the full lotus pose – make sure you release the full lotus pose in a careful and slow manner and gently extend both of your legs along the floor. When you gradually maneuver out of the lotus pose you should pause at each stage for a few moments to focus on your breathing.
It is important to note that when you are doing this pose you should make sure that you avoid injury. If you have an injured knee, or an injured ankle, or if you have injured your hip or if you are suffering from any other chronic lower body injury then you should probably avoid this yoga pose.
This pose has a high risk of injury because of its demanding flexibility requirements. So, if you are a beginner at yoga then you should try this pose with some sort of supervision from a yoga instructor or just a friend to help you to master this pose.
If you struggle with flexibility then you can build yourself up so that you can gradually get into this pose without causing yourself any injury.
The last thing that we will note here is that nobody knows your body quite like you, so it is important to know and to accept your limitations. You should not force your body or you should not rush into these yoga poses because you could end up injuring yourself.
The Benefits Of The Lotus Pose
- The lotus pose is an advanced yoga pose, but it does have some awesome benefits. It is great for enabling opening the hips because hips can actually store emotions and traumas.
The hip area is where buried memories or feelings that were not processed during childhood, or adolescence or adulthood are kept.
This pose can really help you to release this build up of tension and stress. The lotus pose is the ultimate seated hip opener and it helps bring increased blood circulation to the hip area and to the pelvis area and to the legs and the feet too.
- The lotus pose can also really help you to give a deep stretch to the ankles and knees, these joints are crucial to our ability to run and to dance. The lotus pose increases the flexibility in all the vital joints and the important ligaments in the legs.
The lotus pose can also help keep your spine straight, in fact, the lotus pose is often associated with assisting good posture. The lotus position naturally keeps your back elongated and therefore helps to keep your spine straight.
- The lotus pose can also help relives menstrual pain, if practiced regularly it can actually help to prevent cramping, bloating, exhaustion and mood swings.
This pose is also great for the early stages of pregnancy. It really helps bring on a calmness, and it just helps to ground us and connect us to the earth. Sitting in this pose and practicing consciousness by deep breathing helps to connect us to our inner self (for more sitting poses, check out our guide here).
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