Padmasana (Lotus Position): Types, Step-by-Step Guide, Benefits and Precautions

What is Padmasan?

Padmasana, also known as Lotus Position in Sanskrit (पद्मासन), for tranquility and mindfulness., is a seated yoga posture where we sit cross-legged with feet resting on opposite thighs. In simple terms, Lotus Position is the stance in yoga where we sit comfortably, cross our legs, and place each foot on the opposite thigh. It is an advanced pose for hip-opening. It stretches the body and improves pelvic flexibility. Padmasana yoga pose also promotes concentration and aligns body posture. It also engages the core and the spine muscles. This pose engages the hip flexion or psoas muscle by pressing palms into the thighs to lift the spine and tilts the pelvis forward, allowing the hips to flex. During Padmasana, the thigh muscle or sartorius muscle helps in the movement of and external rotation of the hip, which contributes to the overall flexibility required for Padmasana. This asan also activates the hamstrings or the muscles at the back of the thigh to stabilise the knees, protecting your ligaments and cartilage. It also engages the muscles in the front side of the lower leg and foot, muscles at the back of the shoulder, and rib muscles engaging your lower and upper body.

What are the Benefits of Padmasana (Lotus Pose)?

Besides stretching and improving flexibility, below are the some more benefits of Padmasana:

  • Strengthens and Lengthens: Padmasana targets specific joints, strengthening the knees and the muscles between the pelvis and lower joint. It enhances overall joint flexibility. This seated posture also elongates the spine and improves ankle joint flexibility.
  • Improves Flexibility: This pose opens the hips, knees, and ankles, stretching the hip muscles and base of the spine. It orients the pelvis and thigh bone, preparing you for advanced poses like tolasana and parvatasana with increased ankle and knee joint mobility.
  • Improves Breathing: Practicing rhythmic patterns during Padmasana, especially in variations, supports deep inhales and exhales. This improves your lung capacity.
  • Improves Focus: One of the major Padmasana or lotus pose benefits is improving concentration and focus. It enhances your concentration, improves brain functioning and prepares you for other Padmasana variations.
  • Corrects Body Posture: Padmasana aids in maintaining a steady spinal alignment, balancing and revitalising your body’s energy.
  • Relaxes Lower Body: The interlocking of legs during Padmasana stimulates acupuncture points, activating the parasympathetic nervous system for a calming effect on the stomach, gallbladder, spleen, kidneys, and liver.
  • Reduces High Blood Pressure: Doing Padmasana in a routine reduces high blood pressure and pulse rate.
  • Strengthens Digestive System: Padmasana yoga pose also improves blood flow to digestive organs and helps resolve digestive issues like constipation and loose motion. It cleanses the digestive system, enhancing metabolic function.
  • Improves Sleep: This pose has a calming effect that effectively combats insomnia. Regular practice of this pose can help you sleep better.
  • Improves Anxiety Disorders: This pose also lowers stress hormone production and reduces stress and anxiety.
  • Improves Digestion: Padmasana yoga provides a gentle abdominal massage, redirecting blood flow and addressing digestive issues like constipation and loose motion. It cleanses the digestive system, enhancing metabolic function.
  • Strengthens Pelvic Region: This yoga pose is famous for strengthening the pelvic region. It supports female reproductive organs and eases childbirth pain. Regular practice of this pose can open the hip muscles.
  • Prepare your Body For Advanced Yoga Poses: It also prepares your body for advanced Padmasana yoga poses and variations. 

Different Types of Padmasana (Lotus Postion)

In Actual, there are more than 40 types or variations of Padamasan (Lotus Position). From those 40+ types below are the 8 core types or variations of Lotus Positions for the beginner level;

  • Ardha Padmasana or Half Lotus Pose: Ardha Padmasana involves placing one foot on the opposite thigh while keeping the other on the floor. This variation prepares you for the full padamasan.
  • Scale Pose: In scale pose, lift both legs into a balanced position, engaging the core and creating strength in the arms. This variation not only challenges your stability but also enhances focus and concentration.
  • Seated Mountain Pose: This pose is similar to tadasana or mountain pose but in a seated position. This variation of Padmasana encourages a tall spine and grounded presence. It promotes a sense of stability and inner strength.
  • Half Lotus Hands Behind Head Side Bend: Combining the Half Lotus with a side bend, this variation involves interlocking the hands behind the head, gently stretching the torso sideways. It enhances flexibility in the spine and opens the chest.
  • Half Lotus Pose Arms Raised Forward Bend Flow: Incorporating a forward bend with arms raised, this variation adds a dynamic flow to the Half Lotus Pose. It promotes a full-body stretch, particularly targeting the spine, hamstrings, and shoulders.
  • Half Lotus Pose Hands Flow: This variation involves various hand movements and gestures while in the half lotus pose. It integrates breath with movement, enhancing the meditative aspect of the yoga.
  • Half Lotus with Props: You can modify the half lotus pose by using props like blocks or cushions. This variation lets you gradually ease into the pose, supporting proper alignment and comfort.
  • Lotus in a Chair: Lotus Pose in a chair makes it accessible for those with mobility issues. 

Also read: 7 Most Beneficial Yoga Poses

Steps-by-Steps Guide to Padmasana (Lotus Stance) 

Here’s your easy guide to practice Padmasana:

  1. Sit on the floor with your legs stretched out (like in dandasana). Bend your right knee to the side and hold your knee and foot with your hands. Move your right foot towards your left hip, keeping the movement in your hip, not your knee.
  2. Then, bend your left knee, turning your thigh outward like you did with the right one. Lift your left shin, guide the left foot over the right, and tuck it into the right hip.
  3. Place the tops of your feet on your upper thighs and let your knees move towards the floor. Keep your ankles from rolling in.
  4. Sit up straight, lift your chest, and make your spine long. Sitting on a folded blanket can help your spine stay straight.
  5. Breathe slowly and deeply, and stay in this position as long as you feel comfortable.

Also Read: Early morning yoga benefits

What Precautions to Follow While Doing Padmasana?

Here are a few Padmasana precautions to consider when initiating this yoga pose:

  • Injury and Durgery: If your knees or ankles are hurt or you had surgery, it’s better not to do this pose. It might make you feel uncomfortable and add to the pain. People with sciatica or lower back problems should also skip the Padmasana because it can hurt the nerves in your lower back.
  • Low Physical Strength: If your knees are a bit weak or hurt a little, use props like pillows or blankets for comfort. If your back aches a bit, try sitting against a wall. Start with a few breaths in the pose and slowly increase the time. 
  • Pregnancy with Complications: Pregnant women with back pain or swollen ankles should skip Lotus Pose. 
  • Arthritis: Those with arthritis in their knees should also avoid it because it can press on the stomach and pelvic area. 
  • Others: If you’re older or just starting, and your knees, ankles, or lower back aren’t strong, it’s best to avoid this pose. It might make your legs feel uncomfortable. 

If your physical issues aren’t too bad, try half lotus pose or use props for more comfort.

Also Read: Effective yoga postures for mental health

Tips for Practising Padmasana (Lotus Pose)

  • Getting into Lotus Pose needs flexible hips. To do this pose safely, you must stretch certain muscles called tensor fascia lata and gluteus medius in your hips. These muscles help your hips handle the twisting motion of Padmasana.
  • Don’t forcefully push your feet into Lotus position; it can hurt your knees. Take your time to become flexible enough. When you bring your foot close to your groin, ensure your inner and outer ankles stretch evenly. Don’t strain one side more than the other.
  • If you use Padmasana for meditation benefits or breathing exercises, it’s common to cross your legs the same way every day. This can make your hips uneven. To avoid this, switch the way you cross your legs each day. Remember, on even days, start with the right leg; on odd days, start with the left. This simple tip can keep your hips balanced.
  • Use supportive props, and take the help of a yoga instructor to guide you through the same.
Practicing Padmasana tips
  • If locking your legs seems hard, try the Half Lotus Pose. If your hip muscles are tight, do some hip-opening exercises first.
  • Do not push yourself hard to excel in this pose. Your mobility and flexibility may not allow you for this pose. Go easy and start with easy yoga poses such as tadasana, balasana, bhujangasana, and cat-cow pose.
  • Prepare yourself for Padmasana with gentle stretching poses such as baddha konasana, janu sirsasana, and ardha matsyendrasana.
  • Practice counterpose after Padmasana. These counter poses include paschimottanasana, adho mukha svanasana ,savasana and supta padangusthasana. It will help neutralise your body after performing Padmasana.

Takeaway

Padmasana is a beneficial yoga pose for pregnant women and those trying to conceive. It can ease childbirth and help release stress during pregnancy. This yoga pose can also resolve your digestion issues, such as constipation. It improves your breathing, flexibility, and body posture. It can also strengthen your spine. However, if you have any injury, recent surgery, arthritis or knee problems, you should start with simple yoga poses and then practise advanced yoga postures. You can use props or take the help of a yoga instructor to guide you through simple yoga poses. You can also start with ardha Padmasana or half lotus pose before trying Padmasana. Remember to prepare yourself with preparatory or warmup yoga poses and then close your yoga session with counter yoga poses. This will balance your body after an intense yoga session.

FAQs

Which leg is to be placed first in Padmasana?

In Padmasana, the right leg is placed on the left thigh first, followed by the left leg on the right thigh, crossing the legs with both feet resting on the opposite thighs.

What muscles do Padmasana work?

Padmasana primarily engages muscles in the hips, thighs, and lower back. It strengthens the hip flexors, opens the hip joints, and improves knee flexibility. Additionally, it promotes better posture and stimulates the abdominal muscles.

What is the correct position for Padmasana?

The correct position for Padmasana is to sit with a straight spine, cross the right leg over the left thigh, then the left leg over the right thigh, and place both feet on the opposite thighs, keeping the hands on the knees in a meditation pose.

Who should avoid Padmasana?

Individuals with knee or ankle injuries, hip problems, or limited flexibility in the hips should avoid Padmasana. Those with recent surgeries, arthritis and knee problems should also avoid doing it to prevent exacerbations. Pregnant women with complications during pregnancy and in advanced stages of pregnancy should also avoid this pose.

Which diseases are cured by Padmasana?

Padmasana can help those with hypertension, breathing problems, and constipation issues. However, it’s important to remember that Padmasana is not a cure for any disease; it can help you manage these medical conditions.

How much time should we sit in Padmasana?

Beginners may start with a few minutes and gradually increase. Listen to your body, and aim for a comfortable duration. Ensure that you maintain good posture and do not strain the knees or hips.


Posted

in

,

by

Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *