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Benefits of Lotus Pose & Its Variations

March 14, 2022 4 min read

Lotus pose (Padmasana) is a pose that has been widely used for meditation throughout history. This cross-legged seated position is an asana that some yoga practitioners find totally attainable and others, despite flexibility elsewhere, find it nearly impossible. If you’ve always wanted to achieve lotus pose, keep reading to learn what it requires and whether it can actually be achieved by everybody.

What are the benefits of practicing lotus pose?

Just by looking at it, you can probably tell that this posture opens up the hips. Additionally, it’s said to settle the nerves, improve focus and concentration, and foster the right conditions for deep meditation.

Lotus pose and it’s variations, including half lotus, provides a great stretch through the ankles and the muscles surrounding the pelvis. Regularly sitting in lotus can also help to lengthen the piriformis muscle which stabilizes the hip joint. This can be particularly valuable in providing relief for those that suffer from sciatic nerve pain.

Can everyone practice lotus pose?

Benefits of Lotus Pose | Mukha Yoga

Lotus pose (Padmasana) is a pose that has been widely used for meditation throughout history. This cross-legged seated position is an asana that some yoga practitioners find totally attainable and others, despite flexibility elsewhere, find it nearly impossible. If you’ve always wanted to achieve lotus pose, keep reading to learn what it requires and whether it can actually be achieved by everybody.

What are the benefits of practicing lotus pose?

Just by looking at it, you can probably tell that this posture opens up the hips. Additionally, it’s said to settle the nerves, improve focus and concentration, and foster the right conditions for deep meditation.

Lotus pose and it’s variations, including half lotus, provides a great stretch through the ankles and the muscles surrounding the pelvis. Regularly sitting in lotus can also help to lengthen the piriformis muscle which stabilizes the hip joint. This can be particularly valuable in providing relief for those that suffer from sciatic nerve pain.

Can everyone practice lotus pose?

Have you ever met someone who claims lotus is not only easy but comfortable!? How about someone who appears to be flexible in many ways, but can’t even come close to full lotus? Does anatomy play a part? Can everyone actually achieve full lotus?

Benefits of Lotus Pose | Mukha Yoga
Cross Legged Pose | Mukha Yoga

Easy cross-legged pose with mod cushion.

The answer is maybe - but that doesn’t mean they should.

Lotus is about more than just having open hips. In order to achieve the full asana, you need to have enough mobility to maintain a forward curve in the lower back plus the capacity for the pelvis to tilt forward while keeping the sitz bones grounded. Knees are also an area that greatly impacts the accessibility of the pose, as it requires a lot of flexion. Stiffness or a limited range of movement in any of the mentioned areas can create a barrier in achieving full lotus.

Due to differences in skeletal anatomy, the ability to improve your range of motion enough to achieve lotus may or may not be attainable. The unique construction of your femur and hip socket will ultimately determine what can be achieved over time. For most people, practicing padmasana or a cross-legged seat position serves just as well. If you prefer to strive for lotus pose, make sure you listen to your body and always be compassionate and practice Ahimsa or non-violence towards your body.

Have you ever met someone who claims lotus is not only easy but comfortable!? How about someone who appears to be flexible in many ways, but can’t even come close to full lotus? Does anatomy play a part? Can everyone actually achieve full lotus?

The answer is maybe - but that doesn’t mean they should.

Cross Legged Pose | Mukha Yoga

Easy cross-legged pose with mod cushion.

Lotus is about more than just having open hips. In order to achieve the full asana, you need to have enough mobility to maintain a forward curve in the lower back plus the capacity for the pelvis to tilt forward while keeping the sitz bones grounded. Knees are also an area that greatly impacts the accessibility of the pose, as it requires a lot of flexion. Stiffness or a limited range of movement in any of the mentioned areas can create a barrier in achieving full lotus.

Due to differences in skeletal anatomy, the ability to improve your range of motion enough to achieve lotus may or may not be attainable. The unique construction of your femur and hip socket will ultimately determine what can be achieved over time. For most people, practicing padmasana or a cross-legged seat position serves just as well. If you prefer to strive for lotus pose, make sure you listen to your body and always be compassionate and practice Ahimsa or non-violence towards your body.

Recommended variations of lotus pose include half lotus, or sukhasana / easy-cross legged position. You may also choose to sit on a bolster or blankets to elevate the hips and change the rotation of the pelvis, making any of these variations more accessible.

Victoria Maybee l Mukha YogaBy Victoria Maybee; All Rights Reserved @2022

Victoria Maybee l Mukha YogaBy Victoria Maybee; All Rights Reserved @2022