MEANING: Now for the real thing… full Lotus or ‘Padmasana’.
The Lotus posture is named for the lotus flower — a type of water lily that has multiple petals and floats on ponds and slow streams. When you see a real lotus flower, up close and personal, you understand how this posture inherited its name. The lotus flower possesses a calm, quiet beauty. It roots in the silt of the lake or pond and its blooms face toward heaven, and because it moves with the water yet doesn’t lose its rooting, it is the perfect symbol not just of yoga, but life…
BENEFITS: Blooming into full lotus brings many benefits to the body:
- One of the most powerful energetic postures of Eastern philosophy, it is said to awaken kundalini (energy)
- Along with this, it eases, calms and can be a sanctuary for the mind.
- Physically, it stretches the ankles and the knees and stimulates the stomach and pelvic regions
HOW TO DO IT: Proceed with caution! The Lotus is an advanced posture, so take your time, listen to your body and let your petals unfold… slowly.
- Sit on the floor in the Sukhasana (Easy posture). Your back is straight, your mind is calm, and you are completely focused and relaxed
- Take your right foot in your hands, and slowly place it on your left thigh as close to the crease of your hip as you can. Try to align your left heel with your hip joint while keeping your left ankle straight
- Take your left foot in your hands, and slowly place it on your right thigh as close to the crease of your hip as you can. Try to align your right heel with your hip joint while keeping your right ankle straight
- Be aware of correct posture as you open your chest, lengthen your spine, and gently pull your shoulders back; feel yourself relax as you sit proud, with your chin held high
- Extend your arms over your thighs, and rest your hands and wrists on your knees, with palms facing upward
- Place your hands in the Jnana Mudra position.
- Close your eyes and hold this pose for five to ten slow deep breaths.
- Open your eyes; take your left ankle in your hands and slowly lower your left foot to the floor, and then take your right ankle in your hands and lower your right foot to the floor
- Relax for a few breaths in the Easy Posture. Well done!
HELPFUL HINT: Alternate the foot on top each time you practice this posture and keep a record of tightness or things you notice. See how quickly your body responds and eases – it’s amazing!