Derived from Yoga, Padmasana means sitting in the form of a lotus with your legs folded in a crossed manner and the roof of each foot placed on the opposite thigh. Keep the spine straight, shoulders relaxed and the arms on your knees. The elbows can be slightly bent.
So, why go through the hassle of sitting in this position and straining your shin, knees and ankles for an extended period of time instead of just sitting in the regular cross-legged position? Thought you’d never ask.
To start with, it lends you a stable posture ideal for meditating for long periods of time. A good breathing pattern, calmness of the mind and a high level of alertness are experienced effortlessly. Not surprisingly, it is also a good position to experience Kundalini Shakti (cosmic energy) as it eases the rise of energy from the Mooladhara Chakra (perineum) to the Sahasrara chakra (head).
Physiologically, it stimulates the spine, hips, shins, thighs, abs & bladders and stretches the knees & ankles. Insulin secretion is regulated leading to the cure of diabetes. It apparently also improves your appetite and strengthens your digestive system. In women, it is believed to alleviate menstrual pain and ease child birth during pregnancy.
A word of caution – meditating in Padmasana can be quite addictive. Choose to do so at your own risk as it may lead to too much fun. Now, go ahead and enjoy some!