Syl & Mind

Meditation posture: how sitting upright can be a struggle sometimes

As I sit in my morning meditation my left leg slowly goes to sleep. I know the feeling as this happens during most longer sits. My lower back start to hurt and my nose is itching like crazy.. My thoughts swing from paying attention to my meditation to the discomfort.

The internal ping-pong has begun 😉

Weather you meditate regularly, or, when you just started, we all recognize the feeling that our posture does not feel comfortable. What to do, ignore and “push” through, or, change posture and alleviate the discomfort? During my years of meditation I have tried both options. Now further along in my own practice as both participant as well as a trainer, I know there is not 1 way.

Each day is different, each day I am different and each meditation is different.

So now when the discomfort comes during a sitting meditation, I take below steps not only for myself but also in the guidance to my participants:

  1. Is the discomfort crossing a boundary of pain or is it “merely” a discomfort?
    • If there is pain, I gently move position and feel how the pain changes and re-focus back onto the meditation
    • If there is merely a discomfort, I acknowledge the discomfort and choose to accept this for the duration of the meditation. It will pass…
  2. Is the discomfort distracting me so much I no longer pay attention to the meditation?
    • If the answer is yes, I gently change position and kindly but firmly refocus on the meditation
  3. If all else fails, there is nothing wrong with sitting on a chair to meditate 😊
    • Letting go of the conceptual idea of how I should sit while meditation can be very liberating!
    • Also considering all my participants for whom sitting on a cushion on the floor physically is not possible, their meditation experience sitting on a chair is just a valuable!

Meditation posture


Sitting meditation posture: Where you sit is not that important, as long as your spine is as straight as possible for you. Not leaning too much into anything so you can stay alert, yet as relaxed and comfortable as possible and your breath can flow free. When you have backpains, the support of a pillow in your lower back can help as well as support under your knees when you sit on a meditation cushion.

Do you want more tips on meditation, reach out so we can have a (digital) coffee together to see if a meditation training would be something for you.