Find the Best Seating for Meditation: Cushions, Pillows, Benches and Mats
The best types of meditation furniture that will fit in with your lifestyle, are known as the following: a Zafu (meditation pillow), a meditation bench, and a zabuton (large meditation cushion or mat). We’ll help you figure out which seating option is best for you as you read on.
There are a lot of seating options available on the market when it comes to meditation, whether it be Zen Buddhist, Kundalini, Buddhist Sati, Transcendental, Qi Gong, or Yoga, we thank you in advance for choosing Nirvana Prime as your go-to store.
To recap, here are the main variations of seating for meditation furniture:
Meditation Pillows and Cushions
Your meditation sessions can last anywhere from 5 minutes to over an hour, depending on where you are in your journey. Meditation cushions (zafu) provide support for your back and reduce the compression on your knees. If you plan on meditating for longer than 5 minutes, its important to keep your blood flowing evenly throughout your body. When focusing on chakras and mindfulness, we can get easily distracted by joint pain and numbness if we don’t use a proper seat and just sit on the floor. Meditation pillows have been proven to extend the amount of time that we are able to focus on our intentions by keeping our mind clear of these painful distractions in our body.
How to Use a Zafu Meditation Cushion
A zafu closely resembles a bean-bag in shape, but acts more as a pillow. If you’ve been practicing your sitting meditation on the floor, you might have noticed discomfort somewhere along the way. A zafu pillow takes the pressure off of your spine by displacing it throughout your glutes. By raising the body off the floor, it also relaxes the bend in your knees a bit. Many people have found the zafu cushion to be a great relief from chronic joint pain and obviously is also very beneficial to meditation. The zafu meditation pillow can be used on the floor by itself or can be placed on a cushioned mat (zabuton) for additional comfort.
Meditation Mats and Larger Cushions
Any time we are sitting with our legs crossed on the floor for an extended period of time, for meditative purposes or otherwise, discomfort and joint pain can arise from too much pressure on our tailbone, spine, ankles, and/or knees. A meditation mat (zabuton) can provide relief for those experiencing this type of discomfort and many people swear by this type of cushion. Sitting with our legs crossed puts our feet in an awkward position. This causes strain on the ankles and outside edges of the feet as they are in constant contact with the floor. In addition to the relief that a zafu meditation pillow provides, a cushioned meditation mat, called the zabuton, supports the ankles and feet.
How to Use a Zabuton Cushioned Mat for Meditation
A zabuton is a cushioned mat that can be used in conjunction with other meditation pillows, but can be used as a standalone remedy for joint pain associated with sitting on the floor. As zafus provide relief on your spine, zabutons relieve joint pain of the ankles and the pressure on your feet. Using this larger meditation cushion by itself won’t raise your torso higher than your knees, so you won’t get if you are experiencing discomfort in that area. In essence, it is just a cushioned mat on the floor. View all the benefits of a zabuton meditation cushion on the next page. There are many benefits to using this type of seating such as relief on your tailbone, ankles, and feet even when used as a standalone piece of meditation furniture.
How to Use a Zafu Pillow with a Zabuton Cushioned Mat
The Zafu and Zabuton set is the perfect type of seating for extremely long meditation sessions when a pillow or mat can’t provide enough support by themselves. Some people like to mix and match colors and textures while others like to go for an all-in-one motif. Regardless of your preferences, our website features some of the best Zafu/Zabuton sets on the internet.
Using a meditation pillow in conjunction with a cushioned mat is fairly straightforward. Just put the Zabuton on the floor first and put the Zafu on top of it. Its just that simple. This setup provides relief on all of the typical contact points that cause us discomfort and keep us from meditating for as long as we would like.
Maintaining an upright and supported posture is important when meditating and sitting for extended periods of time. While many people find the ‘seiza’ position favorable to crossing their legs, it can still cause discomfort and joint pain of the ankles, knees, and feet. This is where a meditation bench comes in handy. By supporting the weight of your rear end, it diverts the pressure that would otherwise be targeted to your knees and ankles. This type of meditation seating arrangement is often sought after by Japanese meditation practitioners, but anyone can benefit from its function. View our seiza meditation bench product page for more detailed information.
How to Use a Seiza Meditation Bench
A meditation bench is best used for its obvious purpose, but can also be used for activities that require you to kneel down for long intervals. Using a bench in this way is very easy. All you do is set the bench on a flat surface, slide your legs underneath it, and sit on the seat. This puts you in the seiza posture for Japanese meditation, but again, can also be great for other everyday activities.