V-Shaped Cushion for Sitting Support

This entry was posted on Sep 13, 2016 by Charlotte Bell.

Most people learn pretty quickly that comfort is crucial when you practice sitting meditation. Maintaining your natural spinal curves in meditation is the key to ease in sitting. The key, even if your hips are very flexible, is making sure your pelvis is higher than your ankles.

You can accomplish your perfect sitting position in many ways—by sitting on a Zafu, a Zen Cushion, Meditation Bench or a V-Shaped Meditation Cushion. Depending on the structure of your hip joints—which is unique to all of us—the V-Shaped Cushion may be a great, supportive choice for your sitting practice.

In 1997, I bought a V-Shaped Cushion from Hugger Mugger. Since then, I’ve sat many 30-day, 21-day, 18-day and 14-day retreats on my V-Shaped Cushion, and I’ve never regretted it. It’s the most comfortable choice for my body.

Here’s why: Because my hip joints externally rotate like crazy, my legs need more support than traditional cushions can give. The V-Shaped Cushion slants downward so that it supports your entire leg and encourages your pelvis to tilt forward—provided your hips externally rotate easily.

Is a V-Shaped Cushion Right for You?

You can check whether a V-Shaped Cushion is appropriate for you by sitting on a 5-inch stack of firm blankets and observing whether your legs are higher or lower than your pelvis. If your knees are lower than your pelvic bones, the V-Shape will likely work nicely for you. If your legs are higher or at the same level as your hip bones, they won’t be able to rest on the “legs” of the cushion, and you probably won’t find it comfortable. If this is the case, a Meditation Bench might be your best bet.

I sit my cushion every day at home and have taken it on many long retreats, and at 19 years old, it’s still in perfect condition. All of Hugger Mugger’s meditation cushions are filled with organic buckwheat hulls. The covers are zippered, so that you can add or subtract filling as you like.

Here’s a post that gives more explanation on the how and why of choosing a meditation cushion.

About Charlotte Bell
Charlotte Bell discovered yoga in 1982 and began teaching in 1986. Charlotte is the author of Mindful Yoga, Mindful Life: A Guide for Everyday Practice and Yoga for Meditators, both published by Rodmell Press. Her third book is titled Hip-Healthy Asana: The Yoga Practitioner’s Guide to Protecting the Hips and Avoiding SI Joint Pain (Shambhala Publications). She writes a monthly column for CATALYST Magazine and serves as editor for Yoga U Online. Charlotte is a founding board member for GreenTREE Yoga, a non-profit that brings yoga to underserved populations. A lifelong musician, Charlotte plays oboe and English horn in the Salt Lake Symphony and folk sextet Red Rock Rondo, whose DVD won two Emmy awards in 2010.

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