Vajrasana or The Thunderbolt Pose.
Vajr = Thunderbolt or Diamond
In our previous Yoga Basics blog we highlighted the Easy Pose or the Sukhasana as a fundamental Yoga pose upon which a Yoga practitioner builds an ever more complex routine and one that he or she returns to frequently for meditation and breathing exercises.
This blog is dedicated to the Vajrasana or The Thunderbolt Pose. The pose is also known as the Diamond Pose because the regular practice of the pose is believed to make one as strong as a diamond.
This is another fairly easy pose — in fact easier for those who find it difficult to sit cross-legged on the floor. However, those with knee issues must be careful. If the issues are mild you might want to consider placing a cushion between your calves and thighs as you sit back and settle into the pose. If in any doubt, avoid the posture altogether until you are able to discuss it with your Yoga teacher.
Kneel on your Yoga mat. You might want to fold a towel in two to cushion your knees;
Now sit back onto your calves;
Be careful not to dump all your weight on your ankles. Allow your heels to gently form a cradle for your bottom;
Place both palms on your knees;
Ensure that your back is straight, your chin parallel to the floor;
Close your eyes and breathe;
Hold the posture for a minute.
Another seated pose ideal for meditation and developing focus and concentration, it is also good for digestion and posture. Spending a few minutes in the pose increases blood flow to the abdomen and intestines, particularly because one is compressing the legs and thus minimizing blood flow into the lower half of the body. This naturally directs more blood into the upper body, in particular the digestive area, thus boosting digestion. Thus, it is a good one for those trying to rev up their metabolism.
Consider sitting in Vajrasana for a few minutes after a meal. Few are the asanas that can be done immediately after a meal. This is one of them.
The pose looks simple, but caution is advisable. Pregnant women, and those with knee, ankle and foot pain, and/or back problems are advised to do the pose only with expert guidance.
The posture is a good one for those who suffer from menstrual cramping, helping ease the pain.
It helps relieve lower back pain too. Since the pose insists on one’s spine being erect, there are obvious benefits to one’s posture. At the same time one will feel a gradual ebbing away of accumulated stress and anxiety and an improved ability to concentrate.
(Caution: It’s a good rule of thumb to remember to leave around 2 hours between a meal and an Asana, as most postures require that your stomach is relatively empty. For Vajrasana, however, an empty stomach isn’t necessary. Just ensure you don’t have any chronic knee and back issues.)