Help me find the right meditation chair!

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Prompted by my therapist, I’m attempting to take up meditation. I’ve cleared a spot in my second bedroom in which to get my ‘tation on, but I’m finding it difficult because the floor is so uncomfortable. I have back problems and need more support than those zafu/zabuton sets that I’ve seen in Yoga studios. (Besides, I’m not into any traditional methodology here, just a gal who’s been told I need to make time to clear my mind.)

So I’m on the lookout for some good meditation chairs. Because lawdy lawd, I need every bit of help I can get to try and help me pull this off.

I thought of using Cat’s beloved Back Jacks, but they just don’t get my juices flowing aesthetically. Here are some potential meditation chairs that DO…

The Water Hyacinth Meditation Chair is freaking gorgeous, but it’s pricey. Wow.

The Salubrion Seat looks pretty retro-futuristic, and totally portable.

I love the Gaiam rattan meditation chair, I do not like the $240 price.

This might be my favorite cushion I’ve seen so far. It’s pretty and easy to blend in with my decor. And unlike a chair, this can be stored a lot easier when not in use. But then again… I still need more support. Sigh.

Ooh, the Zaisu chair is cool. It’s like a fancier Back Jack. Hell yeah!

Anyone else into meditation? Do you use a special chair? If so, what’s working for you? Because floor-sitting ain’t working for me and my dumb back.

Comments on Help me find the right meditation chair!

  1. I use a big ol’ sofa chair since I also need good back support, and meditation is easier for me if I’m not thinking about how much my bum hurts on the ground. Sometimes, I’ll also just lay out a long yoga pad and lay flat on my back. When laying down, I run the risk of meditation time turning into nap time, but I don’t beat myself up over it. I can only nap for so long on a yoga pad, anyway, and I only meditate to relax & clear my mind… so if I end up napping, it really just means I over-shot my goal.

    • I typically meditate lying down as well because of my back. But when I do meditate at the alter I use a Zafu cushion. You might want to check out a wedge cushion for your back… If you decide to go the cushion/Zafu route, check out Zen Home Stitchery. It is a small home business owned by a woman from my local Zen Center. Her prices are reasonable and her quality is lovely (plus supporting independent businesses! WOOT!)

  2. I use a stadium chair that I covered in morrocan-styled fabric and padded with some old pillows that didn’t fit my decor anymore. The one I started with looked a bit like this:,or.r_gc.r_pw.r_cp.r_qf.&fp=4f1a0fa4efc22be5&bpcl=38093640&ion=1&biw=1619&bih=698&tch=3&ech=2&psi=m-6bUJ3bO6vKyQGn6IH4BA.1352396444269.1&wrapid=tlif135239644426910&sa=X&ei=uO6bUMSEEsjMyQHVzoEQ&ved=0CH4Q8wIwAw
    I have a buddy who basically created the same thing, but started with a rummage-sale dining chair that she hacked the legs off of, spray painted and recushioned. It looks awesome!

  3. I agree with trying walking or supine meditation as alternatives! Especially if you already sit a lot in your normal life~it can be nice to bring balance by doing something different. I had an injury in my sacrum (booty), and for a long time, I just used a regular old chair. What matters is how you sit in it. Sit erect, with your navel gently drawing in towards your spine (to engage your deep core muscles to support your back), and sit as far forward as needed to have your feet planted flat on the ground (with your legs bent at the knee in a 90 degree angle). A specially designed chair might (or might not) help your back problems (you could get physical therapist’s opinion if it is an injury or something serious). But for many people (including me in the past), chronic back pain is simply from not knowing how to support their own spine with their core muscles. Then we hang off our skeletons in weird ways all the time. If that’s the case for you, just practicing sitting up straight could help your back in addition to clearing your mind. I teach yoga, and I offer many different “seats” on simple props, like a block, blanket, or chair. Maybe someone with experience can help you try some variations. Also, yoga poses are designed to open the body up and prep it for meditation, so depending on your back issues, it might be helpful just to do some warm up and stretches before you attempt to sit. Good luck!!

  4. PS: Not sure what your therapist recommended, but just want to say that you don’t have to sit for long periods of time! For beginners, sometimes it is better to sit for 5-10 minutes and work your way up to longer times.

  5. I sit on my yoga bolster cushion with my legs crossed in front of me so my feet rest on the ground. The bolster pillow can stand upright in a corner or roll under the coffeetable when I’m done!

  6. Amber hit the nail right on the head: it’s not so much about what you’re sitting on as how you’re sitting. Here’s a great article:

    You can skip the beginning about lotus pose (although it is an interesting view into the science of yoga) and skip down to “The Pursuit of Well Being” and “Ready set sit” sections. This is a great (and free) way to sit for beginners.

  7. If you have any kind of comfortable chair with support already, you can just use that, be it a dining room chair, and office chair, a folding camping chair… If you feel you want to make it a little more special to set an intention for meditation, you could always drape it with a lovely scarf or sarong.

    I personally rarely do sitting meditation. I prefer to lie down, walk or dance, or hoopdance. There are so many different kinds of meditation that you can try loads and see what works best for you.

  8. Depending on your back issue, something low to the floor may not be the right choice for you. I usually alternate between lying down with my knees bent slightly, feet flat on the floor (I use a separate fancy yoga mat that I love to mark my space, even though I could just as easily lie on the floor) and sitting on a traditional style chair. When I looked at your picture of your living room, it seems that one of the ottomans could work, too. You want to be able to bend your legs at a comfortable angle for your back (which for me, is at about 90 degrees).

    Alternate with a yoga practice that suits your back and is also meditative, to further strengthen your back while increasing your meditation hours.

  9. I can’t sit to meditate. I just cannot clear my brain that way. I meditate by laying down in a reclined position and just… breathing, focusing and being aware of my own self. Sometimes my cat comes and lays in my lap and he ‘meditates’ too. By taking advantage of an open lap to take a nap. It’s nice for both of us.

  10. At the Buddhist center I attend, we have both meditation cushions on the floor and regular chairs, with more chairs than cushions. You do not have to sit on the floor to meditate. If you find you’re focusing on your discomfort, then its time to sit in a regular chair. What’s important is that your back is straight but not tense. Good luck!

  11. Like the previous posters, I can’t sit or cross my legs, but reclining works. I can even meditate while doing a mindless task like dishes or folding clothes(Most women do, if you ask me!). Since it’s more about the mind than the body, but being comfortable helps, just do what works for you. And I definitely agree about the nap–that’s a recharge too, just ask any cat or dog!

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