According to HealthandYoga, an organization dedicated to health and well-being, the benefits of meditation include improvements in respiration, blood flow, the ability to relax and concentration. Yogis and meditation practitioners recommend using a cushion while you sit to avoid, and even correct, back pain.
Meditation leads to a deeper self-awareness. While this is normally a positive thing, back pain can be caused by energy blocks in the lower root chakra (lower back pain) or heart chakra (upper back pain), because feelings arise during the meditation practice. The chakras (energy centers) are connected to deeper feelings that are the root cause of back pain while meditating.
Proper meditation posture is the most important determinant of being able to sit. Your chin, neck, shoulders and tailbone should be in a direct vertical line. If you are like most people you will need a cushion to obtain this posture. Sitting with an incorrect posture is the second-most-common reason for back pain while meditating.
What Are Meditation Cushions?
According to the Online Meditation Guide, meditation cushions are typically rectangular (zabuton) or circular (zafu) cushions filled with either foam padding or Styrofoam beads. The fabric is typically canvas of one color.
How to Choose a Meditation Cushion to Prevent Back Pain
Recall the ideal posture. You will want a cushion that supports your tailbone and rolls your sit bones forward. Many people use both a zabuton and a zafu, sometimes a few of each. Experiment with various combinations to find the proper height to align your body.
Where to find a meditation cushion
You can buy meditation cushions at most local spiritual or health stores. Many bookstores also sell meditation cushions, located in the religion or Zen section.
Consult with a meditation instructor to ensure proper meditation posture and technique. If back pain persists consult with a doctor, acupuncturist or massage therapist to work on the chi energy in your back.