Meditation Forum

Vipassana Meditation Forum => Meditation, Practice And The Path => Topic started by: tug on June 11, 2019, 09:10:52 PM

Title: Numb legs while sitting
Post by: tug on June 11, 2019, 09:10:52 PM
Hi. I'm new to sitting on a cushion, and I'm going to attend a retreat soon where we will be sitting for long periods but I can't find a position which does not result in dumb legs, usually within 10 minutes. Some say the numbness passes with time but that's not been my experience to date.

I've heard people say:
- it's due to leg shape and can't be overcome (i.e. due to blood vessels being pinched because of chunky thighs)
- it's due to nerve impingement due to bad posture
- just sit on a chair and forget the cushion
- working through the pain is part of the process so just learn to put up with whatever pain is experienced.

I've looked at quite a few websites/videos, including the ones in this forum and have tried out various approaches without any success to date. I feel that the lack of clarity and constant changes of approach is getting in the way of my mediation, hence this post.

Any thoughts?

Title: Re: Numb legs while sitting
Post by: Goofaholix on June 11, 2019, 09:28:33 PM
I've been sitting for 20 years and I still occasionally get numb legs.  When it happens it's generally either that the cushion is too hard or my trousers are too tight (usually if I'm wearing jeans). So adjust those first if you can.

When cross legged on a cushion you should be aiming to have your knees on the ground, if they are not then google the butterfly stretch and do these stretches daily (and adjust your cushion height if necessary) until you can achieve that.  If you are trying to do the lotus you might find the Burmese posture easier, google that.
Title: Re: Numb legs while sitting
Post by: tug on June 14, 2019, 03:47:23 AM
Thanks for the advice. I dig out an old mediation stool that I made for my wife some time ago and much to my surprise I managed to sit for 45 minutes without any real discomfort. I'll do the stretches and try the cushion from time to time, but i'm glad to have found something that looks promising.

Thanks again

Title: Re: Numb legs while sitting
Post by: Chaska on July 11, 2019, 04:40:42 PM
When I started 10 days Vipassana in 2016 I use to have numb legs a lot.
I have started to practice more yoga stretches such as : seated pigeon pose (you can look on YouTube and do it everyday it is easy :)) and it helped me. Now it happens but rarely and usually it is because of the cushion.
Title: Re: Numb legs while sitting
Post by: VipassanaXYZ on August 10, 2019, 05:45:54 PM
Tug, sometimes it takes longer than a few months of continuous practise, but it will become bearable with time.

And will clear up, dont react too much to it.

Some tips that might help: change the posture when in seated practice, example -right leg over left, and then left  leg over right in half-lotus.
Come out of meditation s l o w l y, give the legs a few minutes to wake up before getting up.

Try walking barefoot, massaging the foot with good oils (especially before sleep), warm water soaks, and ankle and toe stretches, Skipping rope will also help :)