7 Best Meditation Pillows to Help You Find Your Zen
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A meditation pillow can go a long way in making your meditation positions more comfortable. Here's what you should know before you buy one.
Meditation pillows are the ultimate mindfulness accessory
If you’re one of the many people who practice meditation on the regular, good for you.
Research links meditation to reduced stress and anxiety, a greater attention span, and better memory. And those are only a few of the benefits of meditation.
One of the best things about meditation is the fact that you can do it from anywhere with relatively few, if any, accessories. You can even meditate on the floor in the corner of a room.
Still, many find that sitting on the ground can be rather uncomfortable. And if you’re new to meditating, this might stop you from keeping up with the practice. That’s where a meditation pillow comes in handy.
What is a meditation pillow?
A meditation pillow is just what it sounds like: a pillow that adds comfort during meditation.
“Most people get pins and needles in their legs or an achy back after sitting on the floor for a short period of time,” says Stephanie George, a certified yoga instructor and personal trainer. “By sitting on a meditation pillow, this lifts your hips up and helps support the natural curve of your spine.”
The benefits of using a meditation pillow
Comfort is one of the key benefits of using a meditation pillow, but it turns out that there are far more ways this type of product can enhance your meditation experience.
Here are a few reasons you may want to try one, according to experts.
It may help you meditate for longer periods
There’s no set amount of time you should spend meditating, but George suggests getting zen for at least 10 minutes at a time. Of course, this is hard to do when you’re uncomfortable.
But discomfort isn’t the only thing that can take away from the practice. There’s such a thing as too comfortable, as anyone who has fallen asleep while meditating knows.
“A meditation pillow also helps keep you awake by keeping your back straight instead of leaning up against something, which primes your body to go to sleep,” George says.
(These meditation quotes will help keep you grounded.)
It can help you maintain a strong, upright posture
If you choose to practice in an upright position, a meditation pillow improves posture, according to Ashley Matejka, a yoga teacher, holistic health and wellness advocate, and creator of Wellevance, which offers wellness workshops.
“It creates a more erect posture by limiting the slouching of the spine and also relieves stress on the hips,” she adds.
It encourages you to practice every day
Meditation pillows can be the foundation for a meditation space, explains Stephanie Mansour, a Chicago-based personal trainer, yoga instructor, weight loss coach, and corporate wellness trainer.
“Having your own corner with your meditation pillow ready every day will help you stay motivated to meditate,” she says. Adding a comfy pillow is one easy way to make daily meditation a habit.
What to look for in a meditation pillow
When shopping for a meditation pillow, experts say there are a few main factors to consider: how you sit, the pillow’s material, and how firm it is. Ask yourself the questions below as you shop.
Does it work with your sitting position?
When looking for a meditation pillow, Mansour notes that it’s important to consider how you like to sit while meditating.
“There are different shapes of meditation pillows made for different sitting positions,” she says. “If you like to sit crisscross, a firm, round meditation pillow may be perfect for you.”
What’s it made of?
Mansour recommends paying attention to material and firmness when picking a meditation pillow.
“Soft, comfortable material is definitely important for improving comfort while meditating,” she says.
How firm is it?
Whether you pick a super soft or very firm pillow will depend on the position you like to sit in.
“If you like to rest your legs on the floor, a soft and cushiony meditation pillow may be best,” says Mansour. “But if you’d like to have your legs off the floor, a firm, elevated pillow may work best.”
The best meditation pillows to enhance your practice
Ready to shop for a meditation pillow? Here are some of the products experts recommend to their clients.
Florensi Meditation Cushion
This large, velvet Florensi meditation pillow is designed for ample comfort. It features buckwheat hulls, which help it maintain its shape.
“Instead of flattening over time, this pillow stays fluffed and comfortable,” says Mansour. “This pillow also helps align your spine in a way that allows for extended periods of sitting.”
(Here are some other meditation tips.)
Mobile Meditator Inflatable Meditation Cushion and Travel Pillow
The great thing about this inflatable meditation pillow is that you can use it both during your practice and as a travel pillow, making meditation easy on the go.
“You can flatten this pillow to fit in any bag and then inflate it when you arrive at your next destination,” says Mansour.
Another reason experts like this product: the Mobile Meditator meditation pillow has three adjustable inflatable chambers that provide optimal spine, hip, and thigh support.
(Here’s a 5-minute meditation you can try.)
Hugger Mugger V-Shape Cushion
Mansour likes to recommend this smaller meditation pillow from Hugger Mugger for people with back pain who struggle to sit up straight for long periods of time.
“The V shape supports posture and reduces pain while sitting,” she says. “It also comes with a convenient handle for carrying.”
It comes in eight different colors and has a zipper that allows you to adjust the filling to meet your comfort level.
Brentwood Home Crystal Cove Oval Meditation Yoga Cushion
This is one of Brentwood Home’s best sellers, not only because of the comfort it adds to a meditation practice but also because of its beautiful design. It was created by Los Angeles yoga instructor Angela Kukhahn.
It’s made out of 100 percent vegan materials, is eco-friendly, and has a removable cover that you can machine wash.
Crafting Love and Hope Meditation Cushion
Matjeka recommends this rectangular meditation pillow for beginners because it works when you’re upright as well as when you’re lying down. (Beginners should also note these common meditation mistakes.)
“The beautiful Crafting Love and Hope meditation cushions are handmade by resettled Syrian refugee artisans in the United States and filled with buckwheat hulls to add inspiration and comfort to your meditation practice,” she says.
Blue Lotus Crescent Meditation Cushion
Each of these cushions is crafted in Albuquerque, New Mexico, from organic buckwheat and natural cotton canvas.
“The crescent meditation pillow is designed to support the thighs while easing pressure from the knees and hips, allowing you to concentrate on your meditation,” says Matjeka.
These Blue Lotus meditation pillows come in several color options and are body contouring, so you can use them in a myriad of positions.
Project Full Moonstone Grey meditation cushion set
Although on the pricier side, this Project Full meditation pillow is made from recycled, 100 percent GOTS-certified organic cotto. (The Global Organic Textile Standard, or GOTS, independently certifies products as organic.) It’s filled with 6.5 pounds of buckwheat hulls.
“The meditation cushion set provides comfort and support for the back and hips, as well as the knees and ankles,” says Matjeka.
The loops at the top make it easy to move around the room or take with you on the go.
Next, check out these meditations for stress relief.
- JAMA Internal Medicine: "Meditation programs for psychological stress and well-being: a systematic review and meta-analysis"
- Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine: "Effects of the transcendental meditation technique on trait anxiety: a meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials"
- Frontiers in Human Neuroscience: "Brief Mindfulness Meditation Improves Attention in Novices: Evidence From ERPs and Moderation by Neuroticism"
- Journal of Alzheimer's Disease: "Stress, Meditation, and Alzheimer's Disease Prevention: Where The Evidence Stands"
- Stephanie George, certified yoga instructor and personal trainer
- Ashley Matejka, yoga teacher, holistic health and wellness advocate, and creator of Wellevance
- Stephanie Mansour, a Chicago-based personal trainer, yoga instructor, weight loss coach, and corporate wellness trainer