Aching Arms When Lying Down in Meditation



During group meditation [lying], my arms are aching.

What does it mean? What should i do?



—iza , Israel


Dear Iza,

What it means is that you haven’t yet found your best position for meditation.

Without seeing you, your general body type, and the way in which you position your body on the floor, it is impossible to know exactly what to do. But hope that you will find help through exploring the following questions:

  • Are your arms close by your sides, or spread wide? Spreading them wide can impair circulation in some people and cause discomfort. Neither do you want your arms touching the body, because that restricts the breathing. Usually it is best to rest your arms at about a 30-degree angle from your torso.
  • Have you tried small cushions under your forearms and hands? Or under the entire arm and hands?
  • Have you tried sitting upright for meditation? That is the best position if you seek higher states of consciousness, and if you have no injury that prevents that. You can sit in a chair or cross-legged on a cushion; just make sure you can keep your spine straight. If your knees are off the floor when you sit cross-legged, a chair is a better solution. Either way, you need to be able to sit upright with your spine straight, chin level, chest and abdomen open, and body relaxed. It may take some time to train your body to sit comfortably in this way for more than just a few minutes, but it really is the best meditation position for most people. Please try it.

Blessings on your practice,