Lion Pose

Last Updated: May 12, 2018

Definition - What does Lion Pose mean?

Lion pose is a seated yoga posture which incorporates a powerful breathing technique to execute the full pose. It is an excellent posture for releasing tension in the muscles of the chest and face. It is also traditionally believed to eradicate disease.

Enter the pose by sitting on the heels, with the palms on the knees or on the ground in front of them, fingers splayed. A deep inhalation is drawn in through the nose, followed by a forceful exhalation making a roaring “ha” sound, like a lion. While exhaling, the mouth opens wide, the tongue sticks out and the muscles at the front of the throat contract.

The Sanskrit name for lion pose is simhasana.

Lion Pose

Yogapedia explains Lion Pose

The breath in this pose should pass over the back of the throat, as this is said to stimulate the tonsils and the immune system. It strengthens the lungs, the throat and the voice. It is also believed to cure bad breath. The exhalation can be performed two or three times in succession, or as many times as one likes.

As well as stimulating and stretching the muscles of the chest and face, lion pose specifically works on engaging the platysma, which is the flat muscle at the front of the throat. Practicing lion pose is said to keep this muscle firm during the aging process, preventing it from pulling on the corners of the mouth and wrinkling the neck.

Different variations of this posture place the hands in different positions; for instance, the fingers can face back toward the body. Some texts suggest the ankles should be crossed so that the body rests on just one heel, with the heel stimulating the perineal area.

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