medical risks of meditation

Gregory Clement, modified 8 Years ago.

medical risks of meditation

Posts: 5 Join Date: 8/17/13 Recent Posts
Well, not the meditation but the physical posture. Sitting or kneeling for long periods of time without movement must reduce blood flow in the legs. The muscles are compressed and the blood vessels are twisted.

Is there anyone out there with medical qualifications who can advise on the risks? Deep vein thrombosis perhaps? Pressure sores? How long is too long without movement? Thanks for any advice you can give.
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Daniel M. Ingram, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: medical risks of meditation

Posts: 3214 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
Those are reasonable questions.

All the retreats I have gone on are sitting/walking, alternating back and forth, and I think that the walking is really important.

I don't know of any hard data on any of those risks, but I haven't heard of anything happening beyond a few people who threw their backs out (but tons of stuff can do that), and that is about it. No blood clots. No pressure ulcers.

That doesn't mean they haven't happened, but I just haven't heard of them.

Anyone else?

Daniel
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Sweet Nothing, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: medical risks of meditation

Posts: 164 Join Date: 4/21/13 Recent Posts
This depends on factors such as age, flexibility, health, fitness, lifestyle etc. I dont think ethnicity matters.

I saw a video by Shinzen Young called "Quickest way to Enlightenment."

Link : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gYSSf71Vo7w


He said that the fastest way to make progress is to do long strong determination sits. Such as, sitting in a fixed position without moving the limbs for anywhere between 1-10 hours or possibly even more. He said that this is what most masters have done, especially in Asia. He also claimed that there are no health risks associated with this kind of practice. Nerves may be pressed and circulation can go down, things might go numb and there can be a lot of mental discomfort. However, none of this is harmful or damaging to the normal human body.

If the practitioner lacks flexibility or has a physical condition that causes discomfort in sitting down, then a chair can be utilized. Many of us sit in chairs all day at work and it is harmless as long as the posture is correct.
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Daniel M. Ingram, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: medical risks of meditation

Posts: 3214 Join Date: 4/20/09 Recent Posts
I personally have never sat more than about 4 hours, with most sits being less than 90 minutes, and I found that I made good progress anyway. I think the diligence of investigation and the openness to experience and the interest in what is going on and how a sense of a self is created in this transient world is more important than very long sits.
Gregory Clement, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: medical risks of meditation

Posts: 5 Join Date: 8/17/13 Recent Posts
Thanks everyone for your thoughts on this.
Derek Cameron, modified 8 Years ago.

RE: medical risks of meditation

Posts: 326 Join Date: 7/21/10 Recent Posts
I read somewhere that, due to the risk of DVT, the absolute hard maximum length for a single sit should be 4 hours. Sorry but I don't remember where I read that.

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