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Simhasana (lion pose)



Simha - Lion

In Simhasana, the face of the practitioner resembles that of a lion, hence the name.

Taking the asana position


Initial Position - Sitting position


1. Bend the right leg and place the foot under the left buttock.
2. Bend the left leg and cross the left ankle over the right ankle, placing the left foot under the right buttock.
3. Rest the hands onto the knees with the fingers spread out. Lean the body to the front slightly, placing the body weight onto the hands. The hands should be kept straight.
4. Tilt the head slightly downwards, open the mouth and stick the tongue out, pointing the tip of the tongue down. Widen the eyes and tense all facial muscles. Breathe normally. The gaze should either be at the nosetip or eyebrow centre.


The asana position


In this asana, the entire weight of the upper body should be shifted onto the knees via the arms. All facial muscles should be stretched, with the tongue hanging as far out as possible.

Releasing the asana position


1. Relax the facial muscles and straighten out the neck.
2. Straighten out the body and place the hands on the ground, by the hips.
3. Straighten out the left leg.
4. Straighten out the right leg and come back into the sitting pose.


Anatomical focus




On the slight pressure in the eyes and stretch in the facial muscles.



1. Keep the back straight.
2. Keep the chest open.
3. You may shift the position of the legs slightly to make sure that you are firmly seated and in balance.



1. Bend the arms.



1. Facial, eye and tongue muscles are stretched, refreshing the blood supply to these muscles, improving their efficiency.
2. The folded legs redirects the flow of prana from the lower chakras to the higher chakras.

Therapeutic application


Precautions & contra-indications


1. For those with weak knee or ankle joints, this asana should be practiced with caution.
2. The asana should not be practiced for more than 3 minutes as it is neither beneficial nor advisable.



This asana should be practiced for at least 30 seconds to gain the benefits and after some time can be extended up to 3 minutes.

Variations & tips


If it is difficult to sit in the position described above, you can simply sit in vajrasana with the knees wide apart, and leaning your body weight onto the hands placed on the ground in front of you.

Preparatory poses



Follow-up poses


Ancient texts


Hathapradeepika describes this asana in 3 shlokas. The first chapter describes this asana from shloka No. 50 to 52 :

Gulphaou cha vrushansyadhah sivanyah parshvayoh kshipet l
Dakshine savyagulpham tu dakshagulpham tu savyake ll H P 1.50
Hastou tu janvoh sansthapya swangulih samprasarya cha l
Vyatvaktro nirikshet nasagram tu samahitah ll H P 1.51

Meaning -

The right heel is to be kept on the perineum and then the left heel is to be kept below the thigh. Both palms should be kept on the knees and the fingers should be widely spread. The mouth should be opened as wide as possible and the gaze fixed on the tip of the nose. This is known as Simhasan. This is considered by yogis to be an important asana. The third shloka describes the pre-position. Hathapradeepika advises that the gaze is to be fixed on the tip of the nose, however, the founder of Kaiwalyadham, Swami Kuvalyananda advises that it is important to fix the gaze in between the eyebrows.