In colder weather a leisurely walk may be the last thing on your mind. Still, taking that time for yourself to flex your meditation muscles is a great idea and can be done anywhere. The focus here is on mindful awareness, not exercise or intense concentration.
Below is a simple Walking Meditation practice for the New Year that can help you integrate the experiences and insights of your yoga practice beyond the Yoga mat.
MINDFULNESS takes patience and commitment. Add power to your walking and feel peace growing in each step along the way. This simple walking meditation to support ongoing presence, stress reduction and heightened awareness. It can be done indoors or out. Move in a safe place where you won’t encounter obstacles, eyes open(of course) and remain alert even as you awaken to the deeper experience.
A mindful walk. Find a quiet place where you can walk back and forth over about 25-30 feet with no obstructions. In each of the three parts of this exercise, simply note the sensations in your feet, arms and legs as you lift and move each in turn. Whenever your mind wanders, bring it back to those sensations. Don’t strain your neck by looking at your feet; keep a relaxed gaze at a point in front of you. Take 20 minutes for the entire exercise.
***First Walk: Keep normal pace, noting mentally “left” as you move your left foot forward and “right” as you move your right foot forward. Stay tuned to the sensations that go along with those movements.
***Second Walk: Go a bit slower this time, and divide each step in your mind into “lifting” (leg goes up and forward) and “placing” (leg comes down). Finish one step completely before lifting the other foot.
***Third Walk: A much slower pace — be aware of a three-part motion to each step: “lifting”, “moving”, then “placing”, work at a very slow pace. Keep a relaxed breath even as the movement slows and awareness deepens.
Over time more and more of the nuance of walking and balance will be revealed. Simply remain with a non-judgmental(choice-less) awareness. This can be a great compliment to a sitting meditation practice. For some it is an easier way to start mediation as sitting still can be a challenge for many as they begin their mediation journey.
This is for information and education purposes only. Please read the disclaimer here for more information.