Mindfulness is essential to enhance your quality of life. Meditation in any form is proving to be an effective method of increasing overall well-being. Walking meditation is a method of injecting pleasure, compassion, gratitude, and peace into every step you take while enjoying the wonder around you.
We don’t need any special equipment, place, or assistance in any form to meditate. Mindfulness can be practiced while at work, doing the chores, or going for a walk.
What is Mindful Walking Meditation?
Walking meditation can be explained as moving meditation or meditation in motion. Because walking is such a natural part of our life, this method of mindfulness meditation is excellent for beginners.
Awareness. That’s the whole point of practicing walking meditation. It’s not just about going for a walk, it’s about sensing your body and sensations as you are walking. Firmly rooted in the present so as to not get distracted you plant seeds of gratitude, thankfulness, and peace with every step you take.
Benefits of Walking Meditation
Spending time walking through a comfortable surrounding is said to heal you from within, your mind, body, and soul. Clearing mental fog, shushing mental chatter, and calming anxiousness are all benefits of incorporating the simple practice of walking meditation into your self-care routine.
Meditation while walking is great for both experienced and beginners, gives us a friendly reminder of how much the earth sustains us, and can get your blood circulating after sitting in meditation.
Conscious walking and deep breathing may help you re-energize yourself by boosting your oxygen absorption. When we make an effort to practice meditation, we can zap stress and the increase calmness from within.
How to Practice Walking Meditation
If you are brand new to mindfulness practices like walking meditation, it is best to start with being mindful of one single moment when you start. Think of only the act of stepping when you walk: “ stepping, stepping” or “ right, left, right left.”
After a day or so, be mindful of additional movements, stepping, putting your foot down, and as you progress become aware of more movements: “ lifting your foot, moving the foot forward, putting the foot down, and pressing your foot to the ground.
Eventually, you will be coming completely aware and mindful of these stages of movement.
Choose a location
An ideal place to walk is one without obstacles. Find a place that is peaceful, flat, and ideally has little traffic. Be sure to not get in the way of other people should you choose a public place to practice. Practicing inside is another great option because there are fewer distractions.
Once you have found your ideal location, it’s time to anchor yourself. Breathe deeply for a moment and pay full attention to your body. Feel the stability of the ground underneath your feet. Become aware of all the different sensations taking place within your body. Be aware of your feelings and thoughts.
Once you are aware of the all the different sensations your body is manifesting as you walk, keep observation on your feelings and thoughts. Pay attention to the mental chatter that may arise in your mind, notice it, and go back to walking.
You don’t need to analyze, accept, reject, or remember these thoughts and feelings, just notice them. Walking with an open heart and taking each step with gratitude is the essence of walking meditation.
Posture and Speed
Walking at a snail’s pace has never had more meaning. The speed of walking meditation goes from slow, to very slow. Relax your legs as you walk and place your hands in a comfortable position: behind your back, dangling at your side, or around your diaphragm.
Your movement should be natural, defined, and aligned. Keep your body poised. While this may be tricky at first, you will eventually get the hang of it.
Chanting positive phrases like “I am in very good condition”, “I am healthy”, or even “OM” may enhance your mindfulness experience. Walking meditation can help you become familiar with how alive, how fresh, how happy you are once you get back home.
Receiving pleasure from the pleasures of walking can give your body and mind a natural boost sure to leave you refreshed, energized, and ready to take on the world!
What is your experience with walking meditation? We want to hear from you!
Written by: Heather Burton