Taken from Hatha Yoga, Qigong, and Mindfulness Practices
Gathered by Vivian Morgan, LCPC
After each Mindful Practice ask the students:
– How does your body feel now?
– What feels different?
– Do you feel more relaxed?
– What did you notice about your thoughts?
1. Place your hands behind your head with your elbows to the side, and breathe in 34 times. As you breathe in allow your elbows to move out to the side, and observe your shoulders rise with your in-breath.
2. Mountain pose: standing with your feet hips width apart, shoulders squared, arms to the side. Head loosely in the middle of your shoulders. Now, rock back and forth on the bottoms of your feet. Feel the gravity of the Earth as you rock back and forth.
3. Squaring the shoulders, roll them forward slowly with each inhale. Repeat 5 times. Then reverse and roll them back 5 times. Gently and slowly move your right ear to your right shoulder, repeat with your left ear. Gently and slowly move your chin towards your chest, releasing the tension in your neck.
4. Using the palms of your hands, or your knuckles, rub your hands along your thighs and give them a massage.
5. Quietly go to the window and look outside. Find something that draws your attention to it and observe it for one minute. Return to your seat and share with the class.
6. Breathing exercise: In your chair, softly gaze at a spot in front of you, and squaring the shoulders, with your feet on the ground and your back in the chair, take a slow breath in counting to 4 and a slow breath out counting to 6. Repeat 4 times. Notice the breath as it fills your belly and chest.
7. Head Massage: Using your first two fingers on each hand, gently massage your temple. Take these same two fingers and massage your jaw (where your jaw meets)
8. Head Massage 2: Using your hands, spread your fingers apart, and run them up and down the sides of your scalp. Do this 4 5
times. Then repeat on the back of the head.
9. Closing the eyes, and placing the tip of an index finger onto the forehead. Notice the ripple of sensations that travel across the forehead.
10. Closing the eyes and listening for sounds in and around the classroom for one minute. Have the students share what they heard.
11. Closing the eyes, and holding your arms out to the side, move your hands slowly towards each other until you almost touch the other hand, but don’t. Open your eyes and see how close your hands are.
12. Standing with your knees slightly bent, imagining you are holding a ball in the palms of your hands and slowly roll your hands around the ball. Focus on your hands and on the space between your hands.
13. Gently stare at an object in front of you. Notice your peripheral vision. Imagine that you can see around to the back of your head, and the room around you.
14. Close your eyes and listen to all the sounds in the room. Just listen quietly while breathing. Share what you heard with the class.
15. Breathing Exercise 1: Softening the eyes and gazing in front of you, or closing your eyes and squaring the shoulders, begin to breathe filling your belly. Notice the air enter the body through the nose. Notice how cool the air is when it enters and how warm it is when it leaves.
16. Breathing Exercise 2: Softening the eyes and closing they eyes, begin to notice your breath, as it enters and leaves the body. Now notice the space between the breaths, the pause between your breaths.
17. Closing your eyes, begin to follow the breath. Imagine your mind is like the sky, soft and blue. Imagine your thoughts as clouds, entering the sky, and drifting by. Each time you recognize a thought, you simply return to the breath. Some thoughts are darker and larger, some are small and soft, but notice that you can always return to the breath. By and by your sky becomes clearer and there is more sky between
thoughts. Allow students about 2 minutes for this exercise.
18. Closing the eyes and noticing the breath, noticing the chest rise and fall, notice the air on your skin, notice the firmness of the chair, notice the desk in front of you. Just being aware of the present moment.
19. Standing beside your desk, with your knees bent, allow your arms to rise up at your sides with the elbows bent. Closing the eyes, imagine you are filled with helium. You have no bones, no organs inside of you, just helium. You are a helium balloon and you are just drifting.
20. Standing beside your chair, begin to shake your right hand until it is very loose, then shake your arm and shoulder until the whole arm is loose. Compare to the left arm. Now shake the left hand and arm and up to the shoulder until it is loose too. Now shake the whole upper body until it is relaxed and loose.
21. Waterfall: Standing next to your chair in mountain pose, raise your arms wide and above your body. Begin to wiggle your fingers and on the next inhale hold your breath for a few seconds and then release the breath and slowly and gently relax the body, moving the hands down in front of you like a waterfall flowing down the mountain.