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Meditate on this: a walking meditation

I absolutely struggle to meditate. I find my mind flitting from one thought to another and some breathwork makes me feel panicked and anxious. Especially that one where you breath through one nostril - eek! I know I'm not the only one, so in this series of posts I'll be trying out different types of meditation (because there's a whole host of ways to do it) to see whether there is something that suits me. And perhaps, on my way, I'll find something that is right for you too!

There's a good reason for doing this. Studies show that meditating can help to:

  • reduce anxiety, depression and stress levels,

  • improve attention and problem solving,

  • bring lots of health benefits,

  • and so much more...

So I'm invested! This time I'm trying a walking meditation. The fabulous thing about this kind of meditation is that you can do it just about anywhere. You don't need lots of space, you don't need to be somewhere super quiet or remote, and you don't need lots of time. (The only caveat is to find somewhere safe - so try not to choose a route where you're likely to cross a busy road). And what I love about it is that I don't have to try to control my breath in any way.

To get started, choose where you'll walk and for how long - perhaps in a park or garden, on your way home from the shops, or even round your living room. I tried it barefoot and I loved it - but I'm not sure I'll feel the same way as the weather gets colder.

Now decide which sense you'll focus on as you walk. Will you notice the sounds around you? Will you focus on a particular colour? Perhaps it'll be the feeling of the breeze on your skin or the ground beneath your feet?

Walk slowly, and as you walk, notice if your mind starts to drift towards other thoughts (it absolutely will by the way!) and when that happens, guide your thoughts back to the sense you chose to focus on.

As you come to the end of your walking meditation, take a moment to notice how you feel in your mind and your body. And do this kindly, try not to judge your sensations.

Try this 5-minute guided walking meditation and see what you think.

This series of blog posts has been inspired by a week I recently spent at the Zolder Studio, learning all about yin yoga. It was amazing and introduced me to new ways to practise yoga and meditate.

We all deserve to live a great life, but what great looks like changes over time and sometimes we find ourselves stuck living in a way that isn’t right for us anymore. I support women to live a happier life: through prioritising their wellbeing and doing more of what they love.

I offer yoga and coaching together, and separately. What would be a good fit for you?

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