CREATING SPACE THROUGH MOVING MEDITATION
Updated: Aug 7, 2019
Welcome back- we hope you followed some tips on deep breathing, to create space and strengthen your lungs!
It may be the first time you have heard of 'moving meditation' but in this issue we hope you will learn some tips on how to practice. It's an amazing way to create space for your body and mind through physical exercise combined with mind meditation.
If meditation is new to you please don't tune out!
It would be a shame to rule out all meditation when research shows that it increases mind clarity, focus, eases anxiety and depression, boosts immune systems, increases emotional intelligence and grows more grey matter in the brain! It's no wonder so many CEO's now practice meditation to acquire those benefits and create an advantage in the business world.
There are so many different ideas around what meditation is but to take it out of a spiritual context for the purpose of physical and mental health, what is it like?
Mindfulness/ meditation and moving or active meditation as it is sometimes called, can be likened to being 'in the zone'. Most of us have felt it at some point- jogging, boxing, on the treadmill...where you are so focused on your actions at the present time that all other thoughts escape you.
Tai Chi or QiGong allows your mind to get into that same 'zone' but it is referred to as 'moving meditation' or being in a 'meditative' state.
Some think of the end goal of meditation as an 'empty', 'blank' or 'nothing' state of mind but those adjectives don't do justice to what is really happening in your mind. Meditation allows us to create stillness and space in the mind so we are able to be completely present in the moment, have greater control of our own thought patterns, let go or follow thoughts, be focused and able to remove the everyday chatter in our minds.
It is estimated we battle with 20,000 to 70,000 thoughts per day. Just as the desk, car, house or boat needs tidying from the clutter, so does the mind!
Now for the 'moving' part of the equation. To be in the 'zone' you can be doing exercise that is physically taxing on your body- pounding the pavement while running, shortening the breath with quick fire jabs... If you do a lot of high impact exercise, think about how that can compact space in your joints, muscles and organs. As good as it feels and is, finding an equilibrium in exercise is key to maintaining flexibility and mobility. The biggest difference with 'moving meditation' is how your energetic force or Qi is used to create that space throughout each part of the body to work in sync with the opening of your mind.
'Moving' in Tai Chi or QiGong gently untangles your body from stress or strain through deep breathing and sustainable but strong low impact movements. So just as your mind de-clutters so does your body. Iron out all the creases as you stretch out, get the circulation flowing to release tensions from the top of your head down to your toes, strengthen and improve organ with strong deep breaths and at the same time inject a huge dose of oxygen to the brain to clear away the clutter.
We hope you try it!
"I realized I had no control over my external environment. But the one place I did have a say over was my mind, through meditation." New York author of 'The Happiness Track' Emma Seppala on practicing meditation after 9/11.
In this clip Quintin practices a moving meditation that takes just under 5minutes to run through. The sequence can be practiced to exercise, meditate or both it is really up to how you feel and what you want to achieve from the exercise at the present moment. However with our busy lives, what better way to multi task then by exercising our body and minds simultaneously!
Here are a few tips before you start!
Find somewhere quiet to practice to quieten the mind, have less distractions and give your ears a well deserved rest.
Begin with some deep breathing to enter the right state of mind. It is the perfect stepping stone for moving meditation and sets the ground work for all Tai Chi and QiGong exercises.
There are 5 exercises within the sequence so if it's all new to you, break it down and practice each exercise separately first so its easy to grasp.
To be able to meditate your mind needs to be fully engaged in the present moment so our recommendation is that once you can follow some of the movements without looking at the clip then try as a moving meditation.
Try to decide on what you would like to achieve before each meditation- whether that is a physical or mental just being aware and to have a focus will keep you present in the moment.
Think of moving meditation as recovery time. It should feel like your body is being gently massaged. Tai Chi is a fantastic way for your body rejuvenate and restore with sustainable postures.
Always come back to the breath whenever you need to re-focus, if you feel distracted, scattered or need to let go of thoughts. Your breath will always bring you back to the present moment.
Happy meditating in motion!
Please email us if you would like to book in your 'moving meditation session;
Interesting articles on meditation;