Full Mindful Breath is the first practice in our Mindful Breathing Practice Series. We will use the skills we’ve learned from Belly Breathing and Glitter Globe Body Scan to try out a deeper breathing practice.
Begin by finding a comfy seat or standing position, depending on where you are and the space you have available. Make your spine even taller by reaching up through the crown of your head. Allow your eyes to gently close if that is comfortable, and bring one hand to your belly, one hand to your heart.
Begin to notice your breath. Is it big or small? Long or short? See if you can begin to change your breath into Belly Breathing. Fill up your belly on the in-breath, and let it become empty on the out-breath. Do this for three more rounds.
On the fourth round, begin to fill up your belly on the in-breath, and then see if you can fill your body up with breath even more, so that the in-breath fills up your heart space too! You might notice the hand on your heart lift up a little at the top of your in-breath. On the out breath, empty from your heart space, all the way down to your belly, and out of your nose! You might notice that when you got to the top of your breath, your belly pulled in a little bit. That is okay! Every body is different, so it is okay if your belly didn’t pull in a little bit.
Let’s practice one more time together. On the in breath, imagine that the air you take in is like a wave. It moves down your nose, into your belly to fill it up, then keeps going all the way up to your heart space. Your heart space is like the sea shore. Once it gets there, just like a wave, you can hold your breath for just a second, then let it roll out of your body, starting at your chest, moving through your belly and out of your nose.
Now try this five more times on your own! Notice how your hands may lift and lower when you take your in-breath, and out-breath.
When you finish the fifth time, close your eyes and notice how you feel.
[teacher bring them back after everyone has been finished for 30 seconds- 1 minute depending on how still they are]
How did that feel? What did you notice?
Teachers Tip: It might be helpful to show students a clip of an ocean wave before or after practicing to help them visualize the practice. Also remind students that if the breath is uncomfortable, they can stop at any time (ex. if a student has really bad allergies, is sick, or has asthma).
Students Tip: You can practice this breathing any time you’d like. It can help you hit the pause button if there’s a lot going on, and come back to a place of calm.