Meditation Articles Series
Two simple ways to centre yourself before meditating
Before beginning meditation I often find it helpful to centre myself. Centring grounds the body and begins quietening the mind. It also initiates relaxation.
How do you centre yourself?
Centring can be done very simply. Here are two methods that you might like to try.
- Whether sitting cross-legged on a cushion on the floor or seated on a chair begin by taking two or three clearing breaths. With each breath breathe in deeply through your nose and slowly breathe out through your mouth.
- Then take your awareness to your pelvic area and very gently move your upper body forwards and backwards and then from side to side. Be slow and aware of each movement and how your body feels. At the same time keep your inhalation and exhalation in time with the movements.
You will naturally find where your centre of gravity is and that will help your posture during your meditation.
The standing centring practice originates from Eastern traditions of meditation and is also known as Moon Centring. When you are doing this be mindful of your hands or your breath. Keep the inhalation and the exhalation in time with the movements of your arms. The slow, deep breaths help to relax the diaphragm, improve breathing and posture. Do two or three rounds before your meditation practice.
- Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and have your knees slightly bent and your arms by your sides. Keep your gaze soft and look straight ahead.
- On the inward breath raise your arms to shoulder height.
- On the outward breath bring the palms of your hands together in the centre of your chest in the prayer position.
- Inhale and stretch your arms out in front of you.
- Exhale and stretch your arms above your head.
- As you breathe in bring your arms to shoulder height again.
- As you breathe out bring your arms to your sides.
Begin the centring again and continue for two or three more rounds or until you feel it is time to move into your meditation practice.