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Body scan exercise

How to do a 'body scan'

This exercise can help you to become more aware of the physical sensations in your body. This can help you to feel more relaxed and in-tune with your needs.


Pay attention to sensations

During the body scan exercise you will pay close attention to physical sensations throughout your body. The goal isn't to change or relax your body, but instead to notice and become more aware of it. Don't worry too much about how long you practice, but do move slowly.

Begin by paying attention to the sensations in your feet. Notice any sensations such as warmth, coolness, pressure, pain, or a breeze moving over your skin.

Slowly move up your body—to your calves, thighs, pelvis, stomach, chest, back, shoulders, arms, hands, fingers, neck, and finally your head. Spend some time on each of these body parts, just noticing the sensations.

After you travel up your body, begin to move back down, through each body part, until you reach your feet again. Remember: move slowly, and just pay attention.


This video from Headspace can talk you through a similar meditation exercise. You can visit the YouTube video to see a transcript.

Read more ways to practice mindfulness