Five-Minute Body Scan


Try this five-minute body scan to fit some mindful moments into your day.

March 21, 2024


Welcome to this five-minute mindful body scan.

Let’s review the four basic principles of mindfulness before we begin.

Mindfulness is:

  • Paying attention
  • On purpose, and with purpose
  • In the present moment
  • With a nonjudgemental attitude

With those principles in mind, I invite you to settle into a comfortable position.

You may be seated or lying down.

Now that you are in a comfortable and safe place, you may choose to close your eyes, and start noticing your breath.

Feel your lungs fill with fresh new air as you breathe in, and empty as you breathe out.

You don’t need to change your breathing, simply notice it for now.

In…and out.

Now, gently shift your awareness to your feet.

Notice any sensations you feel…is the surface they are resting on hard or soft, do they feel warm or cool, how do your socks and shoes feel (if you are wearing any)

Still breathing, in and out

Shift the awareness from your feet up to your calf muscles and lower leg.

How do these muscles feel, if there is any tension, simply notice it and let it go as you continue to breathe…in…and out

Slowly moving your awareness further up the leg, past your knees, to your thighs and hips

This part of your body does a lot of work, supporting you throughout the day.

Notice any stiffness or soreness that might rest here, and let it go, still breathing in and out, in and out.

Now, slowly shift this awareness up your lower back, following your spine, until you arrive at your shoulders and neck.

These areas where many of us tend to hold stress.

Feel your chest and abdomen expand as you breathe in, and contract as you push the air out.

Repeating this cycle, replenishing your body’s supply of oxygen.

Notice any tension that exists in these areas as you inhale, and gently let it go as you exhale.

There is nothing else to do right now besides sitting in this moment, paying attention to how your body is feeling, breathing in and out.

Next, we will shift attention to up your neck, through your jaw – another place many of us hold tension – up to the crown of your head.

Relax the muscles in your face.

How does your breath feel as it comes in through your nose? Is it warm or cool? Can you feel your nostrils open to allow more air in? How does your breath feel as it goes back out?

Continue to breathe.

As we come to the end of our practice today, try bringing this attention to your whole body, releasing any residual tension.

Know that you can always return to this peaceful practice whenever you like.

When you are ready, slowly open your eyes and return to your surroundings.

This mindfulness practice is provided by Michigan State University Extension. For more information about upcoming health programs and resources, you can visit