Healthy tries… mindfulness at Tower Bridge
Mornings can be stressful – and practicing mindfulness first thing is an increasingly popular way to counteract this feeling. Doing so at the heady heights of 138 feet, however, is a new thing entirely.
When Dr Tamara Russell, a clinical psychologist specialising in mindful movement, was enlisted to run mindfulness classes at Tower Bridge’s famous glass walkway, she immediately saw the potential of the location to complement her teaching.
The hour-long morning classes overlook the bustling traffic, commuters and cyclists below on the bridge, alongside the River Thames. ‘With the views over London, participants will learn that we can be in an “observer” position, with a different perspective on our minds – a key part of mindfulness training,’ she explains.
During the class, Tamara encouraged us to focus on the gentle movements of our body (a different focus to many breathing-focussed mindfulness classes). The surroundings of an imposing Tower Bridge, with the morning commute in full swing below us and the sun rising in front, made this experience truly unique.
Yet another effective part of the training was a visualisation technique where we were instructed to drop our specific ‘worries’ on to a vehicle below: a pending deadline was dropped on to an Ocado truck, while an unpaid gas bill was whizzed away upon someone’s blue Fiat – and, for the time being, they were banished. Now that’s therapeutic.
The session was a rare opportunity to start the day in a state of calmness and focus, and help us start as we mean to go on – all the while enjoying one of the Capital’s most spectacular views. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime kind of meditation experience that easily justifies getting out of bed that extra hour earlier.
For more information or to book one of Dr Russell’s Tower Bridge sessions, click here.
What does practising mindfulness mean to you? Tweet us @healthymag – we’d love to hear from you!