So Hum Breath Meditation & Yoga Nidra Inspired Body Scan

Here is a fairly short practice that starts with a silent So Hum breath meditation and seamlessly moves into a different kind of body scan. What I love about this is how it’s perfect before sleep, upon waking, or anytime during the day. The body scan is my riff on a classical yoga nidra body awareness practice. Here, the focus is on bilateral stimulation and drawing attention to essential obvious body parts. (For more on the benefits of bilateral brain stimulation read this:

Do the so hum silent mantra with your tongue tip pressed lightly to the roof of the mouth where the soft and hard palate meet. Say SO silently on the inhales and HUM silently on the exhales. (For more on the meaning of the mantra and another way to practice it, check out:

Next, breathe slowly and deeply while you gently draw your attention to the following parts of the body, one breath for each body part. If it’s easier, you can record yourself naming the body parts, but after one or two rounds you will know them.

Left pinky toe, right pinky toe

Left ball of the foot, right ball of the foot

Left back of the ankle, right back of the ankle

Left back of the knee, right back of the knee

Left inside the thigh, right inside of the thigh

Left lowest rib, right lowest rib 

Left arm pit, right arm pit 

Left hand space between the index and middle finger, right hand space between the index and middle finger

Left inside of the elbow, right inside of the elbow

Left shoulder blade, right shoulder blade

Back of the neck

Left ear lobe, right ear lobe

Left inside of the cheek, right inside of the cheek

Left lower eyelid, right lower eyelid

Third eye point


Focusing on less obvious parts of the body calms the mind. It’s an unexpected body scan that allows your prefrontal cortex to rest with an unthreatening, easy activity.

Doing this after the silent So Hum breath meditation is a short but powerfully grounding practice.


Copyright Nicole Urdang

Nicole Urdang

Nicole S. Urdang, M.S., NCC, DHM is a Holistic Psychotherapist in Buffalo, NY. She holds a New York state license in mental health counseling and a doctorate in homeopathic medicine from the British Institute of Homeopathy.