Sun Salutation - Information
The Raja of Aundh, Maharashtra, India (1909-1947) popularized this sequence by making it mandatory to school curriculum and encouraged all to perform it daily. The sequence came from ancient origins and serves as an excellent tonic to the entire system.
Even if you have limited time in the day, three rounds of Surya Namaskara first thing in the morning may be just what the body needs to prepare for the day ahead.
There are twelve positions in this sequence including gentle back bends, forward bends and inversions. A gentle side stretch can very easily be added in to the flowing movement at the beginning or end.
Finish with palms at heart centre and a glowing smile, giving thanks to your body for such a beautiful start to the day.
Beginners Sequence Instructions
Stand at the front of your mat in Mountain Pose (Tadasana). Have the feet together or parallel and bring palms together to meet at the heart centre.
Stretch the arms out forwards and then up alongside the ears, stretching upwards with a gentle backwards bend from just below the shoulder blades.
Hinging forward from the hips with a flat back and arms alongside the ears whilst keeping the knees straight. Lengthen the spine, relax the head and the arms towards the floor.
Bend the knees and place the palms on the floor outside of the feet. Stretch the left leg as far back as possible, lower the left knee to the floor. Release the pelvis down, move the chest forward elongating the spine and look forward, relax the shoulders down.
Bring the right foot back to meet the left, raising the buttocks towards the ceiling to make an inverted V shape. Relax the crown of the head to the floor. Draw the hips away from the hands lengthening the spine and lower the heels down towards the floor.
Lower both knees to the floor and keeping the pelvis slightly raised, lower the chest and chin to the floor, hands should be beneath the shoulders.
Shift the body weight forward, lowering the pelvis. Elongate the spine, stretching up the head neck and chest with little or no weight on the palms.
Push into the hands to raise the buttocks up into the inverted triangle. Lengthen the spine and lower the heels.
Swing the left foot forward between the hands and lower the right knee to the floor. The left shin should be perpendicular to the floor. Release the pelvis down, move the chest forward elongating the spine and look forward.
Bring the right foot forward to meet the left, straighten the knees, lengthen the spine down and relax the head.
Stretching the arms alongside the ears, bending the knees if necessary. Raise up with a flat back, stretching upwards and backwards.
Stand tall bringing the palms back to the heart centre. Then lower the arms, feet apart and relax.
Take a moment here to feel the awakening energy flowing through the body before beginning a second round leading with the right leg.