Sun Salutation – Surya Namaskara A

Sun Salutation / Surya Namaskara from Marcia Sharp Yoga on Vimeo.

Director – Jack Burnford.

The Sun Salutation Sequence, also known as Salute to the Sun.  Surya Namaskara is a flowing series of 12 poses, which helps improve strength and flexibility of the muscles and spinal column. This flowing sequence also warms up the entire body and tones the abdominal muscles.

One round of Sun Salutation consists of two sequences, the first leading with the right foot in positions 4 and 9, the second leading with the left.  Keep your hands in one place from positions 3 to 10 and try to co-ordinate your movements with your breathing.  Start by practicing four rounds and gradually build up to twelve rounds.

1.  Stand erect with feet together and hands in the prayer position in front of your chest.  Make sure your weight is evenly distributed.  Exhale.

2.  Inhaling, stretch your arms up and arch back from the waist, pushing the hips out, legs straight.  Relax your neck.

3. Exhaling, fold forward, and press your palms down, fingertips in line with toes – bend your knees if necessary.

4.  Inhaling, bring the left (or right) leg back and place the knee on the floor. Arch back and look up, lifting your chin.

5.  Retaining the breath, bring the other leg back and support your weight on hands and toes.

6.  Exhaling, lower your knees, then your chest and then your forehead, keeping your hips up and your toes curled under.

7.  Inhaling, lower your hips, point your toes and bend back. Keep legs together and shoulders down. Look up and back.

8.  Exhaling, curl your toes under, and raise your hips and pivot into an inverted “V” shape. Try to push your heels and head down and keep your shoulders back.

9.  Inhaling, step forward and place the left (or right) foot between your hands. Rest the other knee on the floor and look up, as in position 4.

10.  Exhaling, bring the other leg forward and bend down from the waist, keeping your palms as in position 3.

11.  Inhaling, stretch your arms forward, then up and back over your head and bend back slowly from the waist, as in position 1.

12.  Exhaling, gently come back to an upright position and bring your arms down by your sides.

OOPS!  In the video I say “step your right foot back” then I actually step my LEFT foot back, I did the same on the other side, umm yep.  I temporarily suffered instructor ‘mirror-image-itis’!

Listen to my VOICE instruction and all will be fine – now get up and yoga, Namaste.