There is nothing more energising than starting your day by doing sun salutations. The sun salutation is classic sequence of poses in the traditional yoga practice. There are different variations and each teacher might show you a slightly adjusted one. But if you are looking to do the basic sun salutation, this involves a mix of poses benefiting the entire physical body and energising the mind. Ideally, you’d want to do your sun salutation in a more open space, with a big open window or outside on the grass, your body facing the sun. The benefits of doing sun salutations first thing in the morning are endless. It is a heating, energetic sequence which will fuel your body with trust in yourself and ambition towards your abilities. It helps release physical and mental tension and it provides a deep stretch to the legs, thighs, arms and overall in the body. Sun salutations are also great for bringing more flexibility to the spine and strengthen the arms.
HOW TO SALUTE THE SUN (SURYA NAMASKAR)
To begin with, there is a mantra specific for saluting the sun. This is “Om Surya Namaha”, and you can say this at the beginning of the sequence, every time you do it. It connects you with the power of the sun and brings gratefulness towards the wonderful light the sun brings into our life every day.
Stand at the edge of your mat with your feet parallel and close together, keeping your back straight and shoulder blades together. Take a deep breath in and extend your arms all the way up above your head. As you exhale bring your arms all the way down with your palms touching the floor. Inhale and release the right leg back and then the left leg, both into lunge and then exhale going down into chaturanga. Breath in and come up into upward dog and exhale, going into down dog. Breath in and bring your right leg forward in between your hands, doing the same with your left leg and then stay in that forward bend and exhale. On your next inhale, lift your arms all the way up and exhale, releasing the arms to either side of the body. Doing just two of these every morning energises the body, stretches almost every part of your physical self and it’s a great mood booster for the day ahead.
STEP BY STEP
1.Inhale and bring arms up above the head
2.Exhale and fold bringing your arms down to the ground (bend your knees slightly if your arms don't reach the floor)
3.Inhale and take right leg back into lunge and then do the same for left leg
4.Exhale down in chaturanga
5.Inhale into upward dog
6.Exhale into up down dog
7.Inhale bring right leg to the front in between the hands and then do the same with left leg
8. Stay in fold and exhale
9. Inhale and raise arms all the way up
10. Exhale and release hands down
Repeat sequence next round alternating by bringing left leg back first into lunge and right follows.
Breathing sequence based on the image in this post:
*1 inhale; 2 exhale; 3 inhale; 4 exhale; 5 inhale; 6 exhale; 7 inhale bring right leg forward, then left leg forward, exhale and fold; 8inhale and bring arms up; 9 exhale and release arms to the side of the body.