Ok, so if you’ve been paying attention, you may have noticed that all the poses we’ve covered in Tutorial Tuesday are parts of a classic Sun Salutation, or Surya Namaskara. Sooooo, today I’m bringing you a Sun Salutation Tutorial to help you put all the pieces together. My New Years Resolution this year was to start each day with one single Sun Salutation each morning, and I’ll confess sometimes I have to improvise a little, but it’s a great way to kick off the day. Since we all learn in different ways, I’ve included a written breakdown as well as an audio tutorial
BEGIN in Tadasana taking a full breath just to find stability and length in the body.
INHALE to slowly sweep the arms up overhead to Urdvha Hastasana (Upward Salute), keeping the spine long and thumbs pulling back to encourage an external rotation in the shoulders.
EXHALE to bow forwards into Uttanasana (Forward Fold), keeping the heart open, spine long, and shoulders drawn down the back ribs. As you bow forwards press the thigh bones back to deepen in the crease in the hips.
INHALE to lift halfway into Ardha Uttanasana (Half Forward Fold) finding that deep crease in the hips, opening the heart, and working towards a 90 degree angle in the body.
EXHALE keep the length in the spine and bend the knees as much as you need to in order to get the palms flat on the floor and then slowly as you slowly one leg at a time, step the feet back to Phalakasana (Plank Pose)
INHALE to hold plank, keeping the hips in line with the rest of the body and pressing actively down through all 4 corners of the palms.
EXHALE and draw the elbows straight back as you lower down into Chaturanga Dandasana (4 limbed Staff). You can also come into Ashtanga Pranam (8 limbed bow) here if you prefer.
INHALE to place the tops of the feet on the ground, keeping the knees lifted and lifting into Urdvha Mukha Svanasana (Upward Facing Dog). If you chose Ashtanga Pranam instead of Chaturanga Dandasana, then lift up gently into Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose).
EXHALE to engage the core, press strongly into the palms and lift the hips back and up into Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward Facing Dog).
INHALE and stay in your down but bring the gaze forward and bend the knees.
EXHALE to walk the feet up towards the front of the mat back into your forward fold, with the knees bent.
INHALE and lift back into Ardha Uttanasana (Half Forward Fold).
EXHALE to deepen back into Uttanasana (Forward Fold)
INHALE as you bend the knees as much as you need to in order to protect the low back, deepen in the hip crease and lift up through your Uttanasana (Half Forward Fold) and sweep the arms out to the sides and then up over head into Urdvha Hastasana.
EXHALE to draw the hands together at the heart in Tadasana.
REPEAT to your heart’s content!