You don’t need to be an ardent yogi to do sun salutations – Practiced regularly they bring a wealth of health and fitness benefits and raise energy levels making you FEEL GOOD. Many yoga postures mirror the natural world (Cat, Tree, Mountain, Eagle) and a sun salutation is no different. This is the theme:
- Imagine a miniature sun radiating from your solar plexus as you journey around the mat – lifting and lowering as you go like the perpetual rising and setting sun (the movement)
- Embrace the immense relevance of the sun with its life giving power to sustain our natural world, acknowledge its powerful presence since the start of time (the salute)
As a workout this sequence works the body in a balanced way – the spine is mobilized – our major muscles are lengthened – neck and shoulder tension is relieved – all while building strength using our own body weight. Add to this proper breathing as you move through the sequence and you optimise the impact on a chemical level and boost the function of our internal systems (cardiovascular / endocrine / respiratory / digestive/ nervous systems etc). And add concentration with aloha intention and the effects are enhanced beyond the cells and into the engine of thoughts, emotions and feelings – the mind. Which brings the mind back to primate basics and over time cultivates awareness and appreciation which makes for a brighter happier YOU!
In short, moving with your breath through this sequence of postures while breathing intelligently is an all round winner! It makes me feel balanced and makes me rise and shine. There are a few variations – pick one or a combination. Try and do at least 7 a day – breathe well and use your imagination!
Each salutation starts standing straight – at the top of each diagram.
eg Classic Salutation – Start standing – Inhale arms up – Exhale fold – Inhale step right foot back and lunge – Exhale to plank……yup you got this!