Sun Salutation is a sequence of poses that each flow into one another, originally called “Surya Namaskara” in sanskrit.
Traditionally, sun salutations begin the Ashtanga Yoga practice, and are often incorporated into other class styles as well. It is a key part of any flow style class, or can be practiced on its own.
In our videos at The House of Yoga, you can watch the sun salutation sequence and familiarise yourself with the breath and movement. This is often very helpful and important before jumping straight into an Ashtanga or Vinyasa class. There are different variations of sun salutations (often know as sun salutation a, b, or c). And each variations is at a different level of difficulty.
The benefits of sun salutation are many. A few of the highlights are that it improves the circulation of the blood throughout the body, increases the heart rate building fitness, and builds strength in various parts of the body. It aids the digestive system by the alternate stretching and compression of the abdominal organs, and is a good sequence to create warmth at the start or during your practice.
The breath is a very important part of this sequence, and the movement from one pose to the next is always done in conjunction with either an inhale or an exhale.
The sun is the giver of all life. Without the sun, life cannot exist. Thus, when we do this sequence of postures, we are symbolically acknowledging the sun’s presence as the giver of life and vitality.