Surya Namaskar A | Sun salutation A

Surya Namaskara (सूर्यनमस्कार), or Sun Salutation, is a warm up routine based on a sequence of linked asanas. The name refers to the symbolism of Sun as the soul and the source of all life. Sūrya Namaskāra refers to a number styles of ”Sun Salutations” and a yogi may develop a personalized yoga warm up routine as surya-namaskar to precede his or her asana practice. 12 Surya Namaskaras are traditionally practised per cycle.

Surya Namaskar A is one of the sun salutations opening the Ashtanga Vinyasa Primary Series, the following one being Surya Namaskar B. Preceding the Primary Series 5 rounds of Surya Namaskar A are traditionally practised. The Surya Namaskar A is also the most common version of Surya Namaskar in the ritual 108 Sun Salutations, when a continuos flow of 108 Sun Salutations is performed.

 

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Surya Namaskar B | Sun salutation B

Surya Namaskara (सूर्यनमस्कार), or Sun Salutation, is a warm up routine based on a sequence of linked asanas. The name refers to the symbolism of Sun as the soul and the source of all life. Sūrya Namaskāra refers to a number styles of ”Sun Salutations” and a yogi may develop a personalized yoga warm up routine as surya-namaskar to precede his or her asana practice. 12 Surya Namaskaras are traditionally practised per cycle.

Surya Namaskar B follows the Surya Namaskar A as one of the sun salutations opening the Ashtanga Vinyasa Primary Series. Preceding the Primary Series 5 rounds of Surya Namaskar A and 5 rounds of Surya Namaskar B are traditionally practised.

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Surya Namaskar | Sivananda Tradition

Surya Namaskara (सूर्यनमस्कार), or Sun Salutation, is a warm up routine based on a sequence of linked asanas. The name refers to the symbolism of Sun as the soul and the source of all life. Sūrya Namaskāra refers to a number styles of ”Sun Salutations” and a yogi may develop a personalized yoga warm up routine as surya-namaskar to precede his or her asana practice. 12 Surya Namaskaras are traditionally practised per cycle.

According to the Sivananda tradition one round of Sun Salutation consists of two sequences, the first leading with the right foot in positons 5 and 10, the second leading with the left. Keep your hands in one place from positons 4 to 11 and co-ordinate your movements with your breathing.

Start by practicing four rounds and gradually build up to twelve rounds.

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  • Stand erect with feet together, make sure your weight is evenly distributed. Inhale.
  • Hands in the prayer position in front of your chest. Exhale.
  • Inhaling, stretch your arms up and arch back from the waist, pushing the hips out, legs straight. Relax your neck.
  • Exhaling, fold forward, and press your palms down, fingertips in line with toes – bend your knees if necessary.sn-hatha_2
  • Inhaling, bring the left (or right) leg back and place the knee on the floor. Arch back and look up, lifting your chin.
  • Retaining the breath, bring the other leg back and support your weight on hands and toes.
  • Exhaling, lower your knees, then your chest and then your forehead, keeping your hips up and your toes curled under.

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  • Inhaling, lower your hips, point your toes and bend back. Keep legs together and shoulders down. Look up and back.
  • Exhaling, curl your toes under, raise your hips and pivot into an inverted ”V”shape. Try to push your heels and head down and keep your shoulders back.
  • Inhaling, step forward and place the left (or right) foot between your hands. Rest the other knee on the floor and look up.

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  • Exhaling, bring the other leg forward and bend down from the waist, keeping your palms as in position 4.
  • Inhaling, streach your arms forward, then up and back over your head and bend back slowly from the waist, as in position 3.
  • Exhaling, gently come back to an upright position and bring your arms down by your sides.

Alignments in standing postures

Distance between hands and feet in Surya Namaskar
Chatturanga and through to Adho Mukha Savanasana
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Finding the alignment in Adho Mukha Savanasana using blocks
”Hands are shoulder width apart and feet are hip width apart”
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Distance when in standing postures Ashtanga Vinyasa
”Feet are one leg lenght apart”

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Alignment feet in Trikonasana and Parsvakonasana
”Heels are in line”

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Utkatasana | Chair Pose

The pose is one of the most basic asanas, but even though it’s not complex it has great benefits for strengthening the body as well as opening the shoulder area and chest. For beginners this pose can be challenging but it is of great use as a preparation for more advanced asanas. It also strenghtens the heart.

Alignments:

> Feet are together. Spread the toes, tuck the tail bone under (don’t arch), straight arms- press the palms together. You should see the toes in front of the knees if you look down.
> Drishti: Ceiling in front of hands

Key benefits:

> Strengthens the ankles, thighs, calves, and spine
> Stretches shoulders and chest
> Stimulates the abdominal organs, diaphragm, and heart
> Reduces flat feet

Duration/practise:

Preparing pose: Hold 30 sec – 1 min (beginners)
Modification: Hold 30 sec – 1 min (beginners)
Full position: 30 sec to 1 minute (intermed/advanced)

Cautions:

> Headache
> Insomnia
> Low blood pressure

Virabhadrasana A/B | Warrior A/B

Alignments:

> A: Square the hips turn the back foot in 45 degrees (front foot facing forward). Keep the back leg straight and press the inner seam of the front foot to the mat and the outer heel of the back foot. Without arching the back or raising the shoulders arms above the head, palms together. Keep the arms straight and the shoulders down.

> B: Front knee 90 degrees, press the inner seam of the front foot and the outer heel of the back foot, tuck the tail bone under, keep the shoulders down- lengthen between the hands and up.

Key benefits:

> Strengthens and stretches the thighs, calves, and ankles
> Strengthens the shoulders and arms, and the muscles of the back (A)
> Stretches the groins, chest and lungs, shoulders
> Stimulates abdominal organs
> Increases stamina
> Relieves backaches, especially through second trimester of pregnancy (B)
Therapeutic for carpal tunnel syndrome, flat feet, infertility, osteoporosis, and sciatica (B)

virabhadrasana-buildup

Duration/practise:

Hold 30 sec – 1 min (beginners)

Cautions:

> Diarrhea
> High blood pressure
> Heart problems (A)
> Neck problems: Don’t turn your head to look over the front hand; continue to look straight ahead with both sides of the neck lengthened evenly (B). Keep head in a neutral position and not look up at the hands (A).
> Shoulder problems: Keep arms parallel (or slightly wider than parallel) to each other. Look straight ahead with the sides of the neck lengthened evenly, or look down at the floor. (A)