Ritual Connects Us To The Absolute
By tradition, at dawn, the yogis practiced greeting the sun with a salutation. A yoga session is incomplete without it. An ideal exercise to get you moving, Surynamaskara welcomes the new day, preparing for the asanas, heating up the body, toning up the muscles, quickening and intensifying the respiration and cardiac rhythm. The sun salutation is the foundation of your practice, it establishes the connection of movement and breath, uniting body, mind, and spirit.
Not only is the sun salutation a preparation for the rest of your yoga practice, but it is a complete exercise within itself. Suryanamaskara tones up the digestive system by the alternate stretching and compression of the abdominal region. It massages the inner organs, stomach, liver, and spleen. It activates digestion and aids in reducing constipation. Synchronizing breath with movement, the lungs are thoroughly ventilated and the blood oxygenated, creating a detoxifying effect. The sun salutation steps up cardiac activity and blood flow throughout the system, which is ideal for the health of the body. By stretching and bending the spinal column, this sequence of movements tones up the nervous system. Toxins are easily eliminated through the skin, lungs, intestines, and kidneys. Immunity to disease is increased by strengthening its potential breeding ground.
Concentration and the maintenance of an uninterrupted rhythm throughout the succession of the sun salutations are key. Synchronize breath with movement and connect with the rhythm, your own internal rhythm.
Start by practicing three rounds.Gradually increase to five or six.
Begin in Samasthiti, equal standing.
1. Inhale, hands up, look up to the thumbs.
3. Inhale, head up, straighten spine, gaze at third eye.
4. Exhale, bend knees, jump back (or step back) to Chaturanga Dandasana.
5. Inhale, roll up to Urdhva Mukha Svanasana, upward dog, gaze to sky; back and up.
6. Exhale, lift hips back to Adho Mukha Svanasana, downward dog. Gaze toward navel. Hold for 5 breaths.
7. Inhale, jump (or step) feet up between hands, gaze between eyebrows.
8. Exhale, fold at waist to Uttanasana, gaze tip of nose.
9. Inhale, come all the way up looking between eyebrows with spine straight, hands up, gaze at thumbs.
10. Exhale, arms to sides, Samasthiti.