SUN SALUTATION

Surya Namaskara, known as Sun Salutation is a beautiful way to energise and bring warmth to the body. Using the breath, flow through this sequence as many times as you desire.

 

Begin in Mountain Pose (Tadasana) by bringing your feet hip width apart, or big toes together heels slightly apart, whichever feels great in your body. Distribute your weight evenly through both feet, relax your shoulders away from your ears, find your centre and tune into your breath. Perhaps take a moment with hands in prayer to set an intention for yourself.
Inhale, bring your arms out to the side and up overhead (Urdhva Hastasana). Reach up through your chest, your arms and your fingertips, gaze towards your palms if its comfortable to do so. 
Exhale, take a slight bend into the knees, hollow out your belly and fold forward from your hips into a standing forward bend (Uttanasana). Your hands can come to the earth or the ankles or wherever they fall naturally. 
Inhale, lengthen your spine (Ardha Uttanasana), hands can stay planted or they can come to your shins. Your spine will be nice and long here, your weight is evenly distributed through your feet and you can gaze out to the front of your mat.
Exhale, Step back into a plank pose. Feel free to drop the knees here! Your shoulders are stacked above your wrists and you are pressing down evenly through all of the fingertips with your wrists flat on the floor. Press out of the back of your heels to engage the legs while you try to maintain a long line from heels to shoulders. Take an inhale here; (Often this transition is done in one breath as yogi’s jump back directly into Chaturanga, but it is nice to establish a strong core here and to take an extra second to align yourself).
Exhale to lower just off the earth (Chaturanga Dandasana), if your knees are down they can stay down. Have your elbows hugged in toward your ribs, stacked above wrists. Again aim for a long line in the body and press out of the heels.
Inhale and slide your chest through and up into upward-facing dog (urdhva mukha svanasana). You are now pressing through the tops of your feet with the thighs hovering slightly above the earth. You have straightened your arms and your shoulders are aligned above the wrists, collarbones are broad and your heart is open. 
Exhale roll over the toes and send the hips high and back into downward-facing dog (Adho Mukha Svanasana). Ground down through the hands here, take a bend into the knees if needed to maintain a long spine and align the feet to hip-width apart. It really doesn’t matter if your heels are lifted here. Stay for 5 breaths and on your last exhale bend your knees and gaze toward your hands.
Inhale, step, hop, jump or walk to the front of the mat, whichever speaks to you! Lift your torso to halfway once more, lengthening your spine (Ardha Uttanasana). Again hands can be planted or on the shins.
Exhale, just like before take a slight bend in the knees and fold forward (Uttanasana).
Inhale, sweep your arms out to the side as you rise up, bringing the hands back up over head (Urdhva Hastasana) gazing towards the palms.
Exhale, we’re back where we started in mountain pose (Tadasana). Bring your hands into prayer, thumbs gently pressing toward the sternum.
Repeat twice or more. 

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