Sun Salutations ( or Surya Namaskars) are the foundation of a Vinyasa practice. In this vlog, Yoga Home teacher Ali Calvaruso will deconstruct this popular sequence to help you move through the poses safely and fluidly. Sun Salutations help to warm the body, engages the the major muscles groups of the body and increases respiration and circulation. They are also rich in symbolism:
“One of the means of honoring the sun is through the dynamic asana sequence Surya Namaskar (better known as Sun Salutation). The Sanskrit word namaskar stems from namas, which means “to bow to” or “to adore.” (The familiar phrase we use to close our yoga classes, namaste—te means “you”—also comes from this root.) Each Sun Salutation begins and ends with the joined-hands mudra (gesture) touched to the heart. This placement is no accident; only the heart can know the truth. The ancient yogis taught that each of us replicates the world at large, embodying “rivers, seas, mountains, fields…stars and planets…the sun and moon” (Shiva Samhita, II.1-3). The outer sun, they asserted, is in reality a token of our own “inner sun,” which corresponds to our subtle, or spiritual, heart. Here is the seat of consciousness and higher wisdom (jnana) and, in some traditions, the domicile of the embodied self (jivatman).” Yoga Journal excerpt, Here Comes the Sun, Richard Rosen
Sun salutations in and of themselves can be a complete practice. Let this video support your studio practice or empower you to practice at home.