Video transcription

Hi, I'm Tara Blackburn. I teach here at The Wilmington Yoga Center, and today we are going to be working on Surya Namaskar. Surya, in Sanskrit, means sun, and Namaskar means salutation, so I will be showing you the flow from posture into posture of a complete Sun Salutation. So, for these exercises today, all you'll need is a mat and some space. So, when we start, we want to start in Tadasana; usually, at the top of the mat, but just for sake for right now, I'm just going to show you from the front view. We want to stand option one with our hips apart, feet hip width apart. Option two you can bring your big toes and your heels together. You want to stand nice and tall, tucking the tailbone slightly, drawing up and in through the belly, shoulders are relaxed and arms are drawn open, palms open. You are standing nice and tall, like a mountain. This is Mountain Pose or Tadasana. On an inhale, we are going to reach our arms up overhead finding length through the body, palms together, gaze back behind the thumbs finding a frontal extension here. On an exhale, we'll fold forward coming all the way down to forward bend, Uttanasana. On an inhale, we'll lift our hearts halfway, draw the shoulders away from the ears and lengthen through the spine, Ardha Uttanasana. As we exhale, we'll bend the knees and step back into plank. In plank position our shoulders are directly over our wrists, we're pressing through the heels, our hips are lifted and our core is engaged. If you gaze at your fingers, you want to make sure they're all spread open like starfish, middle finger pointing forward. The elbows are nice and soft. You don't want to hyper extend through the elbows. We don't want to put any more tension in the joints. It's all muscular here. On your next inhale, you're going to shift your weight forward and lower through Chatarunga. In Chatarunga, the elbows are directly by the sides touching the rib cage. Your chest is open and your gaze is forward. On an inhale, we're going to roll up into Upward Facing Dog or Urdhva Mukha Svanasana. Shoulders are drawn down, chest is open, gaze is slightly up. Remember your neck is an extension of the spine. The feet and the hands are the only thing touching the floor. The thighs are engaged, glutes engaged. On an exhale, we're going to use our core and draw back into Downward Facing Dog, Adho Mukha Svanasana. Feet can be hip width apart. Your shoulders are directly in line with the elbows and the wrists. Fingertips are still spread wide. Your gaze is up at your belly or through the thighs. You're drawing up and in through the navel. Most importantly here is to find a nice flat spine so if you need to bend the knees and flatten here, you hold a nice flat back and then you begin to draw the heels towards the floor. We'll take three breaths in Downward Dog. At the end of the exhale, you're going to bend the knees and you're going to gaze at the hands and we're going to step either the left or the right foot forward coming into a lunge, following by the left foot. On an inhale, we're going to lift up halfway coming back into Ardha Uttanasana and exhale fold, forward bend, Uttanasana. On an inhale, we're going to sweep the arms out to the sides and rise all the way up, Hasta Uttanasana, hands together, gaze behind the thumbs, exhale. We'll bring our hands to our hearts, completing Surya Namaskar. And that is a complete demonstration of Surya Namaskar A.