🌞🍾 SUN SALUTATION A: VINYASA TIME! 🍾🌞

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SURYA NAMASKAR A

HEY THERE, MY LOVELY YOGIS!

I'VE MISSED YOU GUYS A TON (WELL, SINCE LAST WEEK!) BUT STILL, I'M ALWAYS THINKING OF WHAT I WANT TO TALK ABOUT, REALLY BRAINSTORMING OVER WHAT I BELIEVE MY READERS WANT TO KNOW, WHAT COULD HELP THEM, OR CATAPULT SOMEONE TOWARDS A STEP IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION. I'VE BEEN GOING THROUGH A LOT MYSELF, BUT I'M GROWING AND WATCHING MYSELF MAKE NECESSARY CHANGES. I WAS ONCE TOLD: 

LIFE HAPPENS FOR YOU, NOT TO YOU.

THAT COULDN'T BE MORE TRUE. AND AS MY BLOG TURNS ONE YEAR OLD, I'M EXCITED FOR WHATS TO COME. JUST KNOW THAT MORE IS ON THE WAY! IF YOU WANT TO LEARN THE HOW TO AND BENEFITS OF A VINYASA, KEEP READING!

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A SIMPLE VINYASA

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SO WHAT IS A VINYASA? IT'S A CONTINUOUS SET OF POSES THAT ARE ESSENTIALLY THE TRANSITION FROM A CHATURANGA TO THE DOWNWARD FACING DOG. VINYASAS ARE PART OF SUN SALUTATION A. THE SANSKRIT NAME IS SURYA NAMASKAR A. DID YOU KNOW THAT THESE ANCIENT MOVEMENTS WERE PRACTICED AS A WAY TO GIVE THANKS TO THE SUN? TODAY, WE DO THEM IN BETWEEN VARIOUS YOGA POSES OR SEQUENCES DURING A YOGA FLOW. I LIKE TO INCORPORATE THEM WHEN I'M TEACHING MY CLASS AS A WAY TO KEEP THE BODY WARM AND TO INCREASE THE ENERGY LEVEL.

HOW TO

1. BEGIN BY TAKING A FORWARD FOLD (ABOVE).

2. AS YOUR HANDS STABILIZE YOU ON THE MAT, HOP OR STEP YOUR FEET INTO PLANK POSE. KEEP THE BACK ROUNDED, THE SPINE STRAIGHT (I'M STILL WORKING ON THE CURVETURE!) I SOMETIMES LIKE TO BRING ONE LEG UP TO CHALLENGE MYSELF, BUT IT IS CERTAINLY OKAY TO HAVE BOTH FEET ON THE GROUND. YOUR GAZE SHOULD BE CENTERED ON THE MAT. HIPS ARE PARALLEL TO THE GROUND.

3. TIME FOR THE CHATURANGA: KEEPING A STRAIGHT BACK, USE YOUR TRICEPS TO SLOWLY LOWER TO THE GROUND, SHOULDERS ARE A BIT MORE FORWARD THAN YOUR HANDS. YOUR ELBOWS SHOULD BE VERY CLOSE TO THE BODY. DON'T LET THE BACK SINK TO THE GROUND.

4. TO GET TO YOUR UPWARD DOG: INHALE, THEN USING YOUR TRICEP STRENGTH AGAIN LIFT YOUR CHEST UP AND STRAIGHTEN OUT THE ELBOWS, PUSH THROUGH THE HEELS, THE HIPS WILL LOWER DOWN. SHOULDERS AWAY FROM THE EARS. REMEMBER TO SUCK IN THE BELLY AND KEEP THE LEGS STRAIGHT.

5. YOU WANT ONE STREAM OF ENERGY GOING FROM YOUR FEET TO YOUR CHEST. BE SURE THAT YOUR HIPS AND KNEE CAPS ARE OFF THE MAT. ONLY YOUR HANDS AND TOES MAKE CONTACT TO THE MAT. 

6. LOOK UP TO THE SKY OPENING THE THROAT CHAKRA AND NECK. DO NOT LET YOUR SHOULDERS SINK IN, USE THE UPPER BODY STRENGTH TO KEEP YOUR CHEST LIFTED.

6. TO GET TO YOUR DOWNWARD DOG: EXHALE AS YOU USE YOUR ABDOMINAL STRENGTH TO LIFT THE HIPS AND TAILBONE OFF THE GROUND IN A CONTINUOUS MOTION. YOU'RE GRAZING THE MAT WITH YOUR TOES UNTIL YOU REACH THE TIPPY TOES, THEN PRESS YOUR HEELS INTO THE FLOOR, SUCKING IN THE BELLY.

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PHALAKASANA

MODIFICATIONS

  • YOU MAY LOWER YOUR KNEES TO THE GROUND WHILE IN PLANK POSE.

  • YOU CAN BEND YOUR KNEES IN YOUR DOWNDOG.

  • TO CHALLENGE YOURSELF, YOU CAN LIFT THE RIGHT LEG IN PLANK POSE AS YOU PRACTICE YOUR CHATURANGA.

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CHATURANGA DANDASANA

BENEFITS

  • CAN HELP YOU CREATE ENERGY AND HEAT 

  • IT'S A GREAT CHEST OPENER

  • ENGAGES THE LEGS AND TRICEPS

  • GOOD FOR DIGESTION AND DEPRESSION

  • THERAPY FOR FLAT FEET, BACK PAIN, AND HEADACHES

  • WORKS ON BALANCE AND UPPER BODY STRENGTH

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PRECAUTIONS

  • IF YOU HAVE SHOULDER OR WRIST INJURIES, DO NOT ATTEMPT. 

  • WORK ON THE UPPER BODY STRENGTH BEFORE DOING THE FULL CHATURANGA, BEING MINDFUL OF THE ROTATOR CUFFS.

  • IF YOU HAVE BACK INJURIES, IT'S BEST TO MODIFY OR AVOID ANY FURTHER STRAIN. JUST USE YOUR GOOD JUDGEMENT.

  • MY FRIENDS WITH HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE, ALSO TAKE CAUTION.

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URDHVA MUKHA SVANASANA

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ADHO MUKHA SVANASANA

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ALL PHOTOS ARE BY THE GREAT DANNY FRAGOSO.