The Purpose of Sun Salutations

Everyone who has practiced yoga has done some form of a a Sun Salutation or Surya Namaskar A. This flowing sequence consists of 11 poses that we flow through linking breath with movement. But, did you ever wonder why we see the Sun Salutation in our practices? Today, we are sharing the purpose of the Sun Salutations in your asana practice.

Here are the postures you will typically see with a Sun Salutation. Surya Namaskar A is a salute to the sun and is typically practiced at the start of your day or beginning of your asana practice.

Peace Love And Yoga, a hot studio in Carlsbad, California explains the purpose of Sun Salutations; graphic of all of the sun salutations.

Sun Salutation Poses

  • Tadasana
  • Urdvha Tadasana
  • Uttanasana
  • Ardha Uttanasana
  • Chatarunga Dundasana
  • Urdhva Muhka Svasana
  • Adho musk Svasana
  • Ardha Uttanasana
  • Uttanasana
  • Urdvha Tadasana
  • Tadasana

Build An Internal Heat


When we practice our Surya Namaskar with an ujjayi breath we are building an internal heat. Basically, we are warming up the body and preparing ourselves for our practice. This flow of breath with movement, helps to prepare the muscles for deeper and more engaged postures.

Prepare Your Body


Your Sun Salutations can also be done alone with the start of your day. A Surya Namaskar sequence is a great way to rise and get your body moving. When starting your day with your Sun Salutations, you may want to modify the first few rounds as you wake the body up. This is a great way to warm the body as it is a well rounded sequence including most movements in the body.

Clear Energy Pathways


Because Sun Salutations moves the body in all directions, it helps to clear the energy pathways. It is a balancing sequence and each movement touches at least one of the chakras. It helps to invigorate the body while creating space.

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