What is Surya Namaskar?

Sun salutation, called Surya (sun) Namaskar (act of respect and devotion) in Sanskrit, was originally a prayer of thanksgiving to the sun, as well as to the spiritual light present inside of us. No one knows exactly when the first Sun salutation appeared or what it looked like. However, many yogis claim that they go back thousands of years, when the ancient Indians chanted mantras while bowing and rising, arms raised to heaven, in an act of ritual prostration.

Sun Salutation is now taught in many yoga classes. It is also a privileged practice of yogis who often include it in their daily ritual.

Surya Namaskar consists of a series of postures performed in a fluid manner. This sequence can be used as a warm-up or as a main element of a yoga session.
Each posture alternates between back flexion, forward flexion, round back and arched back. In this way, blood circulates throughout the body.
Sun Salutation is a very complete basic exercise that involves almost all parts of the body. In addition, it is a quick and accessible exercise for beginners and experienced yogis alike because it is possible to vary and choose positions according to their level of difficulty.

How to practice Surya Namaskar?

Salutation to the Sun is best done in the morning, facing the sun, in order for the body to receive Surya’s energy. 🌄
For beginners, it is advisable to work on the postures individually before doing a sequence.
The usual series consists of 12 movements based on 8 different positions, the last 4 being the same as the first 4, but performed in the reverse order. There are many variations.

Each movement is to be performed slowly, with the consciousness turned inward and with a deep breath. 🙏
As in any yoga posture, it is essential not to force yourself and to stop if you feel pain.

The Sun Salutation will only take you 10 to 20 minutes, depending on the integrated postures, and will give you exceptional physical and mental benefits!

You will find below the positions of the Sun Salutation with the associated breaths:

The Chakras and the Sun Salutation

Deepen the Practice with the Mantra Surya Namaskar

Once the physical sequences and breathing are mastered, the practice of the Surya Namaskar mantra is accompanied by a meditative aspect.

We suggest 2 versions of the sung Mantra to accompany you. It’s up to you to choose the rhythm that suits you best…



The benefits of Sun Salutation

The Sun Salutation gently awakens the body and has many benefits. ☀

General benefits

  • Strengthens the immune system
  • Helps to fight insomnia
  • Improves memory
  • Soothes anxiety
  • Energizes the mind
  • Develops concentration, coordination, balance, strength and rooting

Benefits for the body

  • Stretches, tones and invigorates the entire body
  • Softens and strengthens all muscles
  • Eliminates toxins
  • Prevents hair loss and reduces the tendency to grey hair
  • Burn calories and improve metabolism
  • Reduces the abnormal prominence of the Adam’s apple

Benefits for internal organs and glands

  • Tones the digestive system
  • Stimulates the vital organs
  • Increases the blood flow into the body
  • Improves controlled breathing
  • Stimulates and normalizes the activity of the endocrine glands (especially the thyroid glands)
  • Regulates the activity of the genitalia

 Benefits on Chakra activation

The different asanas (postures) are used to activate/balance the chakraschakras.


By Magali M. and Léa C.

All Yogadvisor articles:

The Kirtans or the magic of Sanskrit songs
Slow life or the art of slowing down the pace
How does yoga help to manage emotions?
Why do you wake up every night at the same time
How the Chakras can influence our overall well-being
Is your accommodation Feng Shui?


Leave a Reply