Yoga Poses for Beginners

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Yoga Poses for Beginners

The Sun Salutations are practiced in most yoga styles. One Sun Salutation – Surya Namaskara in Sanskrit – is a series of poses that are completed as a flowing series of movements creating heat in the body. A couple of Sun Salutations are a good warm up before a Yoga practice as well as for waking up the body in the morning when you don’t have time for a proper practice.

Every pose is ideally guided by your breath, but don’t worry if this doesn’t come easily when you first start. Just keep breathing and moving and you’ll soon learn to match your movements to your breaths.

In general, you should try to remember to inhale when you open your chest and create space, and then exhale as you dive deeper into a pose or when you want to relax.

If you’re looking for a yoga mat, I’ve shared my favorites in this recent article.

Update: You can now start your yoga practice on the comfort of your home. I’ve been using Grokker, an online platform with expert designed yoga videos, programs, and courses. There are also cooking and workout videos, so you will never run out of ideas or motivation. They have now 2 weeks free trial and a 20% discount. You can learn more and claim your free trial. Click here to check my Grokker Review to find how

Sun Salutation

Sun Salutation - 13 Steps Gif Animation

There are many variations of Sun Salutations and this easy one is my choice for you to start:

If you prefer you can download a PDF with all the images in high quality and full size here.

Click on the images if you looking for a bigger and better quality image.

1 – Start in Tadasna, mountain pose: Plant your feet firmly on the mat, big toes touching, heels slightly apart. Soften your knees, tilt your pelvis slightly forward so that your tailbone points downward to the mat. Lift your spine high, arms at your sides, palms facing forward. Relax your shoulders away from the ears and keep your core active.

starting sun salutation

Sun Salutation 1st Step Mountain Pose – Click for Full Size

Sun Salutation - Mountain pose side

 

2 – Inhale, raise your arms out sideways and above the head, bring the palms together and look up towards the sky – this is called Urdhva Hastasana, upward salute.

Sun Salutation 2 - Urdhva Hastasana

Urdhva Hastasana – Click For Full Size

 

3 – Exhale, fold forward at the hips, and bring your hands down to the mat beside your feet with your nose close to your knees into Uttanasana, forward bend. Feel free to bend your knees if necessary, as you want to try and keep your lower back as long as you can.

Sun Salutation 3 - Uttanasana

Uttanasana


4 –
On the next inhale, step your right leg back. Lengthen your spine and lift your sternum forward.

Sun Salutation 4 - step your right leg back

Step your right leg back


5 –
Exhale, step your left leg back into Adho Mukha Svanasana, downward facing dog. Your body should resemble an inverted V shape. Press your hands firmly into the mat, fingers are spread wide and the middle finger is pointing forward.

Draw your shoulders back and away from your ears, rotate your upper arms outwards. Your tailbone is the highest point and your back is long. Push your heels down but don’t worry if they don’t reach the floor – it’s okay to be on the balls of your feet. Press them firmly into the mat.

Sun Salutation 5 - Adho Mukha Svanasana, downward facing dog

Downward facing dog


6 –
 Inhale, roll forward into plank pose: Bring your shoulders over the wrists, elbows are soft. The crown of the head points forward, the neck is in line with the spine. Core is active, hips are square, legs are active and the heels are pushing backward.

Sun Salutation 6 - plank pose

Plank Pose


7 –
 On the next exhale come into Chaturanga Dandasana, low plank – lower your body down by bending your elbows backwards as though you were doing a push up. Keep your body straight and parallel to floor until you are almost down.

Sun Salutation 7 - Chaturanga Dandasana, low plank

Low Plank

8 – Without touching the floor, on the next inhale shift yourself forward and lift your upper body up into Urdhva Mukha Svanasana, upward facing dog by stretching and straightening your arms. And keep your core active to protect your lower back.

Sun Salutation 8 - Urdhva Mukha Svanasana, upward facing dog

Upward facing dog


9 –
With the next exhale, roll over your toes and move back into downward facing dog.

Sun Salutation 9 - downward facing dog

Downward facing dog


10 –
Inhale, raise your right leg high – keep your shoulders and hips square and make sure your shoulders are still away from the ears.

Sun Salutation 10 - raise your right leg high

Raise your right leg high


11
– Exhale, step your right foot in between your hands, lengthening your spine again.

Sun Salutation 11 - step your right foot in between your hands

Step your right foot in between your hands

12 – Inhale, step the left feet up to the right foot and exhale, folding forward in Uttanasana, Forward Bend. 

Sun Salutation 12 - Uttanasana, forward bend

Forward bend


13 –
Inhale take the arms over side, lift yourself up and exhale, bring your hands in front of your heart center.

Sun Salutation 13 - bring your hands in front of your heart center

Bring your hands in front of your heart center

Sun Salutation Finish 13 - Tadasna, mountain pose

Mountain pose

To complete one full Sun Salutation, repeat the same sequence of movements on the opposite side.

If you prefer you can download a PDF with all the images in high quality and full size here.

Yoga For Beginners Guide

Find more lessons on your Days to Yoga Bliss Course here.

days to yoga bliss a yoga for beginners guide

Yoga Poses for Beginners - Let's start slow and easily get into the flow of your body, soul and mind

About Author

Hi! I’m Katrin and I’m very happy to introduce you to the world of Yoga here at Days to Fitness I’ve been studying yoga for more than 10 years now. From the very beginning of my yoga practice I have found peace and strength and serenity and gratitude soon followed. The desire to be able to pass that on to others inspired me into doing a yoga teacher training course in 2013 in India at the Ashiyana Yoga Centre and aroused my interest in yoga and holistic life approaches...continue reading

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