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4 of 9

The sun salutation in Yoga requires you to arch and bend and stretch in ways that may be difficult if you’re a beginning Yoga student. If you need a more user-friendly version of the sun salutation, try the 9-step rejuvenation sequence direct from California, using the focus breathing technique. This sequence doesn’t require you to kneel or step from a fully extended pose.

Here are the nine steps for the rejuvenation pose:

  1. Stand with your feet at hip width and arms at your sides (see Figure a).

  2. As you inhale, slowly raise your arms out from the sides and up overhead in the standing arm raise (see Figure b) and then pause.

  3. As you exhale, bend forward from the waist and bring your head toward your knees and your hands forward and down toward the floor in the standing forward bend (see Figure c).

    Keep your arms and legs soft. Then pause.

    [Credit: Photographs by Adam Latham]
    Credit: Photographs by Adam Latham
  4. Bend your knees quite a bit and as you inhale, sweep your arms out from the sides, but only come halfway up with your arms in a T (half forward bend), as shown in Figure d.

    Then pause briefly.

  5. As you exhale, fold all the way down again and hang your arms in the standing forward bend (see Figure e).

  6. As you inhale, sweep your arms from the sides like wings and bring your torso all the way up again, standing with your arms overhead in the standing arm raise (see Figure f).

  7. As you exhale, bend your knees and squat halfway to the floor.

    Soften your arms but keep them overhead; look straight ahead (see Figure g).

  8. As you inhale, bring your torso all the way up again, standing with your arms overhead in the standing arm raise (see Figure h).

  9. As you exhale, bring your arms back to your sides as in Step 1 (see Figure i).

Repeat the entire sequence six to eight times slowly.

To make it harder on the last round, stay for six to eight breaths in the half forward bend (Step 4), the standing forward bend (Step 5), and the half squat or half chair (Step 7).

To make it much harder, do the entire sequence standing on your toes.


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