Posted by Kat Wiseman on June 10, 2019

Skylight Yoga: Sun Salutations

HEALTHY LIVING

Skylights and yoga have one big thing in common: the Sun.

And while there may not be an official "Skylight Yoga Sequence," it kind of seems like kismet to combine the two.

On the one hand, skylights open your home to the sky, allowing sunlight to flow through for most - if not all - of the day.

 

And on the other, one of the oldest and most classic yoga sequences, Surya Namaskar or "Salute to the Sun," is meant to be a gesture of gratitude to the Sun, in addition to being a great way to build strength and stamina by connecting fluid movement with the breath.

So, whether you're a seasoned yogi or just looking to dip your toes into the practice, Sun Salutations (as they're called today) are a terrific way to get up, get active, and get a little more out of that new skylight you just installed.

 

Skylight Yoga Flow: Sun Salutations

Sun Salutations A

  1. Begin in mountain pose.
  2. Inhale, lift your arms up over your head.
  3. Exhale, lower your arms down and bend at the hips for forward fold.
  4. Inhale, lift halfway up for a flat back forward fold.
  5. Exhale, lower down, place your hands on the mat and step back into plank pose.
  6. Lower all the way down into chaturanga.
  7. Inhale, lift the chest for upward-facing dog.
  8. Exhale, push back into downward-facing dog.
  9. Hold your downward-facing dog for five full breaths.
  10. Inhale, look forward, step up to the front of the mat.
  11. Exhale, lower into forward fold.
  12. Inhale, lift all the way back up, raising your arms overhead so your hands meet.
  13. Exhale, arms down to mountain pose.

Repeat x4 for a total of 5 rounds.

 

Sun Salutations B

  1. Begin in mountain pose.
  2. Inhale, lift your arms up over your head and bend at the knees for chair pose.
  3. Exhale, bend at the hips for forward fold.
  4. Inhale, lift halfway up for a flat back forward fold.
  5. Exhale, lower down, place your hands on the mat and step back into plank pose and lower all the way down into chaturanga.
  6. Inhale, lift the chest for upward-facing dog.
  7. Exhale, push back into downward-facing dog.
  8. Inhale, step your right foot between your hands and lift your arms up for Warrior I.
  9. Exhale, place your hands back on the mat and step back into plank pose and lower all the way down into chaturanga.
  10. Inhale, lift the chest for upward-facing dog.
  11. Exhale, push back into downward-facing dog.
  12. Inhale, step your left foot between your hands and lift your arms up for Warrior I.
  13. Exhale, place your hands back on the mat and step back into plank pose and lower all the way down into chaturanga.
  14. Inhale, lift the chest for upward-facing dog.
  15. Exhale, push back into downward-facing dog.
  16. Hold your downward-facing dog for five full breaths.
  17. Inhale, look forward, step up to the front of the mat.
  18. Exhale, lower into forward fold.
  19. Inhale, lift all the way back up for chair pose.
  20. Exhale back to mountain pose.

Repeat x2 for a total of 3 rounds.

 

Skylight Yoga Flow: Moon Salutations

Remember when we talked about how skylights can help you get a better night's sleep? Well, so can yoga!

While Sun Salutations honor the energy of the Sun, Moon Salutations honor the energy of the Moon. This restorative sequence cools and softens the body and is a comforting way to wind down and get your body ready for a restful night's sleep.

  1. Begin in mountain pose.
  2. Inhale, press your palms together in prayer position, thumbs on your sternum. Take several breaths here.
  3. Inhale, sweep arms out and up, interlacing your fingers overhead with your index fingers pointed to the skylight.
  4. Exhale, root down through your left hip and bend your upper body to the right for half moon pose.
  5. Inhale back to center.
  6. Exhale, root down through your right hip and bend your upper body to the left for half moon pose.
  7. Inhale back to center.
  8. Exhale, release your arms to your side.
  9. Inhale, step your feet wide.
  10. Exhale, bend your knees, extend your arms and bend them at the elbows with your fingertips pointed toward the ceiling for goddess squat.
  11. Inhale, straighten your legs and extend your arms for star pose.
  12. Exhale, point your right foot to the front of the mat and reach your right hand out and down for extended triangle pose.
  13. Inhale, lower your left hand and turn your torso in line with your right leg.
  14. Exhale, fold your torso over your right leg for pyramid pose.
  15. Inhale, bend your right knee.
  16. Exhale, lower your left knee to the floor.
  17. Inhale up for low crescent lunge.
  18. Exhale, place both hands on the mat on the inside of your right foot.
  19. Inhale, extend your left leg up and out to the left for low side lunge.
  20. Exhale, step your left foot forward, coming into a low squat with your upper arms inside your knees for garland pose.
  21. Inhale with your hands in prayer position and exhale fully.
  22. Inhale, place your hands on the mat on the inside of your left foot and extend your right leg out to the right for low side lunge.
  23. Exhale, rotate your right leg in and back, placing your right knee on the floor.
  24. Inhale up for low crescent lunge.
  25. Exhale, place your hands on the ground.
  26. Inhale, straighten both legs.
  27. Exhale, fold your torso over your left leg for pyramid pose.
  28. Inhale, extend your right hand straight up to the ceiling, opening your torso to the right for extended triangle pose.
  29. Exhale fully.
  30. Inhale, raise your torso and extend your arms out, keeping your feet wide for star pose.
  31. Exhale, bend your knees and arms for goddess squat.
  32. Inhale to straighten back up.
  33. Exhale, step to the front of the mat for mountain pose.
  34. Inhale, sweep arms out and up, interlacing your fingers overhead with your index fingers pointed to the skylight.
  35. Exhale, root down through your left hip and bend your upper body to the right for half moon pose.
  36. Inhale back to center.
  37. Exhale, root down through your right hip and bend your upper body to the left for half moon pose.
  38. Inhale back to center.
  39. Exhale, release your arms and bring your hands to heart center for mountain pose.
  40. Breathe here for a few moments.

Repeat as many times as you'd like before sleep.

 

Sun Salutations and Moon Salutations embrace different qualities, but they complement each other perfectly. If you're up for the challenge, try a round of each daily under your skylight and see just how wonderful the benefits of yoga and daylight can be.