The best way to start the day is to stretch out limbs stiff from slumber and greet the day with positive intentions. Cultivating a morning ritual that incorporates yoga will benefit your life in so many ways; from improved flexibility and reduced muscle tension, to feeling calmer and more emotionally prepared for each day. If yoga isn't something you've embraced before, then it can feel a little inaccessible, or like something that's just not you.
Well, prepare to release your inner yogi with the queen of the yoga sequences, Surya Namaskar.
Whose morning routine's are always a frantic race against the clock and a world record worthy effort to do things in the quickest time possible. Well, I hate to break it to you but this is not the best way to start each day. Depending on when you need to be out the house, make sure your alarm is set to give you enough time, sans the mad dash. I know it can be difficult with busy lives and who doesn't want that extra 15 minutes in bed for the sake of rushing a bit, but being strict with yourself to get up in good time is the only way you get to experience the potentially life changing effects of yoga in the morning.
Create a specially designated area for your practice. If room allows, then keep it solely for your practice, but if not still ensure that the place you choose is conducive of feeling calm and present in your body. If you are distracted by debris on the floor and trying to find room for your feet in downward facing dog, your attention isn't properly focused inwards on your breath and it's almost pointless. Try to make your practice space reflect the serenity and positive feelings you wish to cultivate on the mat.
Make the effort to learn the original sun salutation sequence, before you start customising it with your own variations. This is really important because the sun salutation sequence is a set of stretches that were created specifically by ancient yoga masters, and work because they knew what they were doing. Nowadays, the practice they mastered through spiritual inclination, has been verified through science and contains movements that are optimal for the human body.
Or, Surya Namaskar in Sanscrit, is a staple component to most yoga practices. It is also, of course, a sequence designed specifically for starting the day. If you are new to sun salutations, then take note from this video;
Make it up!
Once you know the sun salutation sequence and the basic principles for what makes it such an all encompassing set of stretches; targeting your entire body and effectively reviving systems still groggy from sleep, then you can tailor it. This part is fun and oh so satisfying, as our bodies are unique and have specific requirements, so therefore your yoga practice should be personal to you. Move your body in ways that feel amazing, but always adhere to basic yogic principles to avoid injury and to receive the maximum benefits.