The Sun Salutations are the most popular asana sequences in yoga. It is a series of postures designed to warm the body, help to strengthen your muscles, improve flexibility, increase energy levels while keeping you calm and focused on your breath. The Sun Salutations, or Surya Namaskars, are one of the best yogic practices to learn and master. We have compiled the best free surya namaskar videos for beginners and experienced yogis from YouTube. We have grouped these videos into two sections—the first will explain the class version, the second focuses on versions A and B. These YouTube videos will explain and teach you how to do these poses correctly, while providing modifications and tips for beginners.
What are the different types of sun salutations?
There are 3 main variations of Sun Salutations. They all contain a core set of movements and are sequenced similarity but they differ slightly based on the tradition, number of postures, and intensity of practice. Each variation has its own benefits, and these benefits also change based on the pace that one practices the sun salutation. Many vinyasa or flow yoga teachers will mix in creative modifications and add other poses into the following variations of sun salutations.
- Classic Sun Salutation — This version contains 12 poses and is best for beginners. You will find slightly different versions taught depending on the school or tradition. Instructors usually lead this version at a slower pace, holding each pose for a few breaths. The classic series is usually practiced in sets of two, switching which leg is stepping forward and back in the lunges.
- Ashtanga Vinyasa Sun Salutation A — This version is similar to the classic sun salutation, but it contains 11 movements with more challenging poses and transitions. Version A includes plank to chantaranga push up movement that requires a good amount of upper body strength to be performed correctly. This is the most popular variation, so it is the best one to learn if you plan on going to a yoga studio or taking online classes.
- Ashtanga Vinyasa Sun Salutation B — This version is longer and more intense than Series A, and should only be attempted after some experience with practicing the previous series. The addition of Chair pose and Warrior 1 builds additional strength in the legs. Both A and B versions are intended to be performed with each movement linked to each inhale or exhale.
Usually one or more sun salutations are incorporated into a yoga class, but they can be practiced by themselves for a shorter session. If you practice them regularly, you’ll quickly be able to memorize the movements and notice an improvement in both physical fitness and mental clarity.
Classic sun salutation videos
How to Do the Sun Salutation by Sivanandacanada
The Traditional Surya Namaskar is the only version taught in a Sivananda yoga class. This quick 1 minute video only instructs one side—it is recommended to two rounds to lead each with a different leg—so this is best used if you want a quick overview of the classic version.
Traditional Sun Salutation by Hollie Wakeham
Filmed against a beautiful backdrop, this 10-minute video is best for beginners. The first two rounds are taught slowly, with detailed instructions and modifications for new students and those with challenges with strength and flexibility. The last two rounds are the full traditional salutations.
Traditional Sun Salutation by Yoga With Lena
In this 8-minute video you will learn the movements for the traditional sun salutation with the breath. The class begins with a half sun salutation and continues with four repetitions of the full classic sun salutation.
Sun Salutation A and B videos
Sun Salutation a Flow for Beginners by YogiApproved
Yoga teacher Ashton August breaks down the nuances of body alignment and explains how to link breath with the movements of the Sun Salutation. This 13-minute beginner class begins with an explanation of the benefits of the sequence and then moves into a step-by-step explanation of each asana.
How To Do Sun Salutation A, The Right Way by Well+Good
Yoga instructor Tess Koenig explains and demonstrates common mistakes students make when practicing sun salutations. While this is a bit dramatic, it clearly illustrates how you should not be practicing these poses. Afterwards, she leads the sequence the right way with detailed cues, modifications and variations.
Sun Salutation A Steps (Surya Namaskar) Tutorial by Yoga Screen
This 3-minute video starts with a brief explanation of Surya Namaskar and continues with a clear and detailed explanation of each step in the sequence. The close-up shots of the transition and modifications are especially helpful for beginners.
How To: Sun Salutation A with Caley Alyssa
In this tutorial, Caley will guide you through the essential components of the A Series of Sun Salutations and her tips and modifications for each pose. 7-Minute instructional Sun Salutation A class
Sun Salutations Flow You Can Practice Every Day by Rituals Cosmetics Global
This 13-minute class combines five traditional and five Series A sun salutations in a row. The movements are synced with the breath, so beginners may find it to be too fast to comfortably follow along, but this is a great energizing and strengthening class for more advanced yogis.
Sun Salutation A, Technique & Modifications by Cat Meffan
Geared towards beginners, this 24-minute class begins with a short warm up and continues with detailed instruction on the techniques, foundations and modifications of Sun Salutation A. The video ends with three sun salutations taught while moving with the breath in each pose.
Sun Salutation B by Yoga With Adriene
In this 9-minute class Adriene takes us through each asana in this sequence, providing variations and detailed instructions. This is a great video for beginners or for yogis wanting a slow flow through this challenging sequence. A second round of Sun Salutation B is instructed in silence.
How To: Sun Salutation B with Caitlin Turner by Alo Yoga
This 5-minute Sun Salutation B tutorial is a great introduction for beginners. Follow along with this class to learn how to use Sun Salutation B as a base for a strong yoga practice.
Sun Salutations A and B with Kino
This 26-minute class provides a great overview of the Ashtanga Sun Salutations. Kino teaches the traditional Vinyasa Count for both Sun Salutation A and B and provides clear and detailed modifications and instruction to make these sequences accessible and approachable regardless of your current level of physical ability.
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