The Half Sun Salutation is a modified version of the traditional Sun Salutation, focusing on the standing elements without the prone positions. It is a gentle warm-up sequence that helps to warm up the spine and shoulders.
Let’s go through the steps:
1. Start in standing (Mountain Pose): Stand tall with your feet together or hip-width apart. Ground your feet into the mat, engage your core, and relax your shoulders. Let your arms hang naturally by your sides.
2. Inhale and reach the arms overhead: On an inhalation, sweep your arms out to the sides and lift them overhead. Keep your back flat, lengthen your spine, and gaze slightly upward.
3. Exhale and forward fold: On an exhalation, hinge forward from your hips, bringing your chest toward your thighs. Allow your arms to sweep down wide as you fold. Tuck your chin toward your chest and gaze back through your legs.
4. Inhale into a half lift: Inhale and lift your torso halfway up, extending your spine and reaching your head forward. Press your buttocks back slightly to create length in your spine. Keep your neck in line with the rest of your spine, looking straight down.
5. Exhale to a forward fold: Exhale and fold forward again, releasing any tension and surrendering deeper into the fold.
6. Inhale and lift with a flat back: On an inhalation, drop your buttocks slightly, pull your chest forward, and flatten your spine. Extend your arms out wide and lift them overhead as you come to a slight backbend.
7. Exhale and bring the hands to prayer position: Exhale and bring your hands to the front of your sternum, palms pressed together in prayer position. Take a moment to center yourself and feel the energy in your body.
The Half Sun Salutation can be repeated several times to gently warm up the body, especially the spine, hamstrings, shoulders, and upper back. It is a great practice for the day after a hard workout when you want to gently stretch and invigorate your body.
Remember to move with your breath and listen to your body. Modify the poses as needed and focus on finding a comfortable range of motion for your body. Enjoy the gentle warm-up and the benefits it brings to your practice!
If you have any further questions, feel free to ask!