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Ashtanga, a physically demanding practice that involves synchronizing the breath with near-constant movement in a prescribed series of postures, is already rich with Sun Salutations in the form of two sequences: Sun Salutation A and Sun Salutation B, which weaves in Chair Pose and Warrior I. If you’re already familiar with A and B and are up for something a bit more improvisational, give Sun Salutation C a try.
Warrior Pose I
TO BEGIN Start with the seven poses from Sun Salutation B, then go to C.
Step forward with your right leg and gradually bend your right knee. Lift from the tailbone toward the navel and move your arms and torso into a vertical position. Turn the back foot slightly in, while squaring the hips and torso. Hold for 5–10 breaths.
Warrior Pose II
Open your arms and hips, lifting your pelvic floor and lower abdomen to facilitate the widening of the front of the pelvis and external rotation of the hips and thighs. Extend strongly through your arms and hands. Hold for 5–10 breaths.
See alsoStand Strong in Warrior II Pose
Extended Side Angle Pose
Lightly bring the right hand to the floor alongside the little-toe edge of the right foot and extend your left arm over your left ear. Draw your right knee against your right arm. Press down into the outer edge of the left foot. Hold for 5–10 breaths.
Extended Triangle Pose
Straighten your right leg and bring your left arm to a vertical position. Lift your kneecaps by engaging your quadriceps, and either grab the big toe of the right foot with the right hand or place your hand on the ankle or shin. Hold for 5–10 breaths.
Half Moon Pose
Bend your right leg and place your right hand about a foot in front of the right foot, leaning forward to straighten the right leg. Bring the left leg up so it’s parallel to the floor. Flex the foot; extend the left arm up. Hold for 5–10 breaths.
Revolved Half Moon Pose
Parivrtta Ardha Chandrasana
Place your left hand on the floor next to your right one and lift your right arm straight up by twisting the torso. Point the left foot and extend the left leg. Hold for 5–10 breaths. Bend your left knee and lower the foot.
Revolved Triangle Pose
Straighten your right leg, turn your back foot in, and internally rotate your left thigh. Place your left hand to the outside of your right foot. Draw your right hip back and down, extend your right arm up, and open your chest. Hold for 5–10 breaths.
Revolved Side Angle Pose
Move your left foot back about a foot and bend your right knee over your right ankle. Move your right hip back and in, drawing your sitting bones toward each other. Press into the outer edge of your left foot. Hold for 5–10 breaths.
Warrior Pose I
Raise arms overhead while lifting from the tailbone toward the navel and moving the arms and torso into a vertical position. Turn the back foot slightly in and ground the outer edge, while squaring the hips and torso. Hold for 5–10 breaths.
Four-Limbed Staff Pose
On an exhale, bring your hands to the floor; step back with your right leg. Bend your arms and lower your chest until your shoulders are the same height as your elbows, balancing on your toes, keeping your thighs and midsection firm.
Upward-Facing Dog Pose
Urdhva Mukha Svanasana
On an inhale, push forward through your toes and bring your chest upward until your arms are straight, pressing firmly into the tops of your feet as you broaden your chest and roll your shoulders out and down away from your ears.
Downward-Facing Dog Pose
Adho Mukha Svanasana
Pull your toes forward until you can use the toe tips as pivot points, then flip feet and push back through your hands, moving shoulders back. Drop your head and press through your heels. Hold for 5–10 breaths. Repeat sequence on other side.
TO END Finish with these eight poses from Sun Salutation B.