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Beginner Yoga How To

How to Use a Wall for Sun Salutation

Yoga is for every body and every level. If traditional Sun Salutation is not available to you, try this variation using a wall as support.

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Sarit Z. Rogers

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Sun Salutation is an effective way to warm up your entire body, whether as preparation for more poses or simply to warm yourself up on a cold morning. It’s also a powerful practice on its own that can help you connect with your breath and the rhythmic movements of nature.

Sun Salutation can be made more accessible in a number of ways. You can either practice a variation of a traditional Sun Salutation series by adapting the individual positions within it, or you can remove poses or sections of the series that present the greatest challenge. Other ways to adapt the sequence include using props, such as a wall or chair, as well as practicing in bed or lying on a mat.

See also How to Adapt Asana for Each Age

Here are the main benefits of practicing Sun Salutation:

  • Warming up the entire body
  • Linking breath and movement
  • Creating a ritual, a series of movements that you can link together and repeat regularly
  • Connecting to nature 

Prayer Pose

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Sarit Z. Rogers

Exhale and lower your arms. Bring your palms together at your chest.

Upward Salute

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Sarit Z. Rogers

Inhale and raise your arms overhead as you look up gently, without straining your neck.

Modified Downward-Facing Dog Pose

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Sarit Z. Rogers

Exhale, step your left foot back to be parallel with your right foot, hip-width apart, into wall Downward-Facing Dog Pose.

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Sarit Z. Rogers

Inhale and step your right foot forward, bringing your toes up to the wall and bending your right knee. Keep your left leg straight. Press your chest away from the wall and lengthen your spine upward. Look up slightly.

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Sarit Z. Rogers

Inhale, raising your torso, and step both feet forward, halfway to the wall; bend your arms slightly. Exhale and engage your arms muscles.

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Sarit Z. Rogers

Inhale, bend your arms, and press your chest toward the wall as you come up onto your toes. Lift your chin, coming into a slight backbend. Keep your neck long without dropping your head back.

Modified Downward-Facing Dog Pose

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Exhale, step your left foot back to be parallel with your right foot, hip-width apart, into wall Downward-Facing Dog Pose.

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Sarit Z. Rogers
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Sarit Z. Rogers

Inhale, step your left foot forward and bend your left knee, keeping your right leg straight. Press your chest away from the wall. Lengthen your spine, looking up gently.

Modified Downward-Facing Dog Pose

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Exhale, step your left foot back to be parallel with your right foot, hip-width apart, into wall Downward-Facing Dog Pose.

Upward Salute

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Inhale and raise your head. Push off from the wall, keeping your arms lifted overhead. Look up gently.

Prayer Pose

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Inhale and raise your head. Push off from the wall, keeping your arms lifted overhead. Look up gently.

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From Accessible Yoga: Poses and Practices for Every Body by Jivana Heyman © 2019 by J. Heyman. Reprinted in arrangement with Shambhala Publications, Inc. Boulder, CO. www.shambhala.com