Surya Namaskara (IPA: [su:rjɐ nɐmɐskɐ:rɐ]; Sanskrit: सूर्य नमस्कार; IAST: Sūrya Namaskāra) also known in English as Sun Salutation (lit. "salute to the sun") is a common sequence of asanas. Its origins lie in a worship of Surya, the Hindu solar deity. This sequence of movements and asanas can be practised on varying levels of awareness, ranging from that of physical exercise in various styles, to a complete sadhana which incorporates asana, pranayama, mantra and chakra meditation. It is often the beginning vinyasa within a longer yoga series. Sūrya Namaskāra may also refer to other styles of "Salutations to the Sun".
The Hatha Yoga Pradipika, the oldest known hatha yoga text does not mention "Sun Salutations" but mentions a sūrya-bhedana (sun-piercing) kumbhaka (II, 44 and 48-50) while the Gheraṇḍa Saṁhitā mentions sūrya-bheda kumbhaka (58-59). The oldest documented book with clear depictions of asanas is the Sritattvanidhi, though there is no mention of "Sun Salutations" in the text, it does describe the asanas "Sarpasana" (Bhujangasana), "Gajasana" (Adhomukh Swannasan), "Uttanasana" and series of asanas done in tandem, similar to Sūrya Namaskāra.[page needed].
Incidentally the translator of the ancient Sritattvanidhi, Krishnaraja Wodeyar III, was also responsible for arranging for Sri. T. Krishnamacharya to teach yoga at Yogaśālā in Mysore sometime around 1930. Sri. T. Krishnamacharya's teachings are largely responsible for the modern version of Sūrya Namaskāra as seen in modern day Ashtanga Vinyasa Yoga and the Visesha Vinyasa Sun Salutation subroutine from Vinyasa Krama Yoga, as well as a host of other popular forms of yoga. K. Pattabhi Jois claims to have taught exactly as he had learned from Krishnamacharya, though other than personal testimony, there seems to be no other evidence as to the precise content of Krishnamacharya's teachings.. While Krishnamacharya's specific sources for his yoga teachings are unclear, it is said that he learned from Sri Ramamohana Brahmachari in the Himilayan Mountains (perhaps Muktinath were his son has visited , but certainly somewhere near the Gandaki River in Nepal) beginning in 1916; however, the source of his teaching (at the Mysore Yogashala or otherwise) is not otherwise documented. Krishnamacharya's son attests to his father having developed some of his teachings himself. There is the possibility that he may have been influenced by the Mysore Palace Gymnastics Tradition.
Raja of Aundh 
Another indication as to the origins of Sūrya Namaskāra is the 1928 Indian publication of "The Ten Point Way of Health" by Raja Bhavan Rao Srinivas ("Bala Sahib"), Pant Pratinidhi of Aundh (1868–1951; Raja of Aundh 1909-1947), followed by later publication in England in 1938. The Raja claims to have practiced the series as a child. And some sources report that only after extensive practice and analysis (and potentially modification) himself did he finally publish the book. Thus, the true origin of the series remains unclear, though it has to be noted that Raja of Aundh, himself never claimed to have invented Surya Namaskar. Further he actually stressed on the ancient origins of this procedure. He helped in popularizing surya namaskar as a simple physical exercise for all round development of an individual in India. He introduced it in schools as a form of education and encouraged even the ordinary man to be physically fit by performing surya namaskar every day. Still, how exactly Sūrya Namaskāra came to be included in the yogic practices of Hatha and Ashtanga Yoga remains unclear.
Other References 
Other sources which cite early use of "Sun Salutations" are A Short History of Aryan Medical Science from 1896, which claims that in India "there are various kinds of physical exercise indoors and outdoors. But some of the Hindoos set aside a portion of their daily worship for making salutations to the Sun by prostrations. This method of adoration affords them so much muscular activity that it takes to some extent the place of physical exercise".
Early English publications record some ancient methods of sun salutation; however, the do not seem to be related to the modern Sūrya Namaskāra as seen in Yoga practice today. In "A Catalogue raisonnée [sic] of oriental manuscripts", noted that a short book with 71 leaves with "Tricha calpa vidhi" from "Aditya Puranam" was preserved. He describes the vidhi as "Modes of rendering homage to Sun, with praise and spells; the object being health or delivery from disease". He further notes the presence of Arghya Pradana, Surya Stotaram, Aditya dvadasa namam - 12 names of the Sun according to the monthly signs of zodiac, Surya Narayana cavacham, Saurashtacshari mantram, and many other elaborate rituals as the part of the vidhi. In Page 148 of the same book he describes a shorter version called "Laghu tricha kalpa vidhi".
Historically it is widely believed in the state of Maharashtra that Shivaji Maharaj, Sage Samarth Ramdas and the Marathas have performed Sūrya Namaskāra as a physical exercise to develop able bodies.Template:Page Needed This is not surprising since 'vyayama' (physical exercise in Sanskrit) traditionally has been influenced by spirituality. Many physical practices have ingrained spiritual values in them. In addition spiritual training is considered as a part of physical training from ancient times in India.
Valmiki Ramayana 
Aditya Hridayam is another ancient practice which involves a variation of Sūrya Namaskāra. It is a procedure of saluting The Sun, taught to Sri Rama by Sage Agastya, before his fight with Ravana. It is described in the "Yuddha Kaanda" Canto 107 of Ramayana.
- Surya Namaskara, like most asanas, is recommended to be performed on an empty stomach. Therefore some recommend a gap of at least two hours after eating and before performing the namaskara. It is generally practiced in the morning before breakfast or in evening.
- In some traditions, 12 Surya Namaskaras are performed at one practice. If starting that practice for the first time, it is generally started with fewer (3 to 6) Namaskaras per day, and then gradually increased to 12 Namaskaras per session by the time a week is over.
- Shavasana is practiced at the end of practice for rest.
- Pranayama is synchronized with asanas.
- Mantras can be pronounced at the start of each Surya namaskara.
- There are a total of 8 different asanas in the sequence of the 12 asana changes of Surya namaskara. Some asanas are repeated twice in the same cycle of a Surya Namaskara.
- In a traditional Hindu context, Surya Namaskara is always performed facing in the direction of the rising (east) or setting (west) sun.
- As per the scriptures one who performs the Surya Namaskaras daily does not get poor in a thousand births.
- There are 5 ways in which breathing should be done during Surya Namaskar.
Series summary 
|4||Aekpaadprasarnaasana (one foot back, lift head, hands often on earth )||inhale|
|5||Adho Mukha Svanasana||exhale|
|8||Adho Mukha Svanasana||exhale|
|9||Ashwa Sanchalanasana (opposite foot forward from 4, hands often on earth )||inhale|
Mantras to pronounce and chakras 
The following mantra is pronounced at the beginning of Surya Namaskara practice:
om dhyeyaḥ sadā savitra maṇḍala madhyavartī nārāyaṇa sarasijā sanasanni viṣṭaḥ
keyūravāna makarakuṇḍalavāna kirīṭī hārī hiraṇmaya vapura dhṛtaśaṁkha cakraḥ
ॐ ध्येयः सदा सवित्र मण्डल मध्यवर्ती नारायण सरसिजा सनसन्नि विष्टः
केयूरवान मकरकुण्डलवान किरीटी हारी हिरण्मय वपुर धृतशंख चक्रः
There are certain chakras corresponding to each asana. Attention is to be brought to them when performing Surya Namaskara.
The following mantras are pronounced in each asana:
|1||om hrāṁ (ॐ ह्रां)||om mitrāya namaḥ (ॐ मित्राय नमः)||Anahata||Pranamasana|
|2||om hrīṁ (ॐ ह्रीं)||om ravaye namaḥ (ॐ रवये नमः)||Vishuddhi||Hasta Uttanasana|
|3||om hrūṁ (ॐ ह्रूं)||om sūryāya namaḥ (ॐ सूर्याय नमः)||Swadhisthana||Hastapaadasana|
|4||om hraiṁ (ॐ ह्रैं)||om bhānave namaḥ (ॐ भानवे नमः)||Ajna||Aekpaadprasarnaasana|
|5||om hrauṁ (ॐ ह्रौं)||om khagāya namaḥ (ॐ खगाय नमः)||Vishuddhi||Dandasana|
|6||om hraḥ (ॐ ह्रः)||om puṣṇe namaḥ (ॐ पूष्णे नमः)||Manipura||Ashtanga Namaskara|
|7||om hrāṁ (ॐ ह्रां)||om hiraṇya garbhāya namaḥ (ॐ हिरण्यगर्भाय नमः)||Swadhisthana||Bhujangasana|
|8||om hrīṁ (ॐ ह्रीं)||om marīcaye namaḥ (ॐ मरीचये नमः)||Vishuddhi||Adho Mukha Svanasana|
|9||om hrūṁ (ॐ ह्रूं)||om ādityāya namaḥ (ॐ आदित्याय नमः)||Ajna||Ashwa Sanchalanasana|
|10||om hraiṁ (ॐ ह्रैं)||om savitre namaḥ (ॐ सवित्रे नमः)||Swadhisthana||Uttanasana|
|11||om hrauṁ (ॐ ह्रौं)||om arkāya namaḥ (ॐ अर्काय नमः)||Vishuddhi||Hasta Uttanasana|
|12||om hraḥ (ॐ ह्रः)||om bhāskarāya namaḥ (ॐ भास्कराय नमः)||Anahata||Pranamasana|
|13||om hraḥ (ॐ ह्रः)||om sri savitra soorya narayanaaya namaḥ (ॐ श्री सवित्र सूर्या नारायणाय नमः)||Anahata||Pranamasana|
The following mantra is pronounced at the end of Surya Namaskara practice:
ādityasya namaskāran ye kurvanti dine dine
āyuḥ prajñā balam vīryam tejasteśān ca jāyate
आदित्यस्य नमस्कारन् ये कुर्वन्ति दिने दिने
आयुः प्रज्ञा बलम् वीर्यम् तेजस्तेशान् च जायते
Translations: Those who salutes the sun every day, (their) life expectancy, conscious, strength, courage and vital power would grow.
See also 
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Surya Namaskar|
- Indian Express (04-09-2010). Destination Delhi.
- Svatmarama 15th century CE, trans. 1992.
- Swatmarama 15th century CE, trans. 1915.
- Sjoman 1999.
- Sjoman 1999, p. 53.
- Ramaswami 2005, p. 213-219.
- Singleton 2012, p. 176.
- Medin 2004, p. 9.
- Sjoman 1999, p. 50.
- Medin 2004, p. 13.
- Steiner 2012, p. The Whose Who of the Ashtanga Yoga Tradition.
- Sjoman 1999, p. 51.
- Medin 2004, p. 7.
- Sjoman 1999, p. 53.
- Hall 2012, p. Balasahib's 1928 Suya Namaskar.
- S.P.Sen, Dictionary of National Biography; Institute of Historical Studies, Calcutta 1972 Vols.1-4; Institute of Historical Studies, vol 3, p.307
- Pratinidhi 1938, p. 16.
- Alter 2000, p. 95.
- Royal India: A Descriptive and Historical Study of India's Fifteen Principal States and Their Rulers By Katherine H. Diver, Maud Diver, (year 1942)
- Alter 2000, p. 99.
- Alter 2004, p. 23.
- Simhajī 1896, p. 6.
- A Catalogue raisonnée [sic of oriental manuscripts, Rev. William Cooke Taylor, H. Smith, (year 1860, Page 246)]
- (Editor) Mujumdar 1950.
- sanskrit.safire.com, Aditya Hrudayam with English translation
- Translation of Ramayana by Griffith
- ""preferable to do suryanamaskar early mornings" http://lifestyle.in.msn.com/health/article.aspx?cp-documentid=1670124
- if you are new, start with 2-3 http://www.yogajournal.com/practice/1040
- Sjoman, N.E. (1999). Yoga tradition in Mysore Palace. Abhinav publications. ISBN 81-7017-389-2.
- Ramaswami, Srivatsa (2005). The Complete Book of Vinyasa Yoga. Da Capo Press. ISBN 978-1-56924-402-9.
- Simhajī, Bhagavat (1896). A Short history of Aryan Medical Science. Macmillan.
- Swami; (Eng. Trans.) Becherer, Elsy; (Commentary) Rieker, Hans Ulrich (15th century CE, trans. 1992). http://www.hermetics.org/pdf/HathaYogaPradipika.pdf. Missing or empty
- Swatmarama, Swami; (Trans.) Sinh, Pancham (15th century CE, trans. 1915). Allahabad http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Hatha_Yoga_Pradipika. Missing or empty
- (Editor) Mujumdar, Dattatraya Chintaman (1950). Encyclopedia of Indian Physical Culture: A Comprehensive Survey of the Physical Education in India, Profusely Illustrating Various Activities of Physical Culture, Games, Exercises, Etc., as Handed Over to Us from Our Fore-fathers and Practised in India. Good Companions.
- Singleton, Mark (2010). Yoga Body: The Origins of Modern Posture Practice. Oxford University Press.
- Steiner, Ronald (2012). "AshtangaYoga.info". Retrieved 2012-05-19.
- Hall, Anthony Grimm (2012). "Balasahib's Original 1928 Suya Namaskar". Retrieved 2012-05-26.
- Pratinidhi, Shrimant Balasahib Pandit (1938). The Ten Point Way to Health. J. M. Dent and Sons Ltd. Retrieved 2012-05-25.
- Alter, Joseph S. (2000). Gandhi's Body: Sex, Diet, and the Politics of Nationalism. University of Pennsylvania Press. ISBN 978-0-812-23556-2.
- Alter, Joseph S. (2004). Yoga in Modern India: The Body between Science and Philosophy. Princeton University Press. ISBN 978-0-691-11876-1 Check
- Medin, R. Alexander; Summerbell, Deirdre (2004). 3 Gurus, 48 Questions: Matching interviews with SRI T.K.V. DESIKACHAR, SRI B.K.S. IYENGAR & SRI K. PATTABHI JOIS.