Six Places to Do 108 Sun Salutations for the Summer Solstice

Start the summer off right.

Yoga Mala at Lemon Hill | Photo via Facebook

Fairmount Park Conservancy’s Yoga Mala | Photo via Facebook

It may already feel like summer, but technically speaking, summer doesn’t actually start until June 21st: the Summer Solstice. For most people, this may just be any old day. But for yogis, it’s a very special day — and we’ll tell you why! Yogis everywhere will be welcoming summer by practicing Yoga Mala, a series of 108 sun salutations broken down into four sets of 27 or nine sets of 12.

Traditional Yoga Mala is done with a string of 108 beads (called a Mala) — one bead for each sun salutation. Why 108, you ask? This number has been considered sacred in Hinduism and Buddhism as long as anyone can remember. Yogis practice 108 sun salutations to honor and appreciate their past accomplishments, as well as re-evaluate their goals and clear their minds. Sounds like a pretty good way to start a new season, right? 

And lucky for you, we’ve rounded up six places where you can take on the challenge of doing 108 sun salutations to celebrate the 2015 Summer Solstice this weekend. We’ve even included three more spots to do yoga if Yoga Mala seems a bit intense for your liking. Happy Summer!

108 Sun Salutations

Yoga Mala at Lemon Hill
Where: Lemon Hill, Sedgley Drive, Fairmount Park
When: 9 a.m. to noon on Sunday, June 21st
Cost: Free or a $10 donation if you choose
FYI: The Fairmount Park Conservancy is partnering up with Philadelphia Parks & Rec., KIND, and Athleta to bring you free outdoor Yoga Mala led by Philly yogis Nicole Taylor, Emile Sorger and Justine Bacon. The first 50 pre-registered folks to check in will receive a free Athleta yoga mat, so if you’re not an early bird, don’t forget to bring your own!

Diamond Hot Yoga Salute the Godz
Where: 1000 Diamond Street, Suite 108, North Philly
When: 1 to 4 p.m. on Sunday, June 21
Cost: $10.00
FYI: Come get your sun salutation on at this unique Yoga Mala set to the sounds of your favorite hip-hop artists. And don’t forget to stick around after class for awesome giveaways, community building activities, and fresh juice. Yum!

Nourishing Storm
Where: 124 North York Road, Hatboro
When: 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 20th
Cost: $15 for members, $25 for non-members
FYI: Drop by Nourishing Storm Studio 1 for traditional Yoga Mala to celebrate the start of a new calendar season with a clear mind and a refreshed spirit. Create a new set of intentions for yourself as well as appreciate your past accomplishments with this sacred yoga flow. You can stay for just a few salutations or try all 108!

Armita Yoga and Wellness
Where: 1204 Frankford Avenue, Fishtown
When: 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 21st
Cost: $20 to $30 suggested donation
FYI: Now you can find inner peace through traditional Yoga Mala and give back to the community. There’s really no better way to kick off a new season. All proceeds from this event will be donated to Noistar Thai Animal Rescue Foundation, a nonprofit organization that rescues and cares for neglected dogs in Koh Tao, Thailand. Save the puppies, guys!

Moondog Yoga Summer Sunrise Solstice
Where: Quakertown Memorial Park between Veteran’s Monument and the Wooden Playground, Memorial Park, Quakertown
When: 7 to 8:30 a.m. on Sunday, June 21st
Cost: $12
FYI: Calling all early-rising yogis! Watch the morning sunrise while you wake up your body, mind, and spirit with 108 sun salutations. But remember, registration is required. So make sure you sign up ASAP.

Whole Body Yoga Studio
Where: 12 Morris Road, Ambler
When: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, June 20th
Cost: Free; donations recommended
FYI: Come to the scenic Wissahickon Valley Watershed Association (WVWA) to join in on this Yoga Mala. Don’t forget to bring your own yoga mat and some H2O to stay hydrated! All donations benefit the WVWA.

Other Yoga Events

Dhyana Yoga Warm Up for Summer Solstice
Where: Comcast Center, 1701 JFK Boulevard, Philadelphia
When: 9 to 11 a.m. on Saturday, June 20th
Cost: Free!
FYI: Swing by the Comcast Center to get warmed up for the 108 sun salutations you’ll be doing the next day with this free yoga class presented by Dhyana Yoga studio.

DIG Yoga Solstice Yoga
Where: 410 Monroe Street, Philadelphia, Upstairs Studio
When: 7 to 9:30 p.m. on Friday, June 19th
Cost: $35
FYI: Join yoga instructor Mariel Freeman and DJ Sylo for a night of music, yoga, and featured vendors (such as Lululemon! Score.) to celebrate the summer solstice. The event is limited to 50 people, so make sure to get your tickets now if you want to join in.

Outdoor Yoga at the Race Street Pier
Where: Race Street Pier, North Columbus Boulevard, Delaware Waterfront
When: 7 a.m. on Friday June 19th; 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, June 20th, and Sunday, June 21st
Cost: Free!
FYI: These free outdoor yoga classes happen seven days a week — no joke! Remember to bring your own yoga mat, and kids and pets are welcome too!

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