SUN SALUTATION (SURYA NAMASKAR)

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Sun salutation (surya namaskar)

The best exercise ever for me. Let me tell you the facts about it. Actually whenever it comes about sun salutation (surya namaskar) I found myself lucky to know it, to practice it. There is a lot to speak about sun salutation (surya namaskar) . It’s basically about the gratitude towards sun. In classic yoga it’s said that solar plexus which we is one of the chakra out of 7, its existence is just above the navel is energized and activate by practicing sun salutation regularly, which stimulates vitality, energy, concentration power, and activity. It’s a stretching exercise but once you will do it, you will find it more than that. When you perform sun salutation chant the mantras along with it. I have described each mantra along with it’s meaning in each pose. So let’s know more about sun salutation (surya namaskar) poses,its benefits and precautions while doing it.

Poses

  • Prayer pose (Pranamasana) 

 

    Steps:-

    • Stand straight at the edge of your mat. Keep your feet together or if you are not comfortable in it, keep small gap between your feet. Equalise your weight on both the feet. Keep your hands down at your sides.
    • Expand your chest and relax your shoulders.
    • Breath in slowly and lift up your arms from sides.

 

  • Exhale and bring both your arms together in prayer position in front of your chest and chant “Om Mitraye namaha”.

 

  • The meaning of this mantra is: the one who is friendly with everyone.

 Tips for deepening stretch:-

  • Keep your spine straight.
  • While chanting the mantra, express your gratitude to the sun.

 

  • Raised arms pose (hastauttanasana)

 

Steps:-

    • Breath in and lift up your arms and back.
    • Ensure that your biceps are close to ears. If you are beginner and not able to keep your biceps close to ears, so you can keep  it little far from your ears.
    • Now stretch your whole body from heels to finger tips. And chant the mantra “Om Ravaye Namaha”.

 

  • The meaning of this mantra is “the shinning one and radiant one”.

 

Tips for deepening stretch:-

  • You can push your pelvis little forward.
  • Reach up the fingers instead of bending backward.
  • Feel the stretch in your spine.

 

  • Hand to foot pose (hahastapadasana)

 

steps:-

    • Now breath out and bend forward from your hips while keeping your spine straight.
    • Exhale and bring your hands down to the floor beside your feet and chant the mantra “Om suryaye namaha”.

 

  • The meaning of this mantra is:- it is the dispeller of darkness, king of light, which is responsible for generating activity.

 

Tips for deepening stretch :-

  • You can bend your knees to bring your palms down to the floor.
  • Make efforts to straighten your knees.
  • Keep your hands free and relax in this pose.

 

 

  • Equestrain pose (ashwa sanchalanasana)

 

steps:-

    • Breath in and stretch your right leg back, as far as you can.
    • Touch your right leg knee on ground and tuck it’s toes.
    • Keep your left leg at the same place,between your hands. (its kind of half lunge)
    • Now lift your head towards the ceiling slowly and chant mantra “Om Bhanave namaha”.

 

  • The meaning of the mantra is, The one who illuminate or the bright one.

 

Tips for deepening stretch:-

  • Make sure your left leg is exactly in between your palm.
  • Feel the stretch in your inner thighs, neck and waist.

 

  • Stick pose (dandasana)

 

Steps:-

    • Breath in and bring your right leg back to the left leg.

 

  • Bring your whole body in straight line and chant mantra ” Om Khagaye namaha”.
  • The meaning of this mantra is the one who moves.

 

Tips for deepening stretch:-

  • Your arms should be perpendicular to the floor.
  • Focus on your core. The stick pose is a plank which works on core body and build your muscles strong, and improves your posture and balancing.

 

  • Salute with eight points or parts(ashtanga namaskar)

 

steps:-

    • Breath out and Bring down your knees to the floor gently then exhale.
    • Bring down your chest and elbows down, so that it can touch the ground.

 

  • Now lift up your hips and slide forward and chant the mantra “Om Pushne namaha”.
  • The meaning of this mantra is the one who provides nourishment and fulfilment.

 

Tips for deepening stretch :-

 

  • In this pose your eight body parts – two hands, two feet, two knees, chest and chin should touch the ground.
  • Cobra pose (bhujangasana)

 

steps:-

    • Breath in and slide forward and raise your chest up into the cobra pose.
    • You can bend your knees or simply stretch them.
    • Your shoulder should be away from your knees.

 

  • Look up slowly and chant the mantra “Om Hiranya Garbhaya Namaha”.
  • The meaning of this mantra is the one whose appearance is golden in colour.

 

 

Tips for deepening stretch :-

  • Breath in when you forward chest.
  • And exhale when you come into the cobra pose completely. While you exhale try to push your navel to the ground.
  • Tuck your toes under.
  • Don’t stretch too hard, that may cause harm to your spine. Know your limits and pose exactly like cobra. Don’t try to bend yourself too back.

 

  • Mountain pose (paravatasana)

 

Steps:-

    • Breath out and lift up your hips along with your tailbone.

 

  • Create an inverted “V” pose, by putting your face and chest downward and chant the mantra “Om Marichaye nahama”.
  • The meaning of this mantra is the one gives light with infinite rays.

 

Tips:-

  • Try to keep your heels on the ground.
  • And also try to lift up your tailbone.

 

  • Equestrian pose (ashwa sanchalasana)

 

Steps:-

    • Breath in and  bring your left foot forward in between the two palm.
    • Touch your right knee to the ground and press hip down, tuck it’s toes.

 

  • Look up slowly and chant the mantra “Om Aditiyaye namaha”.
  • The meaning of this mantra is the son of cosmic divine mother Aditi.

 

Tips for deepening stretch:-

  • Feel the stretch in your inner thighs, waist and neck.

 

  • Hand to foot pose (hastapadasana)

 

Steps:-

    • Breath out and bring your left foot forward and raise your waist up.

 

  • Keep your palms on the ground and chant the mantra “Om Savitre Namah”.
  • The meaning of this mantra is the one who is responsible for life.

 

Tips for deepening stretch is same which was mentioned before for this pose.

 

  • Raised arms pose (hastauttanasana)

 

steps:-

  • Breath in and lift your spine up.
  • Raise your hands up and bend backward a little bit.
  • Push your hips slightly outward and chant the mantra “Om Arkaaya namaha”.
  • The meaning of this mantra is one who worthy of praise and glory.

Tips of deepening stretch is same as mentioned before for raised arms pose.

 

  • Prayer pose (pranamasana)

 

Steps:-

 

  • Now bring your hands down to the prayer pose and chant the mantra “Om Bhaskaraye Namaha”.
  • The meaning of this mantra is the one who provides the wisdom and cosmic illumination.

 

Now the most important thing to know is that it’s a half cycle which I mentioned above, means the 12 poses constitute half a round, still half cycle is left, practicing the same cycle only with a minor changes, that is, in 16th pose which is equestrian pose stretch your left leg instead of right,and in pose 21, which is again equestrian pose,bend the right leg and bring the right foot in between your palms. The total 24 poses will complete one cycle.  

And if you are beginner then practice one cycle and than according to your capacity increase the cycle every week. Practicing minimum 12 cycle is best and you can extend it to 108 cycles as well.

Right time to practice Sun salutation (surya namaskar) :-

Best time for practicing sun salutation is the fresh early morning, when sun rises but if you are not able to practice it early in the morning you can also practice it during noon, it will energize your body instantly.

You can perform it any time but make sure that your stomach is empty before it. (after 3-4 hours of having meal)

At what pace sun salutation (surya namaskar) should be practice:

At three pace you can perform sun salutation:-

  • Slow pace – Practicing sun salutation at slow pace make your body flexible because it stretches the body completely.
  • Medium pace – practicing sun salutation at medium pace tone your muscles.
  • Fast pace – if you practice sun salutation at fast pace its is very good for weight loss, as its a cardiovascular exercise (doing at fast pace)

Benefits of sun salutation (surya namaskar) :-

Well there are so many benefits of surya namaskar, as i told you before it’s best workout for me. I do it at all pace. I start doing it with slow pace, so that my body get fully flexible and manage my balancing in performing sun salutation at fast pace. Secondary I practice it at medium pace to tone my muscles and at the end I practice it at fast pace. Main benefits of sun salutation are:-

 

  • Its best stretching exercise.

 

  • Your body stays disease-free and healthy if you practice it regularly.
  • It is also helpful in improving balance of body.
  • Sun salutation is package of standing, bending forward and backward, laying and more, when we practice it properly, it improves blood circulation throughout the body.
  • It is very good for heart health.
  • It also tones the digestive tract.
  • It stimulates respiratory system, lymphatic system, abdominal muscles, spinal nerves and other internal organ.

 

Sun salutation (surya namaskar) benefits for hairs, skin and weight loss:-

 

  • Sun salutation improves blood circulation to your scalp and all other parts of the body, thus your hair grows faster and also become healthy and your skin also get protected from wrinkles and starts glowing.
  • If we talk about weight loss,than its magical physical workout for weight loss. As its a overall body workout and it works on every part of our body. By increasing the number of sun salutation cycles you can reduce your weight in safe way.

 

  • When you shed extra pounds of your body, your skin automatically glows, as your body is detoxifies.

Now read it…what are the precautions and contradiction for sun salutation:-

Those who are patient of any of the following disease- high blood pressure, coronary artery disease, stroke, hernia, and during mensuration should not practice sun salutation.

Pranayama : Yog Kriya by Priya

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Priya Mohane

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