Today we are going to touch upon Surya Namaskar is one of the most important components of yoga practice. Surya Namaskar is mainly geared at warming your body up before you start Let me just start by defining the Asana (poses). what ‘Surya Namaskar’ means Surya is Sun. Namaskara is Salutation. So, Surya Namaskar started as a prayer to the Sun Surya Namaskar consist of 12 different postures, which you string together. Each of the postures has very different benefits and the Surya Namaskar as a whole gives a phenomenal stretch to the whole body and no other exercises you can compare to the kind of stretch that Surya Namaskar gives. Surya Namaskar is ideally done on an empty stomach. and its best done early in the morning or late in the evening just before dinner. If you have a lower back problem or High Blood Pressure, please consult with your doctor before you start doing the Surya Namaskar. As I said, there are 12 different postures that compose the Surya Namaskar. I’m going to take you through each of these postures. Help correct the alignments and tell you the benefits of each of these postures. First, make sure you are standing tall. Your toes are pointing forward. Your feet are parallel and directly below the hips. Roll your shoulders back. Your chest is open. Chin is parallel to the floor. Look at a point in front of you. Breathe normally
Position 1: your palms together in front of your chest prayer position.
Position 2: your arms are stretched up. First take the time to really stretch the arms, lengthening both sides of the body and slightly arched back. Making sure your head always remains in-between your hands. Your knees are locked.
Position 3: stretch all the way forward. Try and get you back as flat as possible & come down. Place your palms on either side of your feet and drop your head down. In this position make sure your knees are locked and make sure that all the weight is evenly distributed on your feet so that the weight is not entirely on your heels. now fingers and toes in on straight line. and now take the right leg all the way back.
position 4. Your knees on the mat. Your foot is flat. Your hip is down. Your chin is up. Your chest is open.
Position 5: take the other leg back into a straight line. Your shoulder, your wrist in one line. Your neck is in line with your spine. Your feet are together. Your heels are together.
Position 6: drop the knees down. Allow the hips to stay up. Bring the chest and chin down. Elbows are close to the body and chin is on the mat. Alternatively, you can also place your forehead on the mat instead of the chin. Whichever you find comfortable. Now, slide the chest forward through your hands. Chin up. The minute you do that, you flatten your feet to protect the lower back, bring the heels together. Your inner thighs are squeezed together. Your glutes are active. Your back is slightly arched. Your chest is open.
Position 8: tuck the toes. Lift your hips up, into the inverted ‘V’. In the inverted ‘V’ your hips are up, your knees are locked. Your heels should try and reach the ground. But that’s not essential. It depends from person to person. Your head is in-between your hands Top of the head trying to reach the mat. Your chest trying to come towards the thighs.
Position 9: bring the same right leg which you took back, all the way forward. Place the chin up. Knee down. foot flat. now in this position, one of the most important things to remember is that your knee and ankle are in one straight line. Sometimes the knee goes all the way forward. this places a lot of stress to the knee. So always make sure the knee and ankle are in one line. Your palms are flat. Now bring the other leg forward and stretch all the way down. Drop your head down.
Position 11: Stretch your arms forward and come back up and arch, head in-between your hands.
Position 12: both palms by the side of your body and relax. So, one round of Surya Namaskar comprises of these.
12 postures done entirely on the right side and on the left side. We’ve just finished the right side.
We’ll go through the left side once again.
1. palms together
3. Stretch all the way forward and come down
4. Left leg back, Chin up, Hip down
5. Come into a straight line
6. Drop the knees, chest, and chin
7. Slide the body forward and arch Make sure the heels are together.
8. Tuck the toes. Coming into the inverted ‘V’
9. Bring the left leg all the way forward. Chin up.
10. Bring the other leg forward. Stretching down.
11. Stretch forward and arch.
12. Hands by the side of your body. The Surya Namaskar is a very powerful practice and there are tremendous benefits in doing this Surya Namaskar. But, if you do the Surya Namaskar with bad alignment, bad posture, the same Surya Namaskar can also be very harmful to your body. So, make sure, read this Blog carefully, make sure, you make all the alignment corrections.