About Surya Namaskar
Surya Namaskar has been embedded in our routine life since the Vedic Era. Doing Surya Namaskar would be able to give a deep effect on detoxifying organs and a deeper relaxation effect on your body. Innumerable people have been benefitted by performing Suryanamaskar for ages.
Suryanamaskar, for a commoner, is a miniature of Ashtanga Yoga. The credit for preserving this great tradition goes to people who lived like rishis. Rishis have given this great mantra of health, fitness, and immunity to future generations.
The objective of Surya Namaskar
The objectives of workouts, in general, are the preservation of health and strengthening the body. Suryanamaskar serves both. Apart from these, Suryanamaskar also promotes immunological vigor and vitality and are potentially therapeutic.
It is very useful for increasing will power. The efficiency of body systems—circulatory, respiratory, excretory,
neuroendocrine—is up-regulated. Flexibility goes up due to the stretching of muscles and vessels. All the body cells get abundant oxygen.
The better oxygen supply improves metabolism and rejuvenates the body. Locked joints are opened and joint movements are improved. The mind is calmed down and happiness fountains. Enthusiasm bubbles. Memory and intellect flourish. Eyes, face, and skin get luster. Suryanamaskar is an investment for good health in old age.
Be Prepared for Surya Namaskar
Get up early in the morning, finish morning ablutions, Massage yourself, take shower, and wear space. Be ready to receive rays of rising glory.
How to do Surya Namaskar
Surya Namaskar, also known as the Yoga Sun Salutations, is a series of 12 physical postures. Composed of alternating backward and forward bending postures, one’s a spinal column and the whole body undergoes maximum stretching, flexion, and range.
While performing Suryanamaskar, feel stronger, have nicety, and slowly reach the positions. While breathing inhale fully (Purak), hold (Kumbhak) and exhale completely (Rechak)
- Namaskar position (sthiti)
While performing rechak, stand straight. Look straight. Feet together. Pull in knees, thigh muscles and belly. Expand chest. Fold hands. Palms pressed against each other to perform namaskar.
While performing purak, Raise arms above head. Grow taller. Then bend back. Stretch abdomen.
While performing rechak, bend forward. Don’t bend knees. Go down and touch your toes with your fingertips. Try to touch your knee with your forehead.
While performing purak, take right leg back and stretch it while balancing it on the toe and keep left leg folded in front of your chest. Keep palms straight on both sides of the left foot on the ground. Look up.
While performing rechak, take back the left leg as well and keep both the feet together while raising hip from the ground and balancing on all fours.
While performing Kumbhak, slowly come down and rest palms next to your shoulders, knees touching the ground but the waist and hip slightly raised above so that they don’t touch the ground.
While performing Purak, lower waist and raise torso, make arms straight and balance. Feel bend of spine and stretch of the abdomen.
Same as position 6
Same as position 5
Same as position 4
Same as position 3
- Namaskar position
Same as position 2
Here are some of the health benefits of the 12 physical positions of Surya Namaskar
- Poses 1 and 12– regulates the respiratory system, promotes balance, and exercises the shoulder, back, and neck muscles.
- Poses 2 and 11 – promotes digestion, balance, flexibility, in back and hips while exercising the arms and shoulders.
- Pose 3 and 10– promotes blood circulation, stimulates spinal nerves, and lymphatic system, while stretching back and leg muscles.
- Poses 4 and 9 – this strengthens both hand and wrist muscles while exercising the spine.
- Poses 5 and 8 – relieves tension in neck and shoulders, strengthens the heart, wrist, and arms while stimulates blood circulation.
- Pose 6 – increases the flexibility of the neck, shoulders, arms, and back, thus strengthening them.
- Pose 7 – stretches and promotes flexibility to the upper and lower body including back and nerves in the spine while tones digestive tract and stimulating circulation to abdominal organs.
Benefits of Surya Namaskar
We inhale and exhale maximum air while performing Suryanamaskar. This is known as Pranayam. We supply almost 5 to 6 times more oxygen while performing Suryanamaskar. Naturally, all the cells in the body are rejuvenated.
The breathing performed during Suryanamaskar is rhythmic. When breathing gets rhythmic all body processes also get rhythmic.
We don’t have voluntary control on all the body processes in the body. However, Suryanamaskar provides natural functioning of the body processes thereby providing health benefits and indirect control on the processes.
Benefits to body systems
Suryanamaskar improves the coordination of the body.
All the blood vessels are stretched and develop elasticity. Position 1, 2, 3 and 5 of Suryanamaskar are beneficial for the heart. As heart and vessels are healthy, circulation responds to needs.
Position 1, 2 and 5 of Surya Namaskar provides elasticity to lungs and improves lung capacity. Circulation becomes efficient due to better oxygenation of blood,.
Digestive and excretory system
Positions 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 provide exercise to stomach, intestine, pancreas, and spleen. This helps in the improvement of digestion and excretion.
Position 3 and 5 improves blood supply to the brain. Spine and neck get exercise in almost all the positions of suryanamaskar. Thus the normal function of the nervous system is maintained. Neurotransmission improves with response to a stimulus. The mind becomes peaceful and happy. Enthusiasm increases. Intellect and memory are stimulated.
The position of 3 and 5 provide oxygenated blood to pituitary glands in the head. Position 3,6 and 7 provide a better supply of blood to thyroid gland located in the neck. These glands are important in body metabolism. Particularly, glands located in the head region controls most of the metabolic activities in the body. The hormones are secreted optimally.
Position 3 and 5 improves circulation in all the sense organs.
Other body systems
Muscles get stretched and become flexible and their capacity to work increases. All cells metabolism is monitored. Metabolic activities could be brought under control of will power. Cells are rejuvenated and joints are exercised and move with full range.
Things to remember
- Before exercising the sequence of Suryanamaskar, individual positions could be practiced independently.
- Once confidence is developed then full sequence could be exercised. Thereafter Surya namaskar should be synchronized with breathing.
- Initially, a few cycles could be performed.
- Gradually, a number of cycles could be increased by one or two.
- Try to achieve 24 cycles per day in the first month. This number is good enough to keep you healthy. You can have more cycles to build strength in multiples of twelve. 60, 108, 300 and 600 are numbers to be achieved for those who want to be exceptional. An ordinary person should aim at good health and should not exceed 60 or 108.
- Namaskar should be performed in such a way that one should be able to work after 2-3 minutes pause or relaxation. One should not get tired. Speed should be such that it should not hinder the completion of pranayama or position. Normally, not more than 2 namaskar cycles to be performed in a minute.
- Namaskar should be performed in such a way that one should be able to work after 2-3 minutes pause or relaxation. One should not get tired. Speed should be such that it should not hinder the completion of pranayama or position. Normally, not more than 2 namaskar cycles to be performed in a minute. The importance is given to proper positions and control of breathing.
- Health is the basis of happiness and bliss. It is the most valuable matter in life. Hence one should not reduce efforts in maintaining health. The excuse of time should not be given. Else, one could spend more time in dispensaries and hospitals.
- Suryanamaskar is a holistic exercise. Researchers in Suryanamaskar are rare species but research could be performed in the following areas:
- Personality development
- Patience building
- Confidence building
- Facilitating mentally handicapped
- Rectifying inborn errors
- Stress relief
- Allergy prevention and treatment
- Sexual perversion
- Capacity to play sports
- Facing adverse circumstances
- Overcoming depression
Hope you will include Suryanamaskar in your daily routine.