Soorya Namaskar (Sun Exercise)

            This Exercise is called Soorya namaskar because it is practised in the early morning facing the sun. The sun is considered to be the deity for health and long life. One should practice this at least twelve times by repeating twelve names of Lord Sun. This exercise is a combined process of Yoga asanas and breathing. The benefits of Soorya Namaskar includes reduces abdominal fat, brings flexibility to the spine and limbs, and increases breathing capacity. It is easier to practice asanas after doing Soorya namaskar.

            The rule of Soorya Namaskar is, Before anyone practices the more complicated and difficult postures, the spine should acquire some flexibility. For a stiff person, the sun exercise is a boon to bring back lost flexibility

            There are 12 spinal positions, each stretching various ligaments and giving different movements to the vertebral column. The Vertebral column is bent forward and backward alternatively with deep breathing. Whenever the body is bent forward, the contraction of the abdomen and diaphragm throws out the breath. When the body bends backward, the chest expands and deep breathing occurs automatically. By doing this flexibility increases  and breathing is corrected. In addition, It mildly exercises the legs and arms, this increasing the circulation.

            The Twelve Position of Soorya Namaskar should be done in a day at least 6 Namaskar daily and below are the way to perform.

Follow from 1 to 12

Position One

  • Face the Sun.
  • Fold the hands.
  • Legs together, stand erect.
  • Position Two
  • Inhale and raise the arms and bend backwards.
  • Position Three
  • Exhale and bend forward till the hands are in line with the feet.
  • Touch the knees with your head. (In the beginning, the knees may be slightly bent until the head can touch them, After some Practice, the knees should be straightened).
  • Position Four
  • Inhale and move the right leg away from the body in a big backward step.
  • Keep the hands and left foot firmly on the ground, bending the head backwards.
  • The left knee should be between the hands.
  • Position Five
  • Inhale and hold the breath.
  • Move the left leg from the body and keeping both feet together and the knees off the floor, rest on the hands (arms straight) and keep the body in a straight line from head to foot.
  • Position Six
  • Exhale and lower the body to the floor.
  • It is also called eight- curved prostration, only 8 portions of the body come in contact with the floor. Two feet, knees, chest and forehead.
  • The abdominal region is raised and if possible the nose is also kept off the floor, the forehead only touching it.
  • Position Seven
  • Inhale and bend backwards as much as possible, bending the spine to the maximum.
  • Position Eight
  • Exhale and lift the body.
  • Keep the feet and heels flat on the floor.
  • Position Nine
  • Inhale and bring the right foot along the level of the hands.
  • The left foot and knee should touch the ground. Look up, Bend the spine slightly.
  1. Position Ten
  • Exhale and bring the left leg forward.
  • Keeps the knees straight and bring the head down to the knees as in the third position.        
  1. Position eleven
  • Raise the arms overhead and bend backward inhaling as like position two.
  1. Position Twelve
  • Exhale, Drop the arms and relax.

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