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Technique 

Step 1 Pranamasana (Prayer pose)

  • Stand at the edge of your mat, keep your feet together and balance your weight equally on both the feet. Expand your chest and relax your shoulders.
  • As you breathe in, lift both arms up from the sides and as you exhale, bring your palms together in front of the chest in prayer position.

Step 2 Hasta Utthanasana (Raised Arms pose)

  • Breathing in, lift the arms up and back, keeping the biceps close to the ears.
  • In this pose, the objective is to stretch the whole body up from the heels to the tips of the fingers.

Step 3 Padhastasana (Hand to Foot pose)

  • Breathing out, bend forward from the waist, keeping the spine erect.
  • As you exhale completely, bring the hands down to the floor, beside the feet

Step 4 Ashwa Sanchalanasana (Equestrian pose)

  • Inhale slowly and extend the right leg back and drop the knee to the ground.
  • Bend the left knee and hands should be firm with the ground and look up.

Step 5 Santolanasana (Inner Equanimity pose)

  • Keep the hands and right foot still, and take the left foot back besides the right foot so that the
  • Keep the body parallel to the floor by strengthening the abs muscles.
  • The legs and arms straighten and the heels come down towards the floor.
  • Bring the head and shoulders towards the knees.

Step 6 Ashtanga Namaskara (Salute with eight points)

  • Gently bring your knees down to the floor and exhale.
  • Take the hips back slightly, slide forward, rest your chest and chin on the floor.
  • Raise your posterior a little bit .
  • The two hands, two feet, two knees, chest and chin (eight parts of the body) should touch the floor.

Step 7 Bhujangasana (Cobra pose)

  • Slide forward and raise the chest up into the cobra posture.
  • You may keep your elbows bent in this pose, the shoulders away from the ears. Look up.
  • As you inhale, make a gentle effort to push the chest forward; as you exhale, make a gentle effort to push the navel down.
  • Ensure you’re stretching just as much as you can; do not force.

Step 8 Parvatasana (Mountain pose)

  • Breathing out, lift the hips and the tail bone up, chest downwards in an ‘inverted V (/\) posture.
  • If possible, try and keep the heels on the ground and make a gentle effort to lift the tailbone up, going deeper into the stretch.

Step 9 Ashwa Sanchalanasana (Equestrian pose)

 

  • Breathing in, bring the right foot forward in between the two hands, left knee down to the floor, press the hips down and look up and place the right foot exactly between the two hands and the right calf perpendicular to the floor.
  • In this position, make a gentle effort to push the hips down towards the floor, to deepen the stretch.

Step 10 Padahastasana (Hand to foot pose)

  • Breathing out, bring the left foot forward. Keep the palms on the floor.
  • You may bend the knees, if necessary.
  • Gently straighten the knees and if you can, try and touch your nose to the knees. Keep breathing.

Step 11 Hasta Utthanasana (Raised Arms pose)

 

  • Breathing in, roll the spine up, hands go up and bend backwards a little bit, pushing the hips slightly outward.
  • Ensure that your biceps are beside your ears. The idea is to stretch up more rather than stretching backwards.

Step 12 Pranamasana (prayer pose)

 

  • As you exhale, first straighten the body, and then bring the arms down.
  • Relax in this position; observe the sensations in your body.

Benefits

  • Surya Namaskar not only provides physical health benefits, but also mental or emotional as well as spiritual benefits.
  • It is good for the heart and stimulates the cardiovascular system.
  • Surya Namaskar is good for the digestive system and the nervous system. It stimulates the lymphatic system and supports respiratory system health, as well.
  • Practicing Surya Namaskar also benefits the endocrine system and enables the various endocrine glands to function properly. These include the thyroid, parathyroid and pituitary glands as well as the adrenal gland, testes and ovaries.
  • It is an excellent way to manage stress and alleviate depression.
  • Surya Namaskar teaches you to concentrate 

A Word of Caution 

  • Pregnant women should not practice.
  • Those suffering from high blood pressure and hernia should not practice.
  • Those suffering from back pain should take expert guidance.
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