Start to Lose Weight Easily – How to Do Surya Namaskar (Sun Salutation) Daily
POSTED ON June 15, 2015 BY Sonia Nahata
By Soni Nahata
Gaining weight requires no effort, but losing weight is not easy. While there are a number of methods that can be used for losing weight, such as cycling, football, tennis, running etc., one of the easiest and far more effective methods is yoga.
The asana named Surya Namaskar – or Sun Salutation – is known for effectively helping people burn calories and lose weight. However, this particular yoga does more than just scraping off the extra pounds.
Apart from burning calories and helping to lose weight, Surya Namaskar also comes with numerous other benefits, some of which are:
So, if you are interested in losing weight the easier way, here is a brief description of how to do Surya Namaskar in order to get back into shape:
Starting with Surya Namaskar – The Prayer Pose or Pranamasana – Step 1
Pranamasana is the first step of Surya Namaskar asana. It requires standing at the very edge of the yoga mat (if you prefer to use one) with the rest of the mat behind you, with both feet joined together and your entire body weight distributed equally on both feet.
Once the desired standing position is attained, relax shoulders, expand chest and take deep, slow breaths.
With relaxed body and controlled breathing, start lifting your hands from your side when you inhale. Ensure that your palms face the sky as you lift your arms. As you exhale, lower your arms and put your palms together in praying posture in front of your chest.
Raised Arms Pose or the Hasta Uttanasana – Step 2
This pose is a continuation from step 1. With your palms still in prayer position, inhale deeply.
As you inhale, rotate your palms inward with your fingers gradually pointing towards your chest and elbows moving outward. Keep going and the elbows will start moving up and your palms will gradually separate out and move outwards.
As your palms separate completely and reach over your head, keep taking your hands back. Stretch your hands back as much as possible and lean back, forming an arch. Lean back as far as possible, but make sure that you don’t fall back or lose your balance. At this point, you can look behind you.
Hand to Foot Posture or the Hastapadasana – Step 3
From your maximum stretched position at step 2, exhale deeply and start moving forward simultaneously. You will reach the vertical standing position with your hands stretched straight up and fingers pointing towards the sky.
From here, bend your knees slightly while keeping your spine straight and hands still stretched out over your head.
From that position, bend forward from your waist. As you bend, make sure that your spine remains straight. At this point, your upper body should be parallel to the ground with your hands stretched out straight horizontally. This is the table top position.
From this position, bend forward further and put your palms on the ground on either side of your feet. Straighten your legs as much as possible and try to touch your knees with your forehead.
Equestrian Pose or the Ashwa Sanchalanasana – Step 4
With your palms rooted to the ground on either side of the feet, inhale and move your right leg as far back as possible and bring your right knee down onto the ground. Your palms should stay on ground and your left foot should be between your palms.
Look straight up towards the ceiling or sky (if you are doing it in open air). Now exhale deeply.
The Stick Pose or Dandasana – Step 5
As you inhale, deeply apply pressure onto your palms and hands and take your left foot back.
With both of your heels touching, bring your body to a straight line. Ensure that your arms are perpendicular to the ground.
Eight-Point Salutation or the Ashtanga Namaskara – Step 6
From dandasana, exhale and as you breathe out, gently take your knees down to the ground.
Push your hips back up slightly and slide forward down a little and place your chin and chest onto the ground. Your palms should still be in their place (refer to step 3) and push up your hips.
At this stage, only your chin, chest, two palms, two knees and your two feet (8 points) should be touching the floor. Your biceps and elbows should be hugging your rib cage and they should not fan out.
Moving into Cobra Pose or Bhujangasana – Step 7
As you inhale, slide forward with pressure on your palms and hands.
With your feet in position and heels touching each other, put your thighs and pelvis onto the ground and simultaneously push your head and chest up. Keep your elbows slightly bent – still hugging your ribs – and relax your shoulders so that they don’t move in too close to your ears.
The Reverse Dog or Mountain Pose or Parvatasana – Step 8
Exhale and simultaneously push up your hips into the air, lower your head and chest downward with your palms and feet in their original places. This will bring you into the mountain pose, which looks like inverted ‘V’.
Getting Back to Equestrian Pose or Ashwa Sanchalanasana – Step 9
From step 8, inhale and take your right foot forward all the way between your palms.
Lower your left knee gently to the ground and take your hips downward as much as possible. Look straight up towards the ceiling or sky.
Getting Back to Hastapadasana – Step 10
From step 9, exhale and bring forward your left foot and place it between your palms beside your right foot.
In this position, your knees will remain bent, but once you bring back your left foot, gently start straightening your knees. Straighten them as far as possible and try to touch your knees with your forehead or nose.
Getting Back to Hasta Uttanasana – Step 11
From step 10, inhale and start rolling up with your hands stretched straight outward. As you stand up straight (vertically), your hands should be stretched straight up in air.
From there, gradually stretch back as far back as possible while simultaneously trying to push your hips out a bit.
Final Posture – Tadasana – Step 12
Exhale and slowly move back to a vertical position with your hands still stretched up straight in the air.
Once you are in a completely vertical position, bring down your arms from the side and relax. Breathe normally.
These twelve steps make up one complete round of Surya Namaskar. Repeat and complete 2 or 5 or 10 rounds. Each Surya Namaskar round is known to burn 13.90 calories. Advanced practitioners perform up to 108 rounds, but that is at a much later stage.
There are many other benefits associated with Surya Namaskar. It is one of the most complete yoga asanas. Regularly practicing this yoga discards the need for any other physical exercises.
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