Surya Namaskar: A Complete Workout!

Staying at home for such a long period in lockdown has made us all lazy and unhealthy. It is a difficult time for all of us. A workout is the best activity to overcome laziness and also to keep ourselves healthy. And when we talk about a workout, the best and complete workout is ‘Surya Namaskar’. In this pandemic, if we are avoiding to go to public places such as gyms, parks, or gardens for our workout, then “Surya Namaskar” is the perfect option for all of us.
Surya Namaskar is also called The Ultimate Asana. It is the combination of twelve yoga postures. It should be done facing the early morning sun with an empty stomach. It is a great cardiovascular workout and also has a tremendous positive impact on our body and mind. Besides good health, Surya Namaskar also provides an opportunity to express our gratitude and devotion to the sun for sustaining life on earth. So, Do you know the benefits of Surya Namaskar? Or Why is it called the ultimate asana? Or What is the name of twelve postures and what are its advantages individually? Or What is the reason we should do Surya Namaskar every day? If not, then let us find out the answer to these questions.
Surya Namaskar Steps/ Positions -
There are twelve different steps that make Surya namaskar. Every step in Surya Namaskar has a different yoga posture. So let us look into the different positions and the benefits of each position in Surya Namaskar.

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Position 1 -
Pranamasana (Prayer Pose)

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In this position, we have to join our hands at the center of our chest and keep our feet together, as we do while praying and we should look straight with a straight neck. The position particularly helps to maintain the balance of our body.
Position 2-
Hastauttanasana (Raised arms pose)

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Continuing the first position, we have to raise our hands in the prayer position straight above our head and bend slightly backward without bending our elbows. This position strengths our chest muscles which thereby helps in breathing.
Positon 3 -
Hastapadasana (Standing Forward Bend Pose)

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Continuing the second position, we have to bring our hands forward, bend down, and try to keep our hands besides our legs. This position will help us to make our waist and spine flexible and is also beneficial for our lungs as well as the functioning of our liver.
Position 4 - 
Ashwa Sanchalanasana (Equestrian Pose)

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In this position, we have to sit down and take our right leg backward in the stretching position whereas the left leg should bend at the knee. This position helps in making our neck and spine muscles flexible and also strengths our leg muscles.
Position5 -
Dandasana (stick pose)

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In this position, we have to take our left leg backward and keep our legs and knees in line. We should keep in mind that our whole body weight should be in our arms and hands. This position helps in maintaining our body postures and also strengthens arms and our hands.
Positon 6 -

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Ashtanga Asana (Salute with eight points Pose)
In this position, we have to gently bring our body down and exhale. The eight organs include - Both palms, Both toes, both knees, chest, and forehead should touch the ground. This position strengths our muscles and helps us in making pour spine and waist flexible.
Postion 7-
Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose)

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In this position, we have to lift our body above our waist and bend slightly backward. We have to make sure that our toes and thighs should touch the ground. This position helps to reduce the fat around the abdominal waist and make sour muscles more flexible.
Position 8 -
Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward-facing Dog Pose)

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In this position, we have to lift our waist upwards and stretch our arms with our palms and legs on the ground. This position is very beneficial for our spine and waist muscles.

Position 9 -
Ashwa Sanchalanasana (Equestrian pose)

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In this position, while breathing in we have to bring our right leg forward and bend it down while the left leg should be stretched backward. We have to try and press our hips and lookup while doing it. This position again helps in making our spine and neck muscles flexible.
Position 10 -
Hastapadasana (Standing forward bend)

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In this position, we have to bring our feet together, while breathing out and also keep the palms on the floor and try not to bend our knees if possible.
Position 11 -
Hasttautanasana (Raised Arms Pose)

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In this position, while breathing in we have to roll up our spine and bend backward by pushing our hips slightly backward.
Position 12 -
Tadasana ( Mountain Pose)

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In this position, as we exhale we have to first straighten our body and then bring our arms our down. We have to relax in this position and try to analyze the sensations of our bodies.
These were the twelve poses and benefits of Surya namaskar. It is one of the best workouts which we must include in our daily life routine. There are various advantages of Surya namaskar such as - improves the blood circulation of our body, promotes regular menstrual cycle, helps to overcome anxiety, and also benefits our skin and hair. There is a famous quote by ‘S.Ajna’ that -
“The sun is the daily reminder that we too can rise again from the darkness,
that we too can shine our own light.”
So, lets start our day by doing a Surya Namaskar!
- Moulshree Sarwate