Sun Salutation or Surya Namaskar is a perfect yoga workout. It is a sequence of asanas, which is composed of 12 dynamic yoga poses. Sun Salutation is the best way to do cardiovascular workout, it is best done early morning and is a great way to keep your body in shape and mind at peace. Here are Sun Salutation Steps for your better understanding.
1.Pranamasana (Prayer Pose)
Stand straight and keep your feet together. Put equal body weight on both feet and then bring your hands at the chest level in a prayer position. Open your chest and relax your shoulders and breathe in. This asana is done in the beginning and at the end of sun salutation. The pose gives you relaxation and improves concentration.
2.Hasta Uttanasana (Raised Arms Yoga Pose)
Maintain the same pose, inhale and then lift up your arms. Your biceps should be close to your ears. Then stretch your body. The pose improves digestion, tones abdomen muscles and increases the lung capacity.
3.Hastapadasana ( Standing Forward Bend Pose or Hand To Foot Pose)
Exhale and bend forward your upper body, while keeping your spine straight. Bring down your hands completely beside your feet. Slowly, make an effort to straighten your knees and keep the hands in the same position. The pose stretches the back muscles of the body, tones abdominal organs, strengthens the nervous system and increases blood supply.
4.Ashwa Sanchalanasana (The Equestrian Pose)
Inhale and take the left leg to the back. Now bend your right knee without changing its position. Keep your hands straight and fingers should touch the floor. Now slowly look up and tilt your neck backward. Your left foot should be exactly between your palms. This asana benefits the nervous system, tones abdominal organs and makes leg muscles flexible.
5.Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward Facing Dog)
Exhale and take your right leg back, lift your hips, straighten the knees and elbows, and form an inverted V with your body. Keep your body in a straight line. The pose helps to calm the mind, relieves stress, strengthens arms and legs, fights mild depression, improves digestion, helps to relieve a headache, back pain, fatigue, etc. to name a few.
6.Ashtanga Namaskara (Eight Limbed Salutation)
For this pose, you have to slowly bring down your knees on the floor and exhale. Your eight parts should touch the floor- feet, knees, palms, chest, and chin. Now, slightly raise your hips and abdomen. The asana strengthens the chest and the muscles of hands and legs.
7.Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose)
Lie straight on your stomach and place your hand on the side, your toes should touch each other. Move your hands in front to shoulder level and should be parallel to each other. Now put your body weight on your palms, breathe in and raise your head upwards. Arch your neck backward and replicate the cobra. The pose is good for headaches and back injuries.
8.Parvatasana (Mountain Pose)
Exhale and raise your hips and tailbone, your chest should be downwards, heels on the ground, and body should create an inverted V. It strengthens muscles of thighs, knees and ankle, increases strength, relieves sciatica, improves blood circulation, improves body posture, reduces respiratory issues, etc. to name a few. The pose is similar to step 5.
9.Ashwa Sanchalanasana (The Equestrian Pose)
Breathe in and bring your left foot forward and place it in between your hands, and then bring your left knee down to the floor. Press your hips down and bring your face upward. The step is similar to step 4, except this one is with the other leg.
10.Hastapadasana (Standing Forward Bend Pose or Hand To Foot Pose)
Exhale and bend down your upper body, keep palms on the ground. You can bend your knees if feeling any discomfort, otherwise, try to keep them straight. The step is similar to step 3.
11.Hasta Uttanasana (Raised Arms Yoga Pose)
Inhale while rolling up your spine and let your hands go up. Then bend a little towards the back and push your hips slightly out. The step is similar to step 2.
12.Tadasana (Standing Mountain Pose)
For performing the last step of sunrise salutation yoga, exhale and straighten your body. Bring your arms down and stand in a relaxed position.
Surya Namaskar Mantra recites- For those who salute the sun every day, life expectancy, conscious, vital power, strength, and courage shall grow.
Practice this sun salutation sequence for lifetime benefits.