The beauty of Sun Salutation

One of the very few things I was taught on when I attended the beginner yoga class was Sun Salutation. I remembered my first encounter with them was a love and hate relationship. What I love about them is it helps me to stretch my spinal column with the backward and forward bending posture, work on my flexibility and tone my body. The hating part is it makes me sweat and pant (a lot) if we do it in a fast manner. Can you imagine someone who never really exercise before have to go through this? I GUESS in general, the things we dislike apparently is good for us. However as time goes by, with my stamina built up, I am looking forward to having my class start with this warm up .In fact with some variation thrown in, it can be quite fun..

So what exactly is Sun Salutation? It is also known as Surya Namaskar in Sanskrit which is made up of 12 different postures. It is done together with various breathing exercise and mediation techniques and is best practise at sun rise, facing the rising sun on an empty stomach.

Other than it being a good workout, there are many other benefits if you practise them regularly. However Sun Salutation is not suitable for everyone therefore it best to practise with an experience yoga teacher and consult doctor if you have any medical issues.

List of benefits

-Strengthens abdominal muscles

-Promotes sleep and calms anxiety

-Help reduce fat

-Eliminate unpleasant smells from body

-In women, stimulates the breast to help firnmess normally. Restores any lost elasticilty through, through stimulation of glands and the strengthening of pectoral muscles.

-Improve memory

-Menstrual irregularity and assists in easy childbirth

Who should NOT do Surya Namaskar

-Pregnant women after third month of pregnancy

-Woman during menses

– Patients of Hernia and high pressure

 

Below is a general guide if you are new to Sun Salutation. This is the eight basic postures, in order of performance.

– Tadasana (Mountain pose)

– Urdhva Hastasana (Upward Salute)

– Uttanasana (Standing Forward Bend)

– Lunge – Plank pose

– Chaturanga Dandasana (Four limbed staff pose)

– Urdhva Mukha Svanasana (Upward facing dog pose)

– Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward facing dog pose)

Give it a try and enjoy the beauty of Sun Salutation.

Namasta!

References

More health benefits http://mineyoga.blogspot.sg/

Illustrated step by step Sun Salutation – http://yoga.about.com/od/yogasequences/ss/sunsalutesteps_9.htm

Carol Kuek from July to Oct 2013 200 hrs weekend