Suryanamaskar and It’s Variations: Did you know about them?
Anyone who is a fitness enthusiast would have encountered the term ‘Suryanamskar’ at least once in their lifetime. It is one of the most important practices of yoga. It is a set of 12 yoga poses that can be performed while chanting 12 different mantras. These mantras are supposed to add a spiritual element to the practice.
While the literal translation of Surya Namaskar stands as “Eternal Salutations to the Sun.” The regular practice of Surya Namaskar is known to awaken the body’s intelligence to create energy directly from the sun. Surya Namaskar is also referred to as ‘Sun Salutation’ in English.
There are so many different benefits of Surya Namaskar. One of them being – a primary benefit which also strengthens our entire body. It is also known to stimulate our nervous system including the brain, lower plexus, and spinal cord. Being a natural remedy for blood pressure and patients of heart diseases, it also keeps the sugar levels in check. But as the Surya Namaskar is based on 12 yoga poses, all these poses cannot be performed by all the students.
* cue in * Pose Variation.
They can help you to grow and build confidence in your practice no matter what your starting abilities are. It is also easier for you to get the maximum benefits out of these variations are they are a direct variation to Sun Salutation. I am listing some of the easier variations of Sun Salutation for you to perform.
- Sun Salutation Variation Sitting On Chair
This variation, in a sitting position, can help you to boost energy in your body. Hence it’s included in flow yoga sequences. This variation is a warm-up yoga pose to prepare your body for more intense yoga flow. Sun Salutation Variation Sitting on Chair additionally involves stretching, forward bend, and, back-bend. This is a very good option for senior citizens who need therapy for depression.
- Sun Salutation Variation Standing In Front Of Chair
This is an excellent variation choice for those with a back problem. It involves a chair that you hold on to, for accessing support and you keep it in front of you. This would be beneficial for your hamstrings, arms, and shoulders. The variation of Sun Salutation would help you to not pull your back muscles and will also likely to help you in recovering the back injury.
- Sun Salutation Variation Quick Flow
It involves Back-Bend, Inversion, and Strength to do this variation smoothly. It is known as a Quick Flow variation because it only involves five poses. There are multiple ways through which you can do this variation as it is found in these pre-existing yoga poses – Hip Opening Yoga Sequences, and Heart Opening Yoga Sequences.
- Seated Sun Salutation Variations
Beginning with Varjarsana, also known as the Thunderbolt Pose, this variation is likely to help your Core, Lower Back, Quadriceps, and Neck Muscles. This involves additional back-bend, stretch, strength, and balance. It is also known as Upavistha Surya Namaskar in Sanskrit.
- Kneeling Sun Salutation Sequence
It is a combination of Upward Facing Dog Pose Flow which stretches the chest and spine and Kneeling Cat Swan Flow which warms up the complete body and mind by removing the stiffness. It can be practiced by those who find Surya Namaskar challenging on the shoulders and arms. It can even be performed by those who want to mix things up a bit. The different combinations of these movements can be really helpful in learning different movements of the spine and even the breathing patterns.
- Egyptian Sun Salutation Sequence
It is a beginner level yoga pose that is to be performed in a standing position. It is known to be a good stretching exercise that expands your chest and rib cage, making it more flexible and free. It gets smoother with practice. One of the benefits of this variation is that if you can do this in a smooth flow, it will help you to generate energy. It looks like an elegant yoga dance, once you start following the steps.
First recorded in the early 20th Century, Surya Namaskar still holds the test of time. But, if you feel that you’ve out-performed your limit to do the same pose over and over again – you can highly consider these alternatives to switch it up creatively.
Omkar Kulkarni is a self-proclaimed art appreciator, a certified film reviewer and someone’s favorite human being.