Thursday, June 18, 2015

Surya Namaskar: 12 Yoga poses for weight loss

Surya Namaskar: 12 Yoga poses for weight loss

Surya Namaskar: 12 Yoga poses for weight loss (Thinkstock photos/Getty Images)
Sun Salutation is considered a complete body workout. Yogaexperts say that doing 12 sets of Surya Namaskar translates into doing 288 powerful yoga poses in a span of 12 to 15 minutes.

A workout for 'busy bees'

Facing a time crunch? Want to feel fit but don't know how? Welcome to the world of Surya Namaskar. Literally translated as sun salutation, Surya Namaskar comprises a sequence of 12 yoga postures. The best part about Sun Salutation is that it works well for those 'super busy' people who often complain about not being able to do yoga because of a time crunch. Doing at least 12 sets of Sun Salutation, preferably at sunrise, at a fast pace provides a good cardiovascular workout. If done at a slower pace, these postures help tone the muscles and can be relaxing and meditative. Moreover, it allows you to enjoy the stretch and makes the body more flexible.

Though pretty much an exercise in itself, Sun Salutation forms an excellent link between warm-ups and intense yoga postures. Start your early morning yoga routine with some warm-up stretches to ease out body stiffness. You can then do a few rounds of Sun Salutation to help increase body flexibility and also prepare the body to stretch more during the intense yoga posture sequence.

Sun Salutation is considered a complete body workout. Yoga experts say that doing 12 sets of Surya Namaskar translates into doing 288 powerful yoga poses in a span of 12 to 15 minutes.

Why Sun Salutation is good for you?

But that's not all. Regular practice of Sun Salutation offers a lot of interesting benefits for every part of the body. These powerful yoga poses have a great impact on the heart, liver, intestine, stomach, chest, throat, and legs - the whole body from top to bottom. It purifies the blood and improves blood circulation throughout the body and ensures proper functioning of the stomach, bowel, and nerve centres. Practicing Sun Salutation daily helps balance the three constitutions - Vata, Pitta and Kapha - that the body is made up of.

Your guide to Sun Salutations

Step #1: Pranamasana (Prayer pose)

Stand at the edge of your mat, keep your feet together and balance your weight equally on both the feet.

Expand your chest and relax your shoulders.

As you breathe in, lift both your arms up from the sides and as you exhale, bring your palms together in front of the chest in a prayer position.

Step #2: Hastauttanasana (Raised arms pose)

Breathing in, lift the arms up and back, keeping the biceps close to the ears. In this pose, the effort is to stretch the whole body up from the heels to the tips of the fingers.

How to deepen this yoga stretch?

You may push the pelvis forward a little bit. Ensure you're reaching up with the fingers rather than trying to bend backwards.

Step #3: Hasta Padasana (Hand to foot pose)

Breathing out, bend forward from the waist, keeping the spine erect. As you exhale completely, bring the hands down to the floor, beside the feet.

How to deepen this yoga stretch?

You may bend the knees, if necessary, to bring the palms down to the floor. Now make a gentle effort to straighten the knees.

It's a good idea to keep the hands fixed in this position and not move them until you finish the sequence.

Step #4: Ashwa Sanchalanasana (Equestrian pose)

Breathing in, push your right leg back, as far back as possible. Bring the right knee to the floor and look up.

How to deepen this yoga stretch?

Ensure that the left foot is exactly in between the palms.

Step #5: Dandasana (Stick pose)

As you breathe in, take the left leg back and bring the whole body in a straight line.

How to deepen this yoga stretch?

Keep your arms perpendicular to the floor.

Step #6: Ashtanga Namaskara (Salute with eight parts or points)

Gently bring your knees down to the floor and exhale. Take the hips back slightly, slide forward, rest your chest and chin on the floor. Raise your posterior a little bit.

The two hands, two feet, two knees, chest and chin (eight parts of the body touch the floor).

Step #7: Bhujangasana (Cobra pose)

Slide forward and raise the chest up into the Cobra posture.You may keep your elbows bent in this pose, the shoulders away from the ears. Look up.

How to deepen this yoga stretch?

As you inhale, make a gentle effort to push the chest forward; as you exhale, make a gentle effort to push the navel down. Tuck the toes under. Ensure you're stretching just as much as you can; do not force your body.

Step #8: Parvatasana (Mountain pose)

Breathing out, lift the hips and the tail bone up, chest downwards in an 'inverted V' (/) posture.

How to deepen this yoga stretch?

If possible, try and keep the heels on the ground and make a gentle effort to lift the tailbone up, going deeper into the stretch.

Step #9: Ashwa Sanchalanasana (Equestrian pose)

Breathing in, bring the right foot forward in between the two hands, left knee down to the floor, press the hips down and look up.

How to deepen this yoga stretch?

Place the right foot exactly between the two hands and the right calf perpendicular to the floor. In this position, make a gentle effort to push the hips down towards the floor, to deepen the stretch.

Step #10: Hasta Padasana (Hand to foot pose)

Breathing out, bring the left foot forward. Keep the palms on the floor. You may bend the knees, if necessary.

How to deepen this yoga stretch?

Gently straighten the knees and if you can, try and touch your nose to the knees. Keep breathing.

Step #11: Hastauttanasana (Raised arms pose)

Breathing in, roll the spine up, hands go up and bend backwards a little bit, pushing the hips slightly outward.

How to deepen this yoga stretch?

Ensure that your biceps are beside your ears. The idea is to stretch up more rather than stretch backwards.

Step #12: Tadasana

As you exhale, first straighten the body, then bring the arms down. Relax in this position, observe the sensations in your body.

288 yoga poses in 12 minutes!

One round of Sun Salutation consists of 12 yoga poses. One set consists of two rounds of Sun Salutation:first stretching the right side of your body and then the left side. So, when you do 12 sets of Sun Salutation, you are completing 12 sets x 2 rounds in each set x 12 yoga poses in each = 288 yoga poses within 12 to 15 minutes.

Surya Namaskar calorie calculation:

One round of Surya Namaskar burns upto 13.90 calories for an average weighing person. You can now set a target for yourself. You can slowly increase the number of rounds of surya namaskar to 108. By the time you reach this number, you will become more toned and fitter.

30-minutes workout calorie meter: How many calories are you burning in your 30 minute workout?

Weight lifting = 199 calories

Tennis = 232 calories

Basketball = 265 calories

Beach volleyball = 265 calories

Football = 298 calories

Bicycling (14 - 15.9 mph) = 331 calories

Rock climbing = 364 calories

Running (7.5mph) = 414 calories

Surya Namaskar = 417 calories

(Inputs : Sri Sri Yoga teacher, The Art of living)

Read more Personal Health, Diet & Fitness stories on

Yogaasana for International Yoga Day Festival

First International yoga day

21 June 2015  Time period- 33 min.

Part 1 (2 min)
"संगच्छध्वम संवद्यध्वम, संवो मनासी जानताम् ।
देवाभागम् यथा पूर्वे, संजानाना उपासते ।।"

Part 2 (3 min) 
Warming up
(For relextion)

Neck rotation
Shoulder rotation
Hip rotation
Knee rotation

Part 3 (15 min)

A) Yogasan in standing position

1) Tadasan ताड़ासन
2) Vrukshasan वृक्षासन
3) Pad Hastsan पादहस्तासन
4) Ardhchakrasan अर्धचक्रासन
5) Trikonasan त्रिकोणासन

B) Yogasan in seating position

1) Bhadrasan भद्रासन
2) Shashankasan शशांकासन
3) Ardh ushtrasan अर्धउष्ट्रासन
4) Vkrasan वक्रासन

C) Yogasan in sleeping position (on stomach)

1) Bhujangasan भुजंगासन
2) Shalbhasan शलभासन
3) Makrasan मकरासन

D) Yogasan in sleeping position

1) Setu bandh sarvangasan सेतुबंध सर्वांगसन
2) Pawan muktasan पवन मुक्तासन
3) Shwasan शवासन

Part 4 (2 min)

Kapalbhati कपालभाति
(10-12 strocks in 3 round)

Part 5 (5 min)

Pranayaam प्राणायाम
1) Nadishodhan नाडीशोधन (5 round)
2) bhramari Pranayaam भ्रामरी प्राणायाम (5 round)

Part 6 (6 min)

Seat in any kind of Dhyan mudra 

(शांभवी मुद्रा, आँखे बंद और हातों की ज्ञान मुद्रा ।)

At the time of Meditation play melodies background music.

Lastly take Sankalp

" हमें हमारे मन को हमेशा संतुलित रखना है। इसीमेही हमारा आत्मविकास समाया हुआ है। विश्व की ऐक्यता के लिये, स्वास्थ के लिये और शांतता के वृद्धि के लिये, विश्व के प्रति, समाज के प्रति, मेरे काम के प्रति, मेरे परिवार के प्रति और मेरे खुद केn प्रति जो कर्तव्य है मैं उन्हें पूरा करने का निश्चय करता हूँ।
Dear Citizens

Forward this msg to a minimum of twenty people on your contact list; and in turn ask each of them to do likewise.

In three days, most people in India will have this message.
This is one idea that really should be passed around.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Healthy Ways To Grow Taller With Yoga

Healthy Ways To Grow Taller With Yoga

February 7th, 2011
yin yoga teacher training for skeletal healthBy Faye Martins
It has been said that doing yoga makes someone taller. What causes someone to become taller has to do with the span of the bones, but performing yoga cannot lengthen bones.  Although performing yoga to become taller appears to be a probability, this is usually not because you have added a couple of inches of bones. While performing particular yoga positions that help straighten and lengthen your spine, it would ultimately correctly and align your figure. This, in turn, will almost certainly make you look taller.
Yoga Makes You Grow Taller – Fact or Fiction 
Yoga positions urge your body to extend and elongate. Yoga will cause you to become more mindful of your form – how you stand and take a seat innately, and if you slouch when you. This will cause you to walk more upright, producing the impression that you are taller.  Following a small number of yoga classes, you’ll discover that your stance will have developed and the aligning of your upper body feels like you’ve added an inch or so.
Individuals have stated they’ve added up to three inches of height completing yoga to become taller. This is typically grounded on the concept that if you observe yoga positions that center on elongating, you’ll quickly perceive a growth and sculpting of your back muscles. There will be a measured toughening, solidifying, and decompression of the spine. It is thought to make you look taller.
The Importance of Good Posture
If you want better posture, there is no harm in trying yoga. It is not merely beneficial for your physical health, but likewise for your psychological and emotional health. However, if you already engage in Pilates and additional methods of stretching on a consistent basis, your stance would almost certainly be at its greatest. Consequently, performing yoga to become taller might not make much of a variance for you.
If you are motivated by the probability of additional inches, keep in mind that you must observe yoga on a everyday basis in order to actually perceive a change in height. Certain straightforward sit up yoga positions that might help are the dog and cat positions, which both work on the spine and improve the lower back.
When starting any new exercise regime, remember to start out slow and do more as you progress. Drink plenty of water throughout the course of your workout. Breathe in and out in steady, even breaths throughout your whole fitness routine.
Yoga Exercises to Gain Height
Practitioners benefit from the complementary practices of yoga and Ayurveda in many ways, some expected and some not. In addition to gentle strengthening, rehabilitation, as well as, the serenity of regular mental cleansing and stress reduction some people are surprised to find that yoga can actually make them taller.
Stretch and Stand Tall
It would be hard to find an adult that doesn’t know that we shrink in stature as we age. It might be even harder to find one who asks ‘why.’ Television advertising captures the attention of its viewers daily with passive solutions like inverted hanging. Since passive methods are at best temporary, yoga practitioners rightly don an inner smile, content with the knowledge that they are either not shrinking at all, or shrinking much less, than people of similar age.
Elements of Height
It is important to draw one key distinction before continuing. Most people achieve a healthy, youthful maximum height sometime in their teens. Others do not. By correcting deficiencies and weakness, some of those in the latter category may stand taller than before. The rest are more likely to maintain or restore that healthy look of balanced, proper alignment that they remember from their youth.
That said there are two main causes for loss of stature, joint/spinal compression, and pelvic tilt/spinal curvature. Obesity may be a factor in either. Poor diet contributes to the deterioration and rigidity of vertebral disks, as well. Yoga instructors and experienced practitioners understand and act on the need for both a healthy diet, and the maintenance of a healthy weight, beginners less so.
Long-Term Care
Unless they act to counteract the effects of gravity, people who sit or stand shrink naturally throughout the day. Vertebral disks are about 88% water and the wearing of the day compresses them. As long as the disks stay flexible, they re-hydrate when we sleep. That makes people taller in the morning, but they could stay taller all the time with a daily routine of gentle yoga positions targeting the spine including cat and dog, and cobra poses.
Likewise, an unbalanced pelvic tilt not only decreases stature, it puts pressure on the hip joints, shortens the stride, and alters walking gait for otherwise healthy seniors. According to a joint study conducted by University of Virginia Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, and the Charlottesville, VA Center for the Study of Complementary and Alternative Therapies in 2005, an 8-week program of two 90-minute sessions of Iyengar Hatha yoga plus twenty minutes of home-based reinforcement on alternate days significantly improved hip extension, stride length and pelvic tilt. Uncorrected, each increases the risk of falls, loss of independence, and mortality, so it’s well worth the minor effort to prevent problems, even if you don’t get any calls from the NBA.
© Copyright 2013 – Aura Wellness Center – Publications Division
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Surya Namaskar is an integrated and complete Bharatiya exercise. It not only encompasses the fitness of limbs, muscles and internal organs of the body but also promotes mental and spiritual development. The original significance behind Surya Namaskar is obeisance to the Sun God, the giver of light and warmth and on whose radiant presence is dependant all life on earth. This physical exercise is becoming increasingly popular in Bharat. It is easy to perform and can be carried out anywhere and by both men and women of any age.It is generally practised in early morning on empty stomach facing the sun, after abulation.
Wear loose and light clothes and practice on a clean and firm surface. Follow the correct technique and exercise within the limits of your strength, stamina and suppleness. Cultivate the habit of accuracy and regularity. For optimum bebefit mantra should be repeated either verbally or mentally before the start of each round of the exercise. Each round comprises of ten (or twelve) positions, each of which is a separate Asana itself. 
Starting position (Sthiti) Namaskarasana: This is the normal standing position. Face the sun standing upright, legs together and palms joined together in the traditional Hindu way of greeting-Namaste.
  1. Urddhwa Namaskarasana:
    Inhale deeply (Poorak) and raise the hands above the head as far as you can bending backwards. After practice this position should resemble a semi circle. Keep the feet firm on ground without bending the knees.
  2. Hastapadasana:
    Exhale (Rechak) and bend forward. Try to touch the floor ear the feet. Bring the forehead near the knees. Do not bend the legs at the knees.
  3. Eka (Varna) Pada Prasaranasana:
    Inhale (Poorak) and move the left leg away from the body in a long backward step resting it on the toes and the knee. Keep the hands and the right foot firm on the ground in one straight line. Bend the head backward try to look up towards the ceiling.
  4. Dwipada Prasaranasana:
    After inhaling the previous position, hold the breath (Kumbhak). Move the right leg from the body are keeping both feet together and knees off the floor, re on the hands. Keep the body and the arms straight.
  5. Sashtanga Pranipatasana:
    Exhale (Rechak) and lower the body on the ground so that the toes, knees, chest, hands and the forehead, touch the ground. Try to lift the abdomen and hips as high off the floor as possible.
  6. Bhujangasana:
    Inhale (Poorak) and bend backward, Try to straighten the arms. Stretch the neck to its fullest extent.
  7. Bhoodharasana:
    Exhale (Rechak) and raise the body. Bend the head and try to look at the knees. The body should form and inverted “V”. Keep the feet and heels flat on the ground.
  8. Eka (Dakshina) Pada Prasaranasana:
    Inhale (Poorak) and bring the left foot forward along the level of the hands. Rest is same as position No 3.
  9. Hasta Padasana:
    Same as position 2. Exhale (Rechak) and bring forward the right leg. the heels and the big toes touching.
  10. Sthiti-Narnaskarasana:
    Same as the starting position. Hold the breath (Kumbhale. Raise the body in the vertical position and relax.
This finishes one complete Suryanamaskara. In another system a complete Suryanamaskara comprises of 12 positions. There are two additional positions in between the above 4 & 5 and 7 & 8 positions. Knees are bent and rested in the floor without altering the positions of the palms and toes. Forehead is rested on the ground. Inhale while moving backwards and then exhale completely.
Nomenclature of the Asana positions varies in some schools. In position No 3 of the second round of the Suryanamaskara, right-leg should first be moved backward (Dakshina Pada Prasaranasana) and the same be brought forward in position 9, (Vama Pada Prasaranasana). Alternatively, left and right legs be moved first in the subsequent Suryanamaskaras.
Suryanamaskara are dynamic postures which make the body warm. They quicken the blood circulation, tighten the skin and muscles, strengthen the lungs and stimulate the digestive functions. Depression and anxiety can be lifted in just a few minutes by stretching away the tensions which built up in the solar plexus and chest.
This is a set of exercise for one and all, be he a sportsman, a student, a businessman or a housewife. Children also enjoy the easy flowing movements which enhance a general sense of rhythm and natural flexibility.
Meditation or contemplation with the prolonged pronunciation of the Omkar before the Mantras influences and stimulated the nerve centres in the brain corresponding to the respiratory, circulatory and digestive systems, makes them more active, efficient and healthy. Excretory, Reproductive, Nervous and Endrenine systems are also strengthened and stimulated in the Suryanamaskara. The different names of the Sun God according to their meanings instil in the person such qualities as he identifies with the supreme and meditates on those
One routine cycle of Suryanamaskaras consists of 13 Mantras, the thirteenth being, AUM SHRI SAVITRU-SURYANARAYANAYA NAMAH
Salutations to the friend of all
Salutations to the Shining one
Salutations to the one who induces activity
Salutations to the one who illumines
Salutations to the one who moves quickly in the sky
Salutations to the giver of strength
Salutations to the Golden cosmic self
Salutations to the Lord of dawn
Salutations to the son of Aditi
Salutations to the benevolent mother
Salutations to the one who is praiseworthy
Salutations to the one who leads to enlightenment

A number of such cycles depending on the strength and stamina of the person may be performed.There are few persons in Bharat who have completed as many as 10 million for suryanamaskars in their lifetime.
The sequential pronunciation of Bijamantras such as Jram, Hrim, Hrum, Hraim, Hroum and Hrah in between OMKAR and the twelve names of the Sun God has further beneficial effects.
Author : Kanu Gohil
This article was previously published in the souvenir to the Bradford Centenary Hindu Marathon. Bradford, UK. 1997

Benefits of Yoga in our daily lives

Yoga helps us in achieving all-round fitness. The key benefits of yoga are –

Holistic fitness package: Yoga helps with postures, pranayama (breathing techniques) and meditation and is a holistic fitness package.

Weight loss: Sun Salutations and Kapal Bhati pranayama are some ways to help lose weight with yoga. Moreover, regular practice of yoga, help keep a check on weight.

Stress relief: A few minutes of yoga during the day can be a great way to get rid of stress that accumulates daily - in both the body and mind.

Inner peace: Yoga is also one of the best ways to calm a disturbed mind.

Improved immunity: Yoga poses massage organs and strengthen muscles; breathing techniques and meditation release stress and improve immunity.

Living with greater awareness: Yoga and pranayama help create that awareness and bring the mind back to the present moment, where it can stay happy and focused.

Happy Mind: Yoga and meditation work on keeping the mind happy and peaceful.

Increased energy: A few minutes of yoga everyday provides the secret to feeling fresh and energetic even after a long day.

Better flexibility & posture: Regular yoga practice stretches and tones the body muscles and also makes them strong. It also helps improve your body posture when you stand, sit, sleep or walk.

Better intuition: Yoga and meditation have the power to improve your intuitive ability so that you effortlessly realize what needs to be done, when and how, to yield positive results.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Ardha Chakrasana for strengthening spinal nerves,

Practice Ardha Chakrasana for strengthening spinal nerves, neck muscles & better breathing capacity. Another benefit of Ardha Chakrasana is that helps mitigate cervical spondylitis. #YogaDay

Poses for the Heart

Heart openers like Bow Pose and Cobra can help you heal your body, mind, and spirit.

Yoga for beautiful face.