Benefits of practicing Surya Namaskars

Regular practice of Surya Namaskars, no doubt will help you trim excess fat from unwanted places and also will elevate your mood. It’s a great relaxation workout. Some of the benefits, I have experienced :

  • Hunger Control – Exercises in particular are effective at controlling hunger. Surya Namaskar in particular is very effective, as the sequence of stretching and bending sequences massages internal digestive organs.
  • Trims waist – One of the best exercises to loose the flab around your waist and hips. This would definitely be a very appealing exercise for women.
  • Younger looking Skin - Continuous sweating during second and third sets of your workout will make your skin look younger. Exercises in general act as detoxifying agents and this in particular works very effectively on detoxification due to heavy and rhythmic breathing (pranayama) involved.
  • Total Body Workout – No other yoga exercise can claim this distinction, as Surya Namaskar is a unique sequence of 10 asanas coupled with Pranayama that stretches and bends your spinal chord like no other. This also combines a few moves of body-weight based toning exercises like – Push-ups and Lunges. 75 Rounds of Surya Namaskars involves – 75 Push-Ups; 150 Lunges (one for right & left leg for each round).

The Workout – Program

Loose weight rapidly by doing Surya Namaskars daily. I don’t know of any weight loss technique that is as effective as this one… Rishis (Ancient Sages) of India formulated Surya Namaskar by combining powerful asthanaga yoga techniques – Asanas and Pranayama. Surya Namaskars are termed in Yogic Literature as “Sarvanga Sundara Asanas” (Total Body Workout)

The basic workout program  revolves around doing a large rounds of Surya Namaskars daily. The following details are how I suggest the workout be structured.

Basic Sequence

Each round of Surya Namaskar comprises a sequence of 10 Asanas accompanied by Rhythmic Breathing

  1. A set of Surya Namaskars would be 12 to 25 rounds of Surya Namaskars (depending on your progression stage)
  2. Perform a Surya Namaskar Set within 6 to 12 minutes, with each round taking approximately 30 seconds to complete
  3. Complete at-least 3 Surya Namaskar Sets daily
  4. Relax for not more than 90 seconds between each set and take no rest between rounds within a set
  5. Relax for 3 – 5 minutes by doing Shavasana at the end of the workout.

Here’s are links that will help you complete one round of Surya Namaskar and Shavasana

I have created a basic workout program, where you can gradually start doing 75 surya namaskars a day. I have divided the workout program into 3 stages, that is depicted below.

The Workout Process

Stage 1 :: Fit for Life

If you have never done any yoga exercises, I would strongly recommend you start at this stage. Try to practice at least 36 rounds of surya namaskars a day, divided into 3 sets of 12 each. Rest for no more than 90 seconds between sets. You may not be able to do an ideal workout, when you are beginning the program. What I mean by an “Ideal” workout is that you may not be able to bend completely, your body not be exactly supple to do the workout as depicted in classical texts.

Ideally this stage should be completed within a period of 2 to 3 weeks. Once you reach your goal state in terms of weight, you could do 36 rounds, slowly and be fit for the rest of your life… The best part is – once your body gets tuned to Surya Namaskars, you can accomplish this stage in less than 20 minutes a day

Won’t you spend 20 minutes a day to be fit for life ?

Stage 2 :: Gradual Weight Loss

Once you are comfortable doing 36 rounds of Surya Namaskars, gradually move to stage 2 where you will need to do 15 rounds at a minimum in a set. At this stage, you should become comfortable practicing 45 rounds every day. I have successfully lost weight rapidly by practicing 45 rounds in the evening along with a very light snack for dinner.

Stage 3 :: Rapid Weight Loss

This stage of workout will accelerate weight loss, once you get good at practicing 75 rounds or more every day. You could complete this stage within a 45 – 60 minute time period. In the beginning, practicing 75 rounds every day might be difficult. You could practice 4 -5 days a week at this stage and combine stage 1 / stage 2 for other days.

Introduction

Are you tired of attempting to loose weight and if you succeed in loosing, then keeping it off ? Then,  look no further. I will show you to how to loose weight rapidly and safely through time tested Yoga Asanas, invented by the great Indian Sages of the past.

You might be thinking — Ha, there’s yet another blog on “How to loose weight?”. I can understand that and know how you feel. So, how is this different?

I have learned from my past mistakes and am re-iterating a method that was used successfully to keep oneself healthy and fit in the past by Indian Sages. They had uncovered a sequence of asanas that provide a “Total Body Workout” and in essence a “package deal” for health/well-being.  Yogis have termed this sequence of asanas as “Sarvanga Sundara Asana” (… total body workout). This Sarvanga Sundara Asana is “Surya Namaskar” ( Sun Salutations ).

Doing multiple rounds of Surya Namaskars is the key to loosing weight and keeping fit for the rest of your life. So, how many rounds of Surya Namaskars should I do and what’s a Surya Namaskar ? Read rest of the blog to find out the workout program, what to eat and more importantly how to eat. I will also be publishing my weekly progress stats, so that you can follow along…

FAQ : Rapid Weight Loss Yoga

FAQ-1: What is the best time to work out ?

The best time to workout is either morning or evening. The only thing you have to observe is to do this exercise on empty stomach (ideally before your breakfast or before dinner). My preference is to workout in the morning after I had my first cup of tea (leaving a gap of 15 – 30 minutes after tea).

FAQ-2: How do I get over body stiffness?

One problem you will encounter when you start working out in the mornings is that you will find your body quite stiff and will find it difficult to bend effectively. Tip that you could use effectively is to take a hot shower before you start working out. A good hot shower will loosen your body and will also put in a good mode.

FAQ-3: How to handle excessive sweating ?

You will sweat excessively when working out the way I have described. It is advisable to keep a cotton towel to wipe your sweat as you progress through first or second set

FAQ-4 : Where should I workout ?

This is the best part. You can virtually workout anywhere you have unhindered space of 6 by 3 foot. Ideally the room you are working should be airy. If you could workout in open air then it’s ideal, but it may not always be possible. I always workout in my gym room

FAQ-5 : What should I wear ?

Light clothing that allows you stretch completely and that is not uncomfortable when you stretch is all you will need. You should ideally NOT be wearing watch, jewellery, ipods and shoes… You are better off doing this workout bare foot.

FAQ-6: What are the benefits of doing Surya Namaskars?

There are innumerable benefits of Surya Namaskars. I will articulate them in detail in another article, but briefly it makes your body supple, help you loose weight and trim fat from all the unwanted areas and control hunger.

FAQ-7: Why is it called “Sarvanga Sundara Asana”?

It is a sequence of 10 asanas, where you bend, stretch, do a push-up, do a lunge, breathe deeply and increase your target heart rate similar to that of running. It works on your abs, neck, hands, legs, thighs and also massages some of the internal endocrine glands. Hence it is but appropriate to be called “Sarvanga Sundara Asana”, meaning a total body workout…

FAQ-8: Can I do this when I am traveling?

Absolutely, yes. This is probably one the best workouts a person traveling can do as it does not demand any special attire, place or environment for a workout.

FAQ-9: How many calories does it burn?

It burns nearly similar number of calories as medium speed running or high impact aerobics. It burns an estimated 7 to 10 calories per round. An effective 45 round workout burns anywhere from 300 to 450 calories.

FAQ-10: What should I eat on this workout plan?

There is no specific diet that you should follow when you are working out with this plan. However, any weight loss plan without a sensible eating plan, is doomed to fail. Eat sensibly and above all “Slowly”. Slow eating and properly chewing your food will restrict you from having larger servings for every meal and in effect will cut down the amount of calorie intake.

Above all, please ensure that your body is well hydrated by drinking atleast 8 to 10 glasses of water.

FAQ-11: How much weight would I expect to loose a week?

Depending on how effective you are with your food, you could expect to loose anywhere from 1.5 to 2 pounds a week.

FAQ-12: How many times should I do this a week?

I would strongly suggest doing this workout at least 5 times a week. Shoot for 6 – 7 times a week.