[GHHF] Bala Samskar Kendras – Students learned about Suryanamaskaras, practiced it and learned the mental and Physical Benefits

18 Mar 2023 580 Views

Michael Pym

“To reach the reality which is concealed by the unrealities of the visible world. That is yoga – literally union with God. With ruthless logic, India dismisses the unthinking Western deification of science as a means of discovering ultimate truth. Science, especially as the popular mind understands it, with its test tubes, its microscopes, its laboratories, all its most delicate instruments, while it is helpful, has an inherent limitation. It is still confined to the bounds of this form world. India, through centuries upon centuries, has taught another method of attaining reality. This is the system of yoga."

Global Hindu Heritage Foundation has been consistently working to preserve and protect our Sanatana Dharma for decades.  Many people across India have been calling to find out how we are organizing Ghar Waapasi and what it takes to organize in their respective States. We started Bala Samskar about One and half years ago with only few schools. As of now we have expanded to 200 villages to ensure that our children are protected from allurement and enticement,

Students are learning Practicing Surya Namaskaras

What is Surya Namaskar? 

In Sanskrit, surya means sun and namaskar means greeting or salutation. Surya Namaskar is then a greeting to the sun! It is an ancient ritual of twelve steps that warms up the body preparing it for yoga practice. That is why it is practiced at the beginning of a yoga class. This warming sequence has a rich history and holistic benefits for the body and mind. Read more to find out about this widely known and ancient yoga practice! 

Surya Namaskar Kriya 

Kriyā is a Sanskrit term. It is derived from the Sanskrit root, kri, meaning "to do''. Kriyā means "action, deed, effort". The correct way to refer to Sun Salutations, is to call it a kriya. Surya Namaskara is an action consisting of 12 steps. Unlike popular belief, it is not a series of asanas!  Surya Namaskara Kriya is linked to engaging the solar plexus to raise solar energy within the body and to solar energy itself. 

The Purpose of Surya Namaskar 

Performing asanas in the rays of the sunrise sounds beautiful and inviting but what really are the reasons why we should practice Surya Namaskar? 

Surya Namaskar comprises 12 steps that are purposefully woven together to benefit mind and body in various ways. Surya Namaskar is a practice in itself as well as a warming-up before performing further yoga asanas. It allows for “opening” of the body as it stretches, strengthens and lengthens all muscle groups. Surya Namaskar stimulates prana, life force energy through the body helping to regulate our mental and physical faculties.   

Read more: 5 Reasons You Should Never Skip Sun Salutations

The Mythology and Tradition Behind Surya Namaskar 

In the Vedas, everything in the universe has a male and female side. The female side of the sun is nourishing and life-giving and in Hindu mythology depicted as Gayatri. The male side of the sun is invigorating, energy giving, and activating, and in Hindu mythology depicted as Surya.  

Gayatri can be likened to yin energy and Surya to yang energy. In Sun Salutations our purpose is to warm-up and invigorate the body for the following asana practice.  

Opposite to common belief, Surya Namaskara Kriya is practiced facing away from the rising sun. The purpose is to receive the stimulating and heating sun on your spine, as you warm up the body with Sun Salutations. Traditionally, one would greet the rising sun with a deep bow and prayer and then turn away from the rising sun to receive energy on the backside of the body.  

As Surya gave life to the world through his powerful energy; heat energy energizes the body through the practice of Surya Namaskar. 

The Benefits of Surya Namaskar 

There are various studies emerging on the investigations of Surya Namaskar and yoga as having physical and mental health benefits. As Western and Eastern medical systems merge, the energetic benefits of Surya Namaskara also emerge. Here we look at some of these benefits and the connection between Surya Namaskar and the chakras.  

Learn more about our 7 Chakras - The Complete Guide to the Energy Centers and their Effects

Physical Health Benefits  

Although Surya Namaskar can be practiced at any time of the day, it is best to practice at sunrise as sun rays can help revitalize the body & the mind. Surya Namaskar can be done in a 3-speed variation– slow, medium, or fast pace. A slowed pace helps increase body flexibility, and a medium pace helps in muscle toning. Fast-paced rounds of Surya Namaskar are beneficial to one’s cardiovascular health and can aid in weight loss.  

Surya Namaskar helps improve blood circulation and strengthen heart function. It also enhances resting cardiovascular parameters such as systolic blood pressure, diastolic blood pressure, and pulse pressure. 

Surya Namaskar stimulates a rhythmic breathing process as breath is synchronized with each movement. This empties the lungs more vigorously and there is an opportunity for more oxygenated air to refill them.  

More alveoli of the lungs are expanded, stimulated, and then cleansed. Alveoli are a crucial part of the respiratory system associated with breathing. Alveoli are tiny, balloon-shaped air sacs. Their function is to move oxygen and carbon dioxide (CO2) molecules into and out of the bloodstream. 

Through the rhythmic breathing of Surya Namaskara, the oxygen content of the blood is increased. This improves oxygenation of the body, especially the heart, and brain. The cardiac muscles also improve through this rhythmic breathing and movement.   

Surya Namaskar is also beneficial for digestive health and other systems of the body as the practice of Surya Namaskar interacts with the organs of the body directly, by applying pressure, massaging, stretching, and overall toning up the muscles. This aids the elimination processes of the body.  

Mental Health Benefits

The practice has mental health benefits. Consistent practice of Surya Namaskar sharpens one’s ability to focus, improves self-confidence, and helps to develop self-discipline. It calms the nervous system and its consistent practice can contribute to managing anxiety, depression, and insomnia.  (https://www.arhantayoga.org/blog/surya-namaskar/)

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