Surya Namaskar for Weight Loss: Does it Help?

Surya Namaskar is a popular and age-old yoga pose that is linked with weight loss. Although weight changes are gradual, the effectiveness of Surya Namaskar for weight loss has been proven to be true

here are 4 types of Surya Namaskar poses. These are –

  • Hatha Surya Namaskar
  • Sivananda Surya Namaskar
  • Ashtanga Surya Namaskar Type A and B
  • Iyengar Surya Namaskar

Below, we will discuss the Surya Namaskar poses for weight loss, including the most popular one, the ancient Hatha version. However, we will also list the different poses required for other versions of Surya Namaskar.

So, here’s how to do Surya Namaskar for weight loss with the Hatha version!

Hatha Surya Namaskar

Hatha Surya Namaskar is the most ancient form of Sun Salutation. It is performed slowly over longer periods than other forms of Surya Namaskar. Hence, it is considered to be among the easiest Surya Namaskar poses for first-time yoga practitioners.

1. Pranamasana (Prayer Pose)

pranamasana
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Here’s how to do the first sun salutation pose for weight loss –

Step 1: Stand upright on your yoga mat. Shoulders should be straight and hands by your side.

Step 2: Inhale and lift both of your hands upwards.

Step 3: Exhale and bring your hands together in a namaskar mudra.

Keep your back straight at all times to prevent excess pressure on the lower back.

2. Hasta Uttanasana (Raised Arms Pose)

hasta uttanasana
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This pose involves arching your back and bending backwards. Here’s how to achieve this pose!

Step 1: Inhale and elongate your body. 

Step 2: Stretch your hands up and bend backwards. 

You should feel the stretch in your body as you keep your knees to the ground and arms stretched towards the ceiling.

3. H888 Pose)

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After the Raised Arms Pose, it is time to perform the Hand to Foot Pose.

Step 1: Exhale and bend down from your waist.

Step 2: Keep your back straight.

Step 3: Touch the floor with your palms.

4. Ashwa Sanchalanasana (Equestrian Pose)

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Follow these steps to complete the next pose in the series.

Step 1: Inhale and push your left leg back to touch the ground with your left knee.

Step 2: Focus on pushing the pelvis to the floor while keeping your back straight. Look upwards.

Step 3: The right leg should be between your palms with the feet firmly placed on the floor.

5. Dandasana (Stick Pose)

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The stick pose is also known as the plank pose, and it is responsible for strengthening your core.

Step 1: After the Equestrian Pose, you must bring your right leg back and place it hip-width apart.

Step 2: Keep the arms perpendicular and balance your body weight with them.

Step 3: Take deep breaths and maintain your hips and chest at a medium level, neither too high nor too low.

6. Ashtanga Namaskar (Salutation With Eight Body Parts)]

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Step 1: Continuing from the plank pose, exhale and bring your knees, chest, and forehead on the floor while the hips are pushed upwards.

Step 2: Stay in this pose and take deep breaths.

The highlight of this pose is that it helps you relieve anxiety while making the back muscles stronger.

7. Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose)

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The next pose continues from pose 6.

Step 1: Inhale while raising your chest upwards and slide forwards.

Step 2: Keep your palms firmly pressed on the floor and your ribs inwards.

Step 3: Look upwards to prevent hurting your lower back.

Step 4: Push your chest outwards and the pelvis towards the floor.

8. Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward-Facing Dog)

adho mukha svanasana

Kicking off from the cobra pose, get into the downward-facing dog. 

Step 1: Exhale and lift your hips and waist.

Step 2: Keep hands and feet firmly fixed to the floor.

Step 3: The body should form a triangle.

Step 4: Keep your back straight and bend the knees a little in case you should feel a pull in the hamstring.

9. Ashwa Sanchalanasana (Equestrian Pose)

It’s time to go back to the equestrian pose from the downward-facing dog.

Step 1: Inhale and return to the equestrian pose. This time, however, use your right leg.

Step 2: Bend from the previous pose and bring your legs in between your palms.

Step 3: Keep your right knee on the floor.

Step 4: Keep your left leg perpendicular to the floor.

10. Hastapadasana (Hand to Foot Pose)

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Now we’re back to pose 3. Here’s how to switch this pose from the Equestrian Pose.

Step 1: Exhale and bring your right leg back to the front.

Step 2: Keep both your legs straight and your back bent. 

Step 3: Relax your body as this helps to maintain adequate blood flow.

11. Hasta Uttanasana (Raised Arms Pose)

hastauttanasana

After the 10th Surya Namaskar pose, return to the second pose. Here’s how to back up into the second pose.

Step 1: Inhale and return to step 2.

Step 2: Stretch your entire body from the tips of your fingers to the toes.

Step 3: Keep biceps close to the ears and shoulders rounded.

12. Tadasana (Standing or Palm Tree Pose)

tadasana

Finally, we’re at the 12th and simplest pose of the Surya Namaskar. 

Step 1: Bring your hands down and exhale.

There are 19 poses in this sequence. They are: 

1. Samasthiti (Tadasana)

2. Chair Pose (Utkatasana)

3. Standing Forward Bend (Uttanasana)

4. Half Forward Bend (ArdhaUttanasana)

5. Four Limbed Staff Pose (ChaturangaDandasana)

6. Upward Facing Dog (UrdhvaMukhaSvanasana)

7. Downward Facing Dog (AdhoMukhaSvanasana)

8. Warrior I (Virabhadrasana I)

9. Four Limbed Staff Pose (ChaturangaDandasana)

10. Upward Facing Dog (UrdhvaMukhaSvanasana)

11. Downward Facing Dog (AdhoMukhaSvanasana)

12. Warrior I (Virabhadrasana I)

13. Four Limbed Staff Pose (ChaturangaDandasana)

14. Upward Facing Dog (UrdhvaMukhaSvanasana)

15. Downward Facing Dog (AdhoMukhaSvanasana)

16. Half Forward Bend (ArdhaUttanasana)

17. Standing Forward Bend (Uttanasana)

18. Chair Pose (Utkatasana)

19. Mountain Pose (Samasthiti or Tadasana)

Iyengar Surya Namaskar

The sequence of Iyengar Surya Namaskar is similar to the Hatha sequence. However, it is more fast-paced with swifter transitions. Here also, there are 12 poses.

1. Tadasana (Mountain Pose)

2. UrdhvaHastasana (Upward Hand Pose)

3. Uttanasana (Standing Forward Bend)

4. ArdhaUttanasana (Half Standing Forward Bend) 

5. UttithaChaturangaDandasana (High Plank Pose) 

6. ChaturangaDandasana (Four-Limbed Staff Pose) 

7. UrdhvaMukhaSvanasana (Upward-Facing Dog) 

8. AdhoMukhaSvanasana (Downward-Facing Dog Pose) 

9. ArdhaUttanasana (Half Standing Forward Bend) 

10. Uttanasana (Standing Forward Bend

11. UrdhvaHastasana (Upward Hand Pose)

12. Tadasana (Mountain Pose)

What Are the Benefits of Surya Namaskar for Weight Loss?

Here are the Surya Namaskar benefits for weight loss:

  • Surya Namaskar helps in weight loss if done at a fast pace.
  • It helps you have glowing skin
  • Surya Namaskar helps strengthen the joints and muscles and helps fight stiffness.
  • In addition, it improves the functioning of the digestive system.
  • Moreover, it also enhances sexual stamina and improves blood circulation.
  • Strengthens core and body muscles.

Apart from these advantages, Surya Namaskar for weight loss also benefits mental health and aids in detoxification.

Who Should Avoid Doing Surya Namaskar for Weight Loss?

While Surya Namaskar has been shown to aid in losing weight, some should avoid doing the same. These include –

  • Women with over 3 months of pregnancy.
  • Individuals with a hernia, high blood pressure, and back conditions.
  • Menstruating women.

The benefits of Surya Namaskar for weight loss are manifold when done repeatedly in sets. Moreover, you will also need to hold the pose as directed to lose weight effectively.

Disclaimer: Before starting with any of the Surya Namaskar poses, consult a qualified yoga professional to avoid any injury.

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