A workout that has a positive impact on both the body and mind builds composure and confidence in athletes. Suryanamaskara (the sun salutations) is one such exercise regime designed to harmonize the physical cycle and the solar cycle, promoting a sound body and mind.
Sun is the symbol of spiritual consciousness, the primary source of energy and the existence of life on Earth. Suryanamaskara (sun salutations) are best practised early in the morning on an empty stomach invoking the Sun to bestow radiance and strength while chanting 12 influential names of the Sun before every round.
The regular practice of Suryanamaskara boosts the solar plexus, the central point of the human body located behind the navel, which is connected to the Sun. This technique enhances creative, intuitive and leadership qualities, which are an essential, attribute to be cultivated by sportsmen. It creates self-awareness opening avenues for knowledge of strength and weakness for athletes.
A sequence of 12 steps, the sun salutations are a perfect blend of forward and backward bending yoga poses, making it an apt full body workout regime. The poses include Pranamasana (Prayer pose), Hastauttanasana (Raised arms pose), Hastapadasana (Standing forward bend), Ashwa Sanchalanasana (Equestrian pose), Dandasana (Stick pose), Ashtanga Namaskara (Salute with eight parts or points), Bhujangasana (Cobra pose) and Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward facing dog pose).
The rhythmic breathing process keeps the lungs well ventilated, providing oxygenated blood to the whole body, an excellent way to detox and build stamina. The alternate forward & backward stretches, strengthen and tone the muscles of the body, improve flexibility and blood circulation. A happy, healthy gut, the key to maintaining a healthy body is another essential benefit of Suryanamaskar.
Besides health benefits, they have a calming effect on the brain. The hands folded in Namaste position connect the right and left side of the brain. The salutations also soothe the spine and gently stimulate the nerves, reduce anxiety and impart a sense of positivity. A calm mind enhances the decision-making abilities paving the way to success for athletes.