Chandra Namaskar Steps

Chandra Namaskar

Given below are the step-by-step instructions to follow for the practice of Chandra Namaskar (Moon Salutation):

  1. Stand in Tadasana (Mountain Pose) with feet together, shoulders back and chin perpendicular to the chest.
  2. Inhale and raise the arms up with the fingers interlocked to go into Urdhva Hastasana (Palm Tree Pose).
  3. Exhaling, take the left foot away from the right foot (more than hip distance apart) and place the feet outwards. Bend the knees while in full exhalation and come to Utkata Konasana (Goddess Pose).
  4. While in Utkata Konasana, press the feet firmly on the ground and feel the inner thighs stretch ensuring the knees feel comfortable while in this partial squat. Ensure the knees are facing outwards giving the adductors (inner thighs) a deep stretch.
  5. Keep the spine straight, shoulders in line with the hips, arms bent at the elbows, and palms are facing in front with fingers wide open. The upper arms stay in line with the shoulders, and the forearms are perpendicular to the upper arms.
  6. From this pose, inhale and straighten the legs taking the left foot outwards to 90 degrees and the right foot inwards to 45 degrees.
  7. Exhale and flex from the hips and bend taking the torso towards the left side to go into Utthita Trikonasana (Extended Triangle Pose). With complete exhalation go down and hold the left big toe with your hand. The right arm is extended up while you gaze at the fingers.
  8. Alignment is essential to stay in comfort in Utthita Trikonasana, the hips in line with the shoulders, the knees locked by pulling them upwards, the shoulders in line with the chest making sure the chest is facing forward and not facing the ground.
  9. Lock the knees while in this pose and feel the stretch at the inner thighs, hips, lower back, shoulders, sides of the psoas muscles, calves, gluteus maximus, and neck. Each part of the stretch is essential for staying in balance in Utthita Trikonasana.
  10. From Utthita Trikonasana inhale and release the right arm and take it behind along with the left arm as you turn inwards with your torso to stretch facing the left extended leg. Exhale and press the chest, face, abdomen towards the left thigh and left knee while you take the arms behind in Anjali Mudra to stay in Parsvottanasana (Intense Side Stretch Pose).
  11. While here, press the shoulders and chest inwards and feel the stretch at the hamstrings, knees of the extended leg along with the stretch of the quads and inner thigh muscles of the back leg. The stretch at the lower back, neck and core muscles should also be felt.
  12. Make sure the feet are firmly grounded, and the alignment of the lower body along with the shoulders and chest are perfect to enjoy Parsvottanasana.
  13. Inhale and release the neck and arms while placing the right knee on the floor. Exhale raise the arms up to go into Anjaneyasana (Crescent Low Lunge Pose).
  14. Stretch the arms upwards as you feel the stretch from the navel moving upwards to the neck. Take the torso in a backbend as you tuck the tailbone in.
  15. Inhale, release the arms and turn the hips and torso towards the right side and placing the hands on the floor come to Skandasana (Half Squat Pose).
  16. Extend the right leg placing the heels on the floor while you balance the body on the left toes while the knees are bent. Balancing the body with the support of the hands on the floor feel the stretch in the inner thighs of the extended leg. Ensure the spine, and the shoulders are in alignment.
  17. From the Half Squat Pose, release and repeat the same extending the left leg out and balancing on the right toes. Open the inner thighs as you exhale to go deeper into the pose.
  18. To move now towards the right side of the body, repeat the steps going backwards from step 13 to 1, to finally end in Tadasana.
  19. Follow the steps carefully and practice with the same intensity as done with the left side of the body. After the completion of the 6 poses, one round of the Chandra Namaskar is complete.
  20. Repeat the steps taking the practice to about 4-6 rounds and always make sure the breathing process is in coordination with the body movements.
  21. Release and relax in Tadasana (Mountain Pose).
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