To promote the concept of wellness, well-known author and artist Kavitha Ramakrishna has bettered her previous record by performing 648 surya namaskars (sun salutations) at a stretch. Oman-based Kavitha performed the feat at her home under supervision of yoga experts.
Regular yoga practice of surya namaskar or sun salutation, combining a sequence of 12 elegantly linked asanas, is known to provide the body with some exceptionally healthy benefits. In 2018, in collaboration with Oman Cancer Association (OCA) to raise breast cancer awareness, Kavitha had performed 432 surya namaskars at a stretch to become the first person in Oman to have achieved the feat. Kavitha, an expert on surya namaskar, has authored an extensively researched book on salutations to the sun titled ‘Tamoghna’.
Speaking of her achievement, Kavitha said, “As the world grapples with the health challenge of COVID-19, this is a good time for us to imbibe fitness practices which will boost our immune systems. With surya namaskar, each movement of the body is synchronised with breath, exhaling and inhaling as you move. Along with yoga, it is a great means to help enhance respiratory health and immunity, both of which are involved in the prevention and healing from COVID-19. Even if you perform one set of surya namaskar per day there is an immense benefit to reap.”
She added, “While I am elated that I could break my own previous record, I would like to take this opportunity to urge everyone to take up fitness activities such as surya namaskar, a core of yoga, that improves overall body strength, builds stamina, and develops fitness. While I performed 432 surya namaskars as part of a relay event held to raise awareness as October is observed as Breast Cancer Awareness Month in 2018, my intention was to stress the point that studies have proven that performing yoga and surya namaskar provides immense benefits to cancer patients.”
Kavitha took six hours to complete 638 surya namaskars. The act was significantly easier for her because she has previously done 324 surya namaskars nearly eight times apart from the 432 in 2018.
Well known international hockey personality and former national hockey coach of Oman, S A S Naqvi, praised Kavitha’s accomplishment and said, “I appreciate her dedication to promoting the concept of surya namaskar which is one of the best forms of stretch exercises. This fitness regime is possible at home and is particularly significant during this lockdown when many don’t have options to go out and explore gyms and walking tracks.”
“Kavitha is a well-known expert in the topic and I would like applaud her fortitude and willpower to complete 638 surya namaskars which is not an easy task. Meanwhile, all can try out one set of surya namaskar per day since it is a method which is considered a full body workout,” Naqvi added.
Amelia, a yoga practitioner and teacher based in Masirah Island also appreciated Kavitha’s effort. She said, “Kavitha is a remarkable lady and an inspiration to everyone, and her new record of 648 Surya Namaskar during Covid-19 lockdown came as no surprise, knowing her strength of character and determination. It is a quite remarkable feat even for regular and long-term yoga practitioners. I would like to congratulate her on this incredible achievement, and it is just what is needed at this time. Kavitha has shown us that everything we need to better ourselves mentally and physically is within ourselves and we don’t need to go out of our homes to make a start to improve our lives.” Amelia, who is originally from the UK, has been living in the GCC for four years and teaching yoga. She is passionate about spreading the message of health and wellbeing and making it accessible to all.
Kavitha’s comprehensively researched book ‘Tamoghna’ articulately explicates the science behind surya namaskar. The book also traces the history of yogic philosophy, crux of yoga practice and deals specifically with vast benefits of surya namaskar. The book inspires yoga practice with a deeper understanding of the elaborate connection of mind, body and spirit. To endorse and inspire healthy practice, Kavitha shares her knowledge, experience and expertise through special workshops organised for corporates on the benefits of the therapeutic philosophy of surya namaskar, a yoga practice combining a sequence of 12 elegantly linked asanas.
Following the success of her book ‘Tamoghna’, Kavitha was last year extended the opportunity to submit her research paper on surya namaskar to the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Geneva. The paper she presented evaluated applicable and relevant information on surya namaskar. She works with India’s Ministry of AYUSH to continue her research on salutations to the sun. India’s Ministry of AYUSH was formed in 2014 to ensure the optimal development and propagation of yoga and other traditional health techniques.
As a build-up to the release of book ‘Tamoghna’, Kavitha got an opportunity to apprise the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his visit to the Sultanate. Kavitha has also presented her book ‘Tamoghna’ to His Excellency Dr Ahmed Mohammed Al Saidi, Oman’s Minister of Health.
Apart from being a yoga subject expert, Kavitha Ramakrishna, is a celebrated author, well renowned Tanjore style artist, Sanskrit language expert, dedicated educator and philanthropist. Arts, culture and community work connoisseur Kavitha has been honoured with several prestigious awards. Kavitha is a recipient of Karnataka government’s Nadaprabhu Kempegowda Award, Al Mara Excellence Award, Indian Embassy Oman award, and 2019 Oman’s Woman of the Year Award for significant contributions in the field of arts, culture and community work.
Kavitha has been constantly engaged in promoting close cultural connection between India and Oman. Being a cultural ambassador, she has used every opportunity to create people-to-people and cross-cultural connections between Omani and Indian citizens.