How To Perform Salah – Step By Step

How To Pray Salah In Islam ــ A Comprehensive Guide To Master Prayer’s Steps

Salah or Salat, the Islamic prayer, is the second of the five pillars of Islam. It is a mandatory act of worship that Muslims perform five times a day to communicate with Allah (SWT) and seek His guidance and blessings. Salah involves a set of physical movements, including standing, bowing, prostrating, and sitting, while reciting verses from the Quran and supplications in Arabic.

Salah, the Islamic prayer, consists of units called Rakat, each comprising several steps. in summary:

  1. Ablution (Wudu): Perform ritual cleansing before Salah.
  2. Intention (Niyyah): Make intention in your heart.
  3. Clean and Quiet Area: Choose a suitable place and face the Qiblah.
  4. Adhan: Recite the call to prayer.
  5. Takbirat Al-Ihram: Start Salah with “Allahu Akbar.”
  6. Start the Prayer: Recite Surah Al-Fatihah and another Surah.
  7. Ruku: Bow down, saying “Subhana Rabbiyal Adheem” three times.
  8. Stand from Ruku: Say “Sami Allahu liman hamidah” and “Rabbana walakal hamd.”
  9. Prostration (Sujood): Say “Subhana Rabbiyal A’la” three times.
  10. setting after Sujud
  11. Second Sujood: Repeat prostration.
  12. Tashahud: Recite At-Tashahud, a declaration of faith.
  13. Tasleem: End Salah with the greeting of peace.
  14. Common Phrases in Salah: Includes Takbirat Al-Ihram, Opening Dua, Surah Al-Fatihah, Ruku, Qiyam, Sujood, and Tashahhud.
  15. Number of Rakats: Varies for each prayer: Fajr (2), Dhur (4), Asr (4), Maghrib (3), and Isha (4).
  16. Praying while Sitting: Permissible for those unable to stand, bow, or prostrate.

Let us explore how to pray Salah and master its steps, so Muslims can improve their Salah performance and make it more meaningful worship.

How To Perform Salah In Islam:

Salah consists of units called Rakat. Each Rakat has the same basic steps. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to perform Salah in Islam:

1. Perform the ablution (Wudu)

Perform the ablution (Wudu), which incloses washing hands, mouth, nose, face, arms, head, ears, and feet. Wudu is a ritual cleansing you must perform before initiating your Salah.

2. Make an intention (Niyyah) 

Make an intention (Niyyah) before initiating Salah. Niyyah should be in your heart, and it is unnecessary to say it. Once you begin, focus on your Salat only, not anything else.

3. Choose a clean and quiet area

Choose a clean and quiet area and stand upright, facing the direction of the Kaaba in Mecca (Qiblah) to pray.

4. The Adhan 

Stand up straight and recite the Adhan (call to prayer).

5. Takbirat Al-Ihram

Begin your Salah by saying Takbirat Al-Ihram (Allahu Akbar) while raising both hands to your ears. Once you start Salah, try to ignore any exterior distractions.

6. Start the Prayer:

Lower your hands and place your right hand over your left one on your chest. Afterward, recite Surah Al-Fatihah, the first chapter of the Noble Quran, while keeping your eyes looking at the site where you will prostrate.

7. Recite another:

Recite another Surah or verses of the Quran, such as Surah Al-Ikhlas. It is only required in the first two rakats of any Fard Salah.

8. Ruku

Bow down while keeping your back straight. That is called Ruku. Place your hands on your knees, focus your eyes on the site of prostration, and recite “Subhana Rabbiy al Azeem” three times.

9. Make Qiyam from Ruku

Stand up from the Ruku position and raise your hands to your ears, saying: “Sami Allahu liman hamidah.” Then, lower them by your sides and say: “Rabbana walakal hamd.”

10. Make Sujud

Go into prostration or Sujood by making your forehead, nose, palms, knees, and both toes touch the ground and saying “Subhana Rabbiy al A’la” three times.

11. Rise from Sujood

Rise from Sujood and then Sit up straight for a moment on your left leg, saying “Allahu Akbar.” It is recommended to ask Allah (SWT) for forgiveness while in this position. Then, go into the second Sujood.

12. Finish the second Sujood 

Finish the second Sujood and sit back up straight, repeating the previous steps for the remaining rakats (units) of Salah, depending on whether it is a two, three, or four-rakat prayer.

13. At-Tashahud

At the end of every two Rakats, sit up straight and raise your right index finger, reciting At-Tashahud:

At-tahiyyatu lilaah wa As-salawaatu At-tayibat

As-salaamu alaika ayyuh an-nabiyyu wa rahmatullahi wa barakaatuh.

As-salaamu alaynaa wa alaa ebaadillaa as-saliheen,

Ash hadu allaa ilaha illa Allah Wa ashhadu anna Muhammadan abduhu wa rasuluh.

It is called the middle Tashahud.

But, if this is the last rakat in Salah, you will recite the final Tashahhud by adding this portion to it:

“Allahumma salli ala Muhammad wa ala aali Muhammad

Kama salayta ala Ibraheem wa ala aali Ibrahim

Innaka Hameedun Majeed.

Wa baarik ala Muhammad wa ala aali Muhammad

Kama baarakta ala Ibraheem wa ala aali Ibrahim

Innaka Hameedun Majeed.”

14. Make Tasleem:

After reciting At-Tashahud, end the prayer by turning your head to the right, saying “Assalamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullah,” and then to the left and repeat it. It is called Tasleem.

Read: How to Pray Salah For Females?

What To Say In Prayer in Islam?

Here are some common phrases a Muslim says during Salah:

1. Takbirat Al-Ihram

At the beginning of Salah, Muslims say “Allahu Akbar” (Allah is the Greatest) while raising their hands to shoulder level.

2. The Opening Dua

The Opening Dua is recited at the beginning of the first Rakat.

We say: “Subhanak allahumma wa bi hamdika wa tabarak esmuka wa ta’ala jadduk wa la ilaha ghairuk.”

3. Surah Al-Fatihah

Surah Al-Fatihah is the opening chapter of the Quran, it is recited in every rakat of Salah.

4. Recitation of other verses

After reciting Surah Al-Fatihah, Muslims recite other Surah or verses from the Quran.

5. Ruku

In Ruku, Muslims bow down, saying “Subhana Rabbiyal Adheem” (Glory be to my Lord, the Greatest) three times.

6. Qiyam

When we stand after Ruku we say: “Sami Allah liman hamidah, Rabbana w laka al-hamd.”

7. Sujud

The Muslim prostrates, saying “Subhana Rabbiyal A’la” (Glory be to my Lord, the Highest) three times.

8. Tashahhud

At the end of the second rakat, Muslims sit down and recite At-Tashahud, a declaration of faith and praise of Allah (SWT).

9. Salam

At last, Muslims turn their head to the right and say: “Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullah,” (Peace and mercy of Allah be upon you) and then to the left, repeating the same phrase to end Salah.

Read A Full Documentation of What to say in Salah in Arabic.

How Many Rakats Are In Each Salah?

The number of Rakats (units) varies depending on the specific prayer being performed:

  • Fajr: has 2 rakats or two units.
  • Dhur: has 4 rakats.
  • Asr: has 4 rakats.
  • Maghrib: has 3 rakats.
  • Ishaa: has 4 rakats.

How To Pray Salah Sitting On the Floor?

Praying Salah while sitting on the floor or chair may be performed by those who can not stand, bow, or prostrate due to age, sickness, or other reasons.

Standing, bowing, and prostration are pillars of Salah. Whoever is unable to do them, it is preferable to sit on the floor or chair to perform Salah.

It was Narrated by al-Bukhari, on the authority of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) about praying. He said: “Pray standing up if you cannot, then pray while sitting down, and if you cannot, then pray while (lying) on your side.”

To pray Salah while sitting on the floor, you should begin by sitting comfortably with your legs in front of you. Then, perform the basic steps of Salah.

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Lastly, Salah is one of the most crucial sections of worship in Islam. Muslims are required to perform Salah five times a day to show their devotion and submission to Allah (SWT).

Muslims need to learn how to pray Salah correctly and sincerely, as it not only fulfills their religious obligation but also brings them spiritual benefits and strengthens their relationship with Allah (SWT).

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