It is advisable to take only a light, semi-liquid diet in the evening and night before shankha-prakshalana.
Don't do any asanas early in the morning before commencing and also do not take any food, tea, coffee, etc. before the practice.
Plenty of hot water should be made available. The amount depends on the number of people intending to do the practice. But a bucket of hot water should be ready before beginning. There should be one person with you who does not do the practice and he or she can prepare more hot water as it is required. Furthermore, while you are actually doing the practice this extra person can start to prepare the special food which you will eat when you have completed the practice.
Using another bucket, mix this hot water with cold water so that you have a large quantity of lukewarm water. The water should be reasonably warm, but not so warm that you cannot drink it comfortably. Then you must add salt to this water so that the water tastes salty. In other words, don't add too much salt so that the water is undrinkable, but at the same time add enough so that it can be tasted. As a guide, we suggest that you add salt in the proportion of two teaspoonsful per litre of water. This need not be exact. You must use your own discretion. Thoroughly dissolve the salt in the water. The importance of salt has already been explained1.
A glass should be made available for each person who is doing the practice. Each person is likely to consume more than sixteen glasses of water, so make sure that you have a steady and sufficient supply of warm water.
Wear light and comfortable clothes. In fact, the clothing in which you normally practise asanas would be the most suitable.
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