Fajr: From dawn to just before sunrise.
Zuhr: Just after noon (when the sun has passed the median point in the sky).
Asr: Halfway between noon and sunset.
Maghrib: Just after sunset.
Isha: Dark night (approximately an hour and a half after sunset up to Fajr prayer).

The first two rakats of the Fajr, Maghrib and the Isha prayers are spoken aloud.


Supererogatory Prayers

The fard are the required number of rakats. Additional rakats are often said: the sunnah are after the example of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings upon him) and are said individually that is, not in congregation. The following is a chart of the order and number of rakats for each time of prayer (based on the Hanafi madhab):

Obligatory and Optional Prayers

Fard Sunnah
Nafil Witr
Fajr 2 2      
Zuhr 4 4 2 2  
Asr 4 4      
Maghrib   3 2 2  
Isha 4 4 2 2×2 3*

* In the third rakat of the Witr prayer, the Fatiha is followed by recitation of a portion of the Qur’an and then the Qunut.



Minimize distractions.
Concentrate on the meaning of the prayers.
Pronounce so that you alone can hear yourself.
Hold a position until you are at rest in it.
Pause long enough to say Subhanallah (God is Pure).
Prescribed prayers should be made in Arabic; personal prayers may be made in one’s own language in any posture during Salaat, especially prostration.
If prayer is missed unavoidably, it may be said after its time has passed.