Al-Sunan Al-Rawatib (Sunnah Prayers associated with Fard Prayers)

Prayer as I describe it miraculous medicine for all the hurt, body, and mental diseases. Prayer is the most crucial obligation from Allah to all Muslims. The command of prayer is the second important pillar of Islam after Al- shahada (I bear witness that there is no God but Allah and that Muhammad is His servant/slave and His messenger). In addition to the obligatory prayer, there is also the implementation of Sunnah prayer which is performed by the prophet Muhammad peace be upon him.

To be able to understand the meaning, we have to clarify those terms:

Fardh– These are mandatory or obligatory prayers. Missing is a sin for Muslims.

Sunnah Muakkadah – These are Mustahabb (highly preferable) and the Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) never missed them.

Nafl – optional, Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) prayed these occasionally.

What are Sunnah Al- Rawatib prayers?

Sunnah Al-Rawatib prayers are done before or after the obligatory prayer. Sunan Al Rawatib is referring to twelve Rakaats that are Sunnah Muakkadah for the five daily prayers. Sunnah prayer covers up all the shortcomings of obligatory prayer. we are all aware that we are not performing the five- prayers perfectly, so we are granted the Sunnah prayer to make up for all the defects we make. Sometimes we do not concentrate, do not present the heart, and our minds are busy with life here’s come the Sunnah prayer to make sure that you have all the Thawab or Hasanat.

Table for number of Rakat in prayer
Sunnah (before)FardahSunnah
Jummah (only on Friday)424+22

The kinds of Sunnan Al- Rawatib

Ratba Muakkadah: it is close to the obligation prayer, and it is twelve rak’ahs, distributed among the prayers. Umm Habiba reported God’s Messenger as saying, “A house will be built in paradise for anyone who prays in a day and a night twelve rak’as, four before and two after the noon prayer, two after the sunset prayer, two after the evening prayer, and two before the dawn prayer.”.

In a version by a Muslim, she said she heard God’s Messenger say, “If any Muslim prays to God twelve voluntary rak’as daily, over and above the obligatory ones, God will build a house for him in paradise,” or, “a house will be built for him in paradise.”

Ratba Mosthaba (preferable and recommended): it is less than Ratba Muakkadah in rank and eight rak’as.

  • 4 rak’as before Asr (late afternoon) prayer.
  • 2 rak’as before Maghreb prayer.
  • 2 rak’as before Isha prayer.

What is Sunnah Al-Rawatib of the 5 PRAYERS?


Aisha (RA) narrated that the Prophet ﷺ said: “The two rakaats before dawn (fajr) prayer are better than the world and all that it contains.”

Aisha (RA) narrated that the Prophet ﷺ was never more regular and stricter in offering any Nawafil than the two rakaats (sunnah before) dawn (fajr) prayer. He ﷺ would not leave these two rakahs even while he was traveling.

It is Sunnah to recite Surah Kaafiroon in the first Rakah and Surah Ikhlas in the second Rakah of this Sunnah prayer.

Al Zuhr

Aishah (May Allah be pleased with her) reported:

 The Prophet ﷺ never omitted four Rak`ah supererogatory prayers before Zuhr prayers.

Umm Habibah (May Allah be pleased with her) reported:

The Messenger of Allah ﷺ said, “Whoever observes the practice of performing four Rak`ah before Zuhr prayer and four after the Zuhr prayer, Allah will shield him against the Fire (of Hell).

`Aishah (May Allah be pleased with her) reported: 

If the Prophet ﷺ could not perform four Rak`ahs before Zuhr prayer, he would perform them after it (i.e., after the obligatory prayer).


Ibn `Umar (May Allah be pleased with them) reported:

The Prophet ﷺ said, “May Allah have mercy on a man who performs four Rak`ah before the `Asr prayer.”

`Ali bin Abu Talib (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:

The Prophet ﷺ used to perform four Rak`ah before the `Asr prayer, separating them with Taslim (i.e., offering blessings) on the favorite angels who are near Allah’s proximity and the Muslims and the believers who come after them. 

Al Maghrib

Anas bin Malik (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: 

When we were in Al-Madinah, the moment the Mu’adhin finished the Adhan of the Maghrib prayer, the people hastened to the pillars of the mosque and performed two Rak`ahs prayers behind them. A stranger coming into the mosque would think that the obligatory prayer had already been performed because of the number of people performing them.


It is proven from the Prophet ﷺ that after ‘Isha’ when he returned to his house, he would pray four rak‘ahs. That was narrated in a hadith from Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allah be pleased with him), who said:

I stayed overnight in the house of my maternal aunt Maymoonah bint al-Haarith, the wife of the Prophet ﷺ, and the Prophet ﷺ was with her because it was her night. The Prophet ﷺ prayed ‘Isha’, then he came to his house and prayed four rak‘ahs. Then he went to sleep, then he ﷺ got up and said: “The little boy has gone to sleep”, or similar words. Then he ﷺ went and stood (to pray) and I stood on his left, but he ﷺ made me stand on his right. He ﷺ prayed five rak‘ahs, then he ﷺ prayed two rak‘ahs, then he went to sleep until I could hear him breathing deeply. Then he went out for the prayer.

The virtue of praying “Sunan Al- Rawatib”

1-Guarantee a house build in heaven for you as we mentioned earlier in the hadith.

2-Implementing something that our beloved prophet Muhammad peace be upon him kept doing. To be Ummah Muhammad, we have to take after the prophet and be consistent and persistent follow him.

 3-Raising of Degrees

Prophet ﷺ said: The first of his deeds for which a person will be brought to account on the Day of Resurrection will be his prayer. If it is good, he will have succeeded and prospered, but if it is lacking, he will have lost and failed. If anything is lacking from his obligatory prayer, Allah, will say: Look and see, does My slave have any voluntary prayers, which could make up for what is lacking from his obligatory prayer? Then all of his deeds will be dealt with similarly.

4-By performing prayers you get closer to Allah (SWT).

5-Forgiving your sins so you will be saved from hell.

6-They represent Charity for every joint of the body.


In short, we are in a dire need of Hassnat and for our sins to be forgiven. Make sure to perform them. You can remember the Rakaat to think of it as a phone number which can be dialed at 2-4-4-3-4 like this or any other way that suits you. Do it step by step and you are not going to forget them later. Remember that decisions become actions, actions become habits and habits become the way life is

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