How to perform Taraweeh prayers

Taraweeh prayers are a form of voluntary prayer from the religion of Islam. They are traditionally performed during “Ramadan”, the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, and the period in which fasting occurs. The word “Taraweeh” is loosely translated as “to rest and relax” - as the prayer is so long a brief period of resting is included. The prayer can be performed by all Muslims, including women and children.

The time that Taraweeh prayer is supposed to be performed is in the evening, between Isha (last of the daily prayers) and Fajr (first of the daily prayers.) Congregate together at the Mosque with the other Muslims during the evening.

Perform “Wudu,” the act of cleansing oneself. To do this, declare the act an act of purity. Wash and cleanse the hands three times, then inside the mouth three times, then inside the nostrils three times, then the whole face three times, the the right and left arms three times each, then the whole head once, then the ears once, and then each foot three times, starting with the right foot. Use the hands and water to do so, in this order. Once this is done, prayer can take place.

Decide upon how many Raka’ahs (units of Muslim prayer) will be performed. Taraweeh prayer is always performed with an even number, and it is generally suggested to perform eight of them, including the movements of bowing, sitting, prostrating and standing. The prayer should be performed two raka’ahs at a time.

Long sections of the Qur’an are read throughout the Taraweeh prayers, and the Qur’an is generally separated into “Juz” (equal sections) so that the entire Qur’an will have been completed by reading it every night for the month of Ramadan. Generally the Imam reading the Qur’an will be considered “Hafiz,” which means he has memorised the complete book.

Finish the prayer off by saying Witr prayer after the eight Raka’ahs. These are always performed three times. It is correct to end the Witr prayer by saying “Allaahumma innee a’oodhu bi ridaaka min sakhatika wa bi mu’aafaatika min ‘aqoobatika, wa a’oodhu bika minka. La uhsee thanaa’an ‘alayka, anta kamaa athnayta ‘ala nafsik.”


Use the reference below to understand how to perform the odd-numbered prayer.


A basic knowledge of Muslim Salah must be known in order to complete this.

Things You'll Need

  • A mosque
  • Water
  • A copy of the Qu’ran
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About the Author

Hannah Read is a writer based in Colchester, Essex, having written since her school days. Her articles have appeared in "The Times Online," "Upmarket" and her own blog in which she writes reviews and articles, mostly about film and media.