Yoga and Ayurveda
People think of yoga and ayurveda as of sister disciplines that heal your body, mind and spirit. And they are indeed, an efficient combination of rules and practices, that complement and enrich each other.
Ayurveda helps you keep your body clean and healthy for yoga practice. A body that is not thoroughly prepared can’t handle a good yoga practice and can become a problem.
According to Ayurveda, the life force of the universe is made up of three types of energy, or doshas: vata, pitta and kapha. The five elements – earth, water, ether, fire and air – help us better understand the essence of the doshas. Vata is a combination of air and ether – dry, cool and mobile. Pitta is made up of fire and water, so it is light and hot. Kapha is a combination of water and earth – moist, heavy and cool.
Each one of us is a unique combination of vata, pitta and kapha. This balance is called prakruti. However, doshas move around all the time, and the current state of doshas, or vikruti, depends on our behavior, the time of year, nutrition and many other factors.
As any of the doshas goes out of balance, we feel that something is wrong. Imbalance of vata is manifested by the feeling of worry and anxiety, insomnia, fatigue etc. Typically it happens after you’ve been stressed out, overworked or missed meals. Pitta imbalance leads to irritability, anger, hostility, outbursts of acne, bad breath, hot flashes etc. And imbalance of kapha shows itself in depression, runny nose, coughing, allergies etc.
How can you bring your doshas back into balance? Look around: doshas are enhanced by foods, weather and activities with similar characteristics, and decreased by those with opposite characteristics. With that in mind you’ll see, that, for example, to lower dry and cool vata you should stay warm and have plenty of warm to drink. To balance the light and hot pitta, you have to stay cool. So your inner balance and harmony are totally in your hands.
You can even choose a yoga style to suit your predominant dosha! Ask your yoga coach for help!