In this series of blogs, ElanVeda will attempt to illuminate the benefits of Yoga in the light of Ayurveda for attaining health and vitality.
Among the five major branches of Yoga, Hatha Yoga is the most popular and widely practiced. Hatha Yoga includes various physical activities ranging from cleansing procedures (Shatkarma) to controlled breathing exercises (Pranayama) done for uniting the strong, active and masculine ‘Sun’ energies of our body with the milder, receptive and feminine ‘Moon’ energies. When practiced according an individual’s body type or Prakriti, practice of Asana (yogic poses) and Pranayama (controlled breathing exercises) which are one of the eight branches of Hatha Yoga are very useful in balancing the physical energies i.e. the doshas. Three core dosha’s exist; Vata, Pitta and Kapha. We will explore each of these body types as they relate to yoga in the coming weeks.
Vata Dosha’s are comprised of two elements, space and air. If you generally have dry and rough skin, are often cool, have a thin or small frame, always on the go, you just might be a Vata. If your dosha is out of balance, you may have dry skin, brittle hair, chapped and raw lips, nervous energy, restless sleep patterns and overly anxious. Tune in to more on Vata dosha in coming blogs for using yoga to help balance your dosha.
Pitta doshas are comprised of fire and water and are generally people who are slender, but not overly tall. You are strong in many ways, including your body and mind. You have no problems being in public, and tend to be focused on what you are doing. Pitta’s hair is often fine with little to no curl, has a fair complexion, and often warm to the touch. How do you know when you are out of balance? If you find yourself waking in the wee hours of the morning unable to go back to sleep, often feel irritated and impatient, suffer from heartburn, irritated skin, and feeling hot, you most likely need to get your Pitta back in balance. Stay tuned for the blog series on using Yoga as one way to balance your Pitta dosha.
Kapha doshas are comprised of earth and water elements, and generally have heavier builds, are solid, and slow but steady in stamina. You generally have beautiful skin and a thick head of hair. You sleep like a baby and have very little in the way of digestive problems. When you find yourself sleeping way too much, putting on a few extra pounds, and perhaps even have an onset of allergies and find yourself walking away from problems instead of challenging them, your Kapha dosha is out of balance. In week 3 of our series on Yoga and balancing your dosha, we will explore how Yoga is one way to bring your dosha into balance.