what is dosha?

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dosha is your unique mind & body type

ayurveda originated in india more than 5,000 years ago and is used as a preventative medicine health-care system around the world. it draws from the understanding of nature’s rhythms and laws,
ayurveda is built around the five elements of ether, air, fire, water, and earth.

vata, pitta, and kapha are the three mind-body principles, or doshas, in ayurveda, the blend of which determines our individual mind & body type. understanding which yoga styles, postures, and pranayama (breathing) techniques support or weaken each dosha can help you address short-term and long-standing imbalances.
you can be a combination of all three doshas (tridoshic), dominant in two doshas, or dominant in one dosha.

are you curious, what is your dosha?

** below is a very, very, very simplified description of dosha types & the art of balancing them, to learn more about your personal ayurvedic constitution ask us about taking a fun dosha quiz!. **

vata = air & ether
(provides motion necessary for our physical, mental, and emotional processes)
balanced vata types = mentally quick, alert, flexible & creative
signs of balanced vata:
grounded, clarity, calmness, open-hearted

unbalanced vata types = over-amped, ungrounded, may suffer from restlessness, insomnia & anxiety
vata can be aggravated or excessive by:
dry, cold, damp weather; overstimulating environments; lack of routine, a lot of change

balance excess vata by grounding (earth) & soothing (water):
find a SLOW moving yoga practice; set aside some quiet time; find warm & moist environments.

yoga to keep vata balanced:
all spinal twists & inversions
sitting & standing forward folds are great for insomnia
boat pose, plank pose, staff pose, plow pose, mountain pose, triangle pose, warrior poses, & tree pose
long savasana (20-30 min) & child’s pose
alternate nostril breathing
it’s ok to do nothing for a little while!

pitta = fire & water
(that which cooks; vitality, enthusiasm, & intensity)
balanced pitta types = willpower, focus, courage, goal-oriented, decisive, mental acuity
signs of balanced pitta:
less inflammation & irritation, calmness, openness, patience, tolerance

unbalanced pitta types = competitive, fast, quarrelsome, dominating, impatient, resentful, intolerant, fanatical
excessive pitta manifests through:
inflammation, infection, & irritation

balance excess pitta by cooling:
SLOW moving yoga practice or one that holds poses for a period of time.
poses that promote coolness, ease & lightness, releasing heat & stress in the intestines, abdomen, & liver.

yoga to keep pitta balanced:
all standing forward bends, twists, & inversions
seated poses such as hero, sitting forward bends, half & full lotus forward bends
boat pose, cobra pose, half bow (bridge) pose, moon salutations
three-part breath, alternate nostril breathing (open mouth exhales)
practice @ 75% opposed to 150%, ease up on yourself!

kapha = earth & water
(“that which sticks”)
balanced kapha types = devoted, calm, consistent, patient & tolerant
signs of balanced kapha:
weight normalization, elimination of excess congestion & mucus, a greater sense of detachment

unbalanced kapha types = mental sluggishness, procrastination, depression, lethargy, weight gain, attachment
kapha can be aggravated by:
cold weather; too much routine; lack of exercise

balance excess kapha by movement & warmth:
rise at sunrise, find a vigorous yoga practice; move energetically; challenging yourself
sweat, expand your lungs & work your mid-section

yoga to keep kapha balanced:
chest openers & poses that work your mid-section
headstand, handstand, bow pose, cobra pose, camel pose, locust pose,
hold for a long time: forward bends, triangle pose, warrior poses, & tree pose, half moon
jumps to transition through poses, sun salutations
shorter savasana (5-15 min) & child’s pose
ujjayi, kapalabhatu, & right-nostril breathing
get yourself energized!