5 Ways to Bring Ayurveda into Yoga Practice - Ayurveda | Everyday Ayurveda

5 Ways to Bring Ayurveda into Yoga Practice

By on June 10, 2016
ayurveda and yoga

With the popularity of Hatha Yoga growing every single day, it is now more than ever, that we need to become aware of Yoga’s sister science in our daily practice and in our lives. Ayurveda and Yoga go hand in hand, so much so, that it’s easy to say that they were born of the same stuff.

So similar in their philosophies, that when you bring Ayurveda into your Yoga practice, you may just feel like you’ve found your Yoga’s long lost soulmate.

Here are 5 easy ways to merge Ayurveda and Yoga in your daily practice:

1. Know your Dosha

According to Ayurveda, every body is different. Likewise, everybody should have a practice, a dietary and daily routine that suits their specific body type (a unique composition Vata, Pitta, Kapha).

By understanding your doshic makeup you will be able to adopt a lifestyle that aligns with the natural rhythms that create perfect balance.

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2. Practice asana (postures) for your dosha

Group classes are great, but we have an onboard radar for classes that are oh so pleasing to the senses. Don’t we?

What this means, is that for the Vata mind, which tends to be at a heightened sense of activity, they will LOVE a class that has a quick pace and that hardly stops moving. Sound Familiar? Vatas should tend towards a slow, grounded, steady yoga practice.

Pitta folks will naturally gravitate to hot yoga! Why the fire children do this, I will never understand. They’ll be dripping sweat, and all the while wondering, “Why, oh why am I breaking out when I am eating so healthy, and doing so much hot yoga?!!” Pitta individuals will do well with a moderate practice, NOT in a hot room!

Our easy going friends of the predominantly Kapha nature will have no problem sitting through that Yin class. That class where you do maybe 4 or 5 postures through the entire 90 minutes. These classes, by the way, are notoriously despised by the Vata individual, and it’s a perfect class for them. Kapha will do well with your more upbeat, aerobic type yoga classes.

By recognizing what kind of practice is great for your dosha, you will get much more benefit out of your asana practice.

3. Review your dietary habits

Think that oh so delicious “Yogi” breakfast bowl of homemade yogurt, nuts and berries, fresh fruits and granola is the perfect breakfast choice? Think Again!

While all of those things may be good (for some, not all) on their own, when mixed, it clogs the digestive track, breeds ama (toxic buildup), and increases Tamas (that lethargic, sleepy feeling of inertia).

Ayurveda has simple, easy to follow food combination guidelines…like never mixing fresh sweet fruit with sour yogurt and avoiding all of those dry nuts, fruits and seeds.

By eating for your dosha, you improve your digestion and elimination and in turn, health flourishes.

4. Try meditation…again

If you find meditation more difficult than most, you are most likely not adopting a practice that is best suited to your specific mind body makeup.

Yes, Ayurveda has suggestions for meditation as well.

Vata predominant types will have a hard time sitting still or focusing on one thing, which most meditation practices require. So they should try a guided meditation, perhaps yoga nidra or a walking form of meditation.


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Pitta types will find that music, tratak (steady gazing) or mantra meditation will be beneficial.

Kapha types will find that they can sit quietly in stillness with ease.

By practicing a meditation that is best suited to your dosha, you will find it easier and more enjoyable, and you will reap the countless benefits of a regular meditation practice.

5. If you study Yoga, study Ayurveda

Ayurveda is the Yogic system of medicine. Not simply regarding asana, but a complete system of healing that develops its view of the mind and body from the background of Yoga philosophy. It provides a system of healing that offers a Vedic and Yogic approach to all aspects of routine and lifestyle, diet and herbs, asana, meditation, breath work and more.

Yoga Teachers and practitioners trained in Ayurveda are in a better position to fully experience all of the healing benefits that can be found by bringing Ayurveda and Yoga back together once again.

“We need a yogic system of medicine not simply in terms of asana or physical therapy, but also in regards to internal medicine or diet, herbs and drugs. We need a yogic system of medicine not simply for treating the physical body but also for treating the mind, emotions and psychological disorders. Such a greater yogic system of medicine need not be invented. It already exists in the form of Ayurveda….”

“…What we need are ‘Yoga doctors’, primary health care providers following a Yogic system of medicine that covers all aspects of internal and external medicine, physical and psychological well-being. This can be accomplished by bringing Ayurveda back into Yoga.”

– David Frawley

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About Jacquelyn Richard

Jacky Rae believes that Ayurveda and Yoga as therapy are pillars of transformation and personal growth. She’s a dedicated mother of two amazing boys, writer, blogger, world traveler & entrepreneur and the Co-Founder of Yoga Veda Life, an International School that is dedicated to promoting conscious living by providing tools for life as taught in traditional hatha yoga and Ayurvedic medicine. Together with her partner, they offer certified Ayurveda Yoga Teacher Training Courses both Foundational (RYT 200) and Advanced (RYT 300/500) as well as a 100 hour Ayurvedic course by the San Diego College of Ayurveda. She also offers year round Panchakarma and Ayurvedic Detox, Sacred Breath and Wellness Retreat programs in Monte Vista Retreat Center on the island of Koh Phangan, Thailand as well as in Yoga Veda Life’s B&B style retreat in Ajijic, Jalisco, Mexico on the beautiful Lake Chapala. Connect with Jacky Rae on Facebook and LinkedIn, check out her Blog, or Yoga Veda Institute.

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