Ayurveda is based on understanding 3 things
- Your Prakruti which is the nature of an individuals personal constitution Make-Up
- Your Vikruti which is the nature of your imbalance
- Your bespoked Medicine in the form of Yoga, Pranayama, Mediations, foods, herbs, vitimans and other life style choices to bring you into harmony, optimising your health and well-being
This is ideally pointing us to the middle path of being Sattvic in Nature, however imbalance happens, we categorise it as either going too much into Rajasic or Tamasic territory. Over the next three sessions we will look at the Doshas individually, relating to the Dosha when it is in harmony or out of balance.
VATA DOSHA is said to be connected directly to the nervous system and what motivates the other Doshas to move. Vata is the expression of life energy, Prana, which works through the element of Wind and Space which is the active energy in nature, stimulating all things in motion.
Vata has a typical type of body that is said to be the weakest build, delicate bone structure, thin, lean, light and small in frame, they don’t carry much weight, hyper-mobile, cold, skin tends to be thin, transparent dry and rough and have fine hair,
Character Traits of Vata are; being lively, fun, kind-hearted, easily enthused, high in energy, always on the go. You see them running around on their tip toes, limbs expressing their hyper-active and erratic energy. Mentally they are exceptionally creative, love chatting and they are always brimming with ideas, very imaginative. They have the greatest capacity for change and adaptation to life as they are very agile and responsive. They are quick to learn as well as quick to forget as they tend to be multitaskers and get easily distracted by something new.
The exercise that Vata natured people tend to be drawn to, are solitary sports likerunning, cycling, swimming, walking, dancing and even Yoga but prefer doing them by themselves as this is time for them to get lost in their head while moving.
The best diet for a balanced Vata is to eat warm, earthing foods, likes soups, cooked foods which are soft, sweet, sour and salty.
As Vata is a combination Wind and Space aggravated Vata shows up in the body in a few ways where one gets DRIED UP & SPUN OUT. The first way is dehydration in the joints, tissues and dry, rough skin. They have poor circulation, cold hands and feet and highly sensitive to the cold. So stiffness and cracking of the joints that is present.
They are on the go so much where they have irregular appetites and eating patterns. This imbalance in the wind element tends to make digestion sensitive to bloating, discomfort and constipation. They should avoid raw, dry, bitter and cold foods. If a woman, they have irregular periods. When they get ill it usually goes to the lungs.
As Vata is connected to the Nervous System, aggravated Vata are usually quick and shallow breathers hanging on the inhale, hyperventilating which stimulates the nervous system acting flighty. This causes a person to be impulsive, compulsive, to have tremors, restless legs, tapping fingers, pulling hair, tics, nervous movement, tinnitus, vertigo and have poor memory. Usually see them fidgeting all the time. Vata suffer from irregular sleep. They find it hard getting and staying asleep, they have bouts of insomnia and fearful dreams. This adds to their imbalance in their mental and emotional health and are fearful, anxious, nervous, worrisome, easily stressed out and fatigued
Sattvic Vata – Open-minded and hearted, great communicator, enthusiastic, abundantly vibrant and a source of inspiration, always wanting to learn and does so easily as well as to then move to creatively express what they know
Rajasic Vata – Hyperactive, talkative, always on the move, multitasks far too many things they are trying to achieve at once, restless, full of desire that make them impulsive and never satisfied with what is
Tamasic Vata – Paralysed in Fear, Anxious, Erratic compulsive behaviour that leans towards addiction as they will use anything to escape and bypass the cause of the pain felt
The approach to a Vata Reducing Yoga Practice is to challenge the student to move slowly, as they are more prone to injury during asana due to nervousness, sudden movements or going to extremes in postures. And for the student to remain still – grounding, anchoring and strengthening them by holding the pose consciously, aware of the body in the position so they feel supported, calm and able to creatively draw them in to explore their embodiment.
SO HUM – Mantra, Pranayama that are best for Vata are Ujjayi, Brahmari, Nadi Shodhana and Chanting OM, Meditation that leads to the heart. Focusing on the sense organs in practice, sense of hearing and touch, so listen and feel to connect to the space and wind elements.