Ayurveda states that one’s mind-body system governs health. It is said that the thoughts in the mind lead to various reactions in the body. Both are inseparable and hence to decipher one’s health issues, it’s important for individuals to understand their mind-body type.
Ayurveda explains this interconnectedness via 3 operating agents called doshas. These doshas are Vata, Pitta and Kapha. Though these 3 doshas are present in all human bodies, the dominance of one or more describes the person’s mind-body type. Depending on the dosha, Ayurveda suggests best-suited yoga practices for a person:
People with Vata Dosha have a thin build and are often active, enthusiastic, imaginative, and avid learners. Yin and stretching yoga are best suited for them. Slow-paced, low-impact yoga practices bring in the warmth and relaxing feeling necessary for people belonging to this body type or dosha.
Yoga asanas like Vrksasana (tree pose), Tadasana (mountain pose), and Virabhadrasana I and Virabhadrasana 2 (Warrior One and Two poses) are recommended for people with Vata Dosha.
Pita Dosha people have a medium build. They have strong digestion and sharp hunger and thirst, however, they are also vulnerable to anger and irritability under stress.
As these people enjoy high energy levels and are generally warm, they should avoid hot yoga, which results in profuse sweating.
Cooling and relaxing yoga asanas are recommended for them. Exercises like Ustrasana (camel), Bhujangasana (cobra), Setu Bandha Sarvangasana (bridge) pose, Matsyasana (fish) Kapotasana (pigeon), and Vrksasana (tree) will help them cool down.
An individual with Kapha mind body type enjoys a strong and powerful build, and they often end up gaining kilos, easily. While people with Pita Dosha should not practice hot yoga, Kapha Dosha individuals will benefit a lot from it. Power yoga, which refers to a vigorous approach to vinyasa-style yoga, is also recommended. Hot yoga includes Standing Deep Breathing (Parayma), Half Moon Pose (Ardha-Chandrasana) and Awkward Pose (Utkatasana).
Meanwhile, Paripurna Navasana (Boat Pose), Chaturanga Dandasana (Plank Pose) Salabhasana (Locust Pose), and Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward Facing Dog Pose) are the power yoga poses.
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