Vata Pitta Kapha: A Beginner’s Guide to Yoga Doshas
Ayurveda has been here for over 5000 years. Being a system of ancient Vedic medicine, Ayurveda can be loosely translated to ‘knowledge of life’. Further, it deals with preventive and curative methods for overall well-being. Also, Ayurveda considers the five elements – fire, water, earth, air, space as the basis of every human body. That also brings three yoga doshas, namely Vata Pitta Kapha into the limelight.
Let’s first have a brief understanding of Vata Pitta Kapha (Yoga Doshas). Then, we will help you understand how to balance Vata Pitta Kapha along with various yoga poses for each Yoga Dosha. Keep reading to know more.
Yoga Doshas: A Brief Introduction
The principle of Yoga Doshas works on five elements, namely earth, water, air, space, and fire. One or two elements dominates a person. Based on the presence of a particular element, Vata Pitta Kapha of a person is decided.
Vata(air & Space):
In Ayurvedic principles, Vata is considered the king of Yoga Doshas. It has control over the physical as well as psychological activities of your body. Even vital functions of the human body are under the control of Vata Yoga Dosha.
Air and space are the two dominant elements in a person having dominant Vata Yoga Dosha. Hence, a Vata dominant personality is slim and energetic. Furthermore, he or she is creative and able to think out of the box.
Cons: Because of the creative mind, Vata personalities get easily distracted. Hence, they lack focus or attention on a single thing for a long time. Moreover, they have frequent mood swings that do not allow them to settle down easily.
Pitta (Fire & Water):
Pitta is related to digestion and has fire as the dominant element in a person. Furthermore, Pitta is responsible for controlling the temperature of your body. Digestion, breaking of food, regulating the metabolic rate, nourishing your body, and absorption of essential nutrients are some major concerns of the Pitta element.
Pitta dominant personalities have oily skin and a muscular built body. Since their bodies burn fat easily, they are naturally shredded and muscular. So, Pitta dominant personalities have a hard time gaining muscle or weight. However, they remain athletic and active in the long run.
Cons: Pitta dominant people have a very tenacious personality that makes them impatient and moody. Moreover, it could lead to conflict. Being a natural fat-burning machine, Pitta dominant people are always hungry and sensitive to warm temperatures.
Kapha (Earth & Water):
A person having a dominant Kapha element has thick bones, strong willpower, and a caring attitude. However, with a larger frame, they are a little slow on their feet. Kapha dominant personalities are supportive to other people and keep everything emotionally and mentally balanced. They go slow through their lives, respond after thinking properly, and act in a responsible manner.
Cons: Due to larger and heavy body frames, Kapha dominant personalities sustain various breathing issues. It could lead to asthma or various breathing disorders. Also, they need regular bouts of motivation to perceive things positively in life.
How to Balance Vata Pitta Kapha
A little imbalance in any of the Vata Pitta Kapha Yoga Doshas could lead to serious consequences. Hence, it is very important that you work towards balancing these Yoga Doshas. Let’s have a brief about how practising various yoga exercises can balance the Vata Pitta Kapha yoga doshas. Read on.
Yoga Poses to Balance Vata
Vata dominant personalities are very unpredictable in terms of their nature or yoga routine. So, the main aim of practising yoga as a Vata personality is to have a stable and grounded routine. The goal is to create a physical, mental, and emotional balance. Hence, all the yoga poses work to balance the Vata personality.
Nothing comes at par with the Tree pose when it is about incorporating a strong balance in your life and body. Not just that, it strengthens your legs, arms, and core.
To practice the Tree pose, stand on one leg with the other leg stuck between your groin and inner thigh. Raise your hands over your head and join them. Further, make sure you breathe into your stomach. Once done on one leg, repeat on the other for the same time.
If you want to improve your overall balance, you need to have full control over your mind and muscles. This is where the Mountain pose comes into play. It engages every big and small muscle present in your body.
To start with, balance your weight on both legs and stand with shoulder-width apart. Look in front while keeping your chin in a neutral position. Keep your arms by your side while engaging every muscle in your body. Further, raise your chest high and spine in a neutral position.
Being close to mother nature, Earth gives you more energy and balances your body and mind. Hence, the Corpse pose is a perfect posture you should practice to balance your Vata Yoga Doshas.
Lie flat on the ground on your back while letting your body lose. Make sure you do not stress or engage your muscles. Moreover, ensure you think about nothing. Remain mindful of your breath as that helps you be in the moment and clear your mind. it further balances various Vata Pitta Kapha elements.
Vata dominant personalities should keep in mind that while practising Sun Salutations, they should move very slowly. The sole focus should be on improving the posture and form.
Sun Salutations comprises 12 basic yoga poses that improve your overall well-being without any hassle. Just make sure you do not push your body hard.
Yoga Poses to Balance Kapha
Yoga poses that warm or heats up the Kapha body should be practised. Keeping that in mind, make sure you inculcate yoga poses that work on the abdominal muscles.
It is one of the best poses of yoga for Kapha dominant personalities. From working on your lower and upper back to improving your core strength, the Locust pose has a crucial role to play.
To begin with, lie on a yoga mat on your stomach and raise your legs a little above the ground. Make sure you engage your core, hips, and hamstring muscles. Further, make sure your legs are straight and your hands are by your body’s side. Remain in this position as long as you can stay while breathing naturally.
Headstand works on your core and balancing muscles. Practising this pose raises your heartbeat and blood flow. Hence, practising the Headstand for a few seconds provides your body with fresh blood flowing through your veins.
To begin with, place your head on a soft surface and raise your legs in the air. If you can’t balance your legs in the air, you can take the support of a nearby wall. It makes your core tight and releases muscle fatigue from your legs. Hence, it is a perfect pose of yoga to balance various Vata Pitta Kapha elements.
Similar to Headstand, the Should Stand works on even more muscles. It works on the shoulder, arms, neck, and core muscles. Hence, it is the perfect pose to balance Kapha along with other elements in your body.
Lie flat on the ground and with a sudden jerk, engage your core to raise your legs in the air. Support your back with your hands while hooking your elbows on the ground for more support. Tuck your neck in your chest to further stretch your neck muscles.
When it comes to opening your chest muscles, nothing comes at par with the Camel Pose. Further, it gently massages your knees.
To start with, kneel down on your knees and keep your spine in a neutral position. Place your toes on the ground and take your arms behind your back to get hold of your feet. It opens your chest and increases the range of motion of your shoulder.
Yoga Poses to Balance Pitta
Pitta dominant personalities have over-heated bodies. Hence, they need some cooling yoga poses. Various stretching poses to improve the cooling rate of your body. Moreover, stretching balances Vata Pitta Kapha elements without any hassle.
Practising the Bow pose stretches the gut region along with strengthening your hips and lower back area. Furthermore, it increases the strength of your hands and arms.
One of the best poses to stretch your gut and upper back area is the Cobra pose. Further, it contracts your lower back and releases any pain or fatigue in that area. Moreover, it strengthens your arms and improves wrist movement.
Standing Forward Bend
When you bend forward while standing, this yoga asana helps your heart pump more blood to your head. Hence, the brain functions more efficiently to improve the flow of blood to your body so that it cools down much easier. Therefore, Standing Forward Bend is perfect to cool down your body.
Place your feet flat on the yoga mat and balance your weight equally on them. Slightly hinge your hips a little before bending forward. Moreover, make sure you keep your spine straight so that more and more stretching shifts to hamstring muscles.
Half Lord of the Fishes
Massaging your core is important to stretch the internal lining for the proper cooldown of your body. Hence, the Half Lord of the Fishes is the ideal yoga asana to stretch and massage your core muscles.
Sit on the floor with your left leg straight and your right leg crossed over your left leg. Your right foot should be near the left knee. Bring your body towards your right while looking towards the extreme right. However, make sure your left leg and right leg do not move. Repeat on the other side.
Vata Pitta Kapha: Exercises & Diet
Apart from yoga practice, there are some other things you should keep in mind to balance Vata Pitta Kapha elements. Let’s have a brief idea about various points to keep in check while doing any exercise to balance out the Vata Pitta Kapha elements. Moreover, go through diet charts to know what should you avoid or what can you eat.
Points to Check While Exercising
Vata dominant personalities have an active and athletic body. Therefore, they should include various exercises into their routine that help sustain their athletic abilities. Hence, it would be wrong to inculcate intense exercises into the routine. For instance, activities like cycling, swimming, weight lifting, running, high-endurance sports can also be included in the Vata dominant personalities’ routine.
One thing that Pitta dominant personalities should keep in mind is never to push their bodies to the extreme. It is because their bodies burn fat faster than any of the Vata Pitta Kapha bodies. It can lead to an injury or muscle tear since Pitta bodies lose water easily. If possible, refrain from cardio and include weight resistance training into your routine.
Being an owner of a heavy and strong body, Kapha dominant bodies should focus on weight training. However, make sure to include cardio into your routine for the perfect functioning of your body. Basically, any type of exercise is perfect for the Kapha bodies.
Do’s & Don’t of Diet For Vata Pitta Kapha
Diet plays a major role in how your body functions or behaves in a particular situation. Eating a high carbohydrate diet for endurance-based activity is the perfect move. However, relying solely on fat for energy could be a foolish move. Therefore, you should know which type of food to include in your routine for best results.
Vata bodies should include warm and soft food in their diet. For instance, berries or bananas would be perfect in the long run. Make sure you avoid a dry and cold diet. For example desserts or cold vegetables.
Having non-starchy food along with oats and eggs should be a part of your daily diet. However, heavy and spicy food should stay away from your diet.
You should include whole-grain food and eggs in your diet. However, keep fatty or oily food at bay to function perfectly. Also, don’t consume nuts or seeds more often.
As you can see, Vata Pitta Kapha has different requirements in terms of exercise, diet, and yoga poses. So, you should be very much aware of every element. Keeping every little detail in your mind brings perfection to your mind and body.
If you want long term benefits, include yoga practice into your daily routine. Over time, you become efficient at practising different yogic exercises, taking care of your diet, and following an exercise routine. You gain perfect mind and body balance that helps you live a peaceful and healthy life without any hassle.