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How Ayurveda can influence practicing yoga
  • Post by: School of Ayurveda
  • Date: 28-06-2021

Ayurveda is the ancient science of India and said to have been around for 5000 years. It literally translates to Life(Ayur) Science(Veda) in Sanskrit. Ayurveda emphasizes good health along with prevention and treatment of illness by improving lifestyle practices and by using herbal remedies. Yoga is essentially a spiritual discipline based on an extremely subtle science to bring harmony between mind and body. The word Yoga comes from the Sanskrit word 'Yuj', which means to join/yoke/unite. Yoga is believed to unite with divine powers to fuse the body, mind, and soul. It includes breathing exercises, meditation, channeling energy through specific bodily postures for health and relaxation. So how Ayurveda can influence practicing yoga?

Difference between Ayurveda and Yoga

  • Ayurveda is a science of life and has treatment methods that employ natural ways to cure diseases. Yoga is not a treatment method but a collection of specific exercises for the mind and body that helps to prevent many diseases and bring a sense of calmness to the body.
  • The primary goal of Ayurveda is healing the human mind and body using a holistic approach to ensure a healthy life whereas yoga aims at attaining Moksha and inner peace. 
  • Yoga is a technique that can be practiced by anyone anywhere with little guidance. Ayurveda on the other hand requires a deep understanding of the human body and can take ages before anyone can start practicing. In fact, Yoga is practiced as a part of many Ayurvedic treatments.
  • In yoga, the body purification procedure is called ‘Satkriyas’ whereas in Ayurveda the detoxification process is ‘Panchakarma’.
  • Ayurveda originates in the Atharva Veda and Rig Veda, while Yoga originates in the Yajur Veda.

Ayurveda college in Kerala can help you to attain a broader understanding of the two.

How does Ayurveda relate to Yoga?

Ayurveda is often referred to as the sister science of yoga. Both Ayurveda and Yoga offer ways to rejuvenate the body, mind, and spirit. It is believed in Ayurveda that the main cause of the majority of the bodily illness is due to the accumulation of toxins in the body and its treatment mainly focuses on removing these levels of toxicity from the body naturally. It enhances resistance to diseases, alleviates symptoms, and encourages a healthy life. In treatment, both  Ayurveda and Yoga promote the regular practice routine of Pranayama and meditation, body purification procedures, use of herbs and chanting mantras for physical and mental health. 

Many people wonder about how Ayurveda can influence practicing yoga. But the truth is that both Yoga and Ayurveda originated as part of a greater system of Vedic knowledge and are based upon the principles of Trigunas (sattva, rajas and tamas) and the Panchamahabuthas (earth, air, fire, water, space). They follow the Dosha-Dhatu-Mala (humor-tissue-waste material) theory.  Ashtanga yoga and Ashtanga Ayurveda are the eight branches of Yoga and Ayurveda respectively. They both follow the same metaphysical anatomy and physiology consisting of five bodily sheaths, seven main Chakras (energy centers),72,000 Nadis (subtle channels), and the Kundalini Shakti (energy).

Why Ayurveda is important for Yoga practitioners?

Ayurveda does not believe in lifelong medication that helps you to stay healthy without complicated and painful surgeries. As per Ayurvedic principles, every person is different and each one has a unique constitution governed by their physical & emotional structure along with the lifestyle choices like the foods eaten or the time & duration of daily sleep. These constitutions are termed Doshas. The three Doshas are Kapha (earth and water), Vata (air and ether), and Pitta (fire and water). Having knowledge about the doshas and ways to balance them can help us optimize our yoga practice for maximum benefits. All Yoga teachers should be familiar with the fundamentals of Ayurveda and encourage their students to seek Ayurvedic guidance to enhance their Yoga practice. Practicing Yoga without a proper Ayurveda-approved diet may not bring the desired results. Ayurveda college in Kerala educates the students to carry Yoga and Ayurveda hand in hand. Ayurveda expands the dimension of Yoga thereby empowering Yoga to rise to its full potential.

Ayurvedic Yoga for beginners

Studying the unique science of Ayurveda can help you to transform your own physical, emotional, and spiritual wellbeing. There is no greater care than self-care which is where any healer’s journey usually begins. Once you familiarize yourself with Vedas, you will have a new perspective on life and discover new avenues for self-development. In fact, there is no better time like today to start Yoga in the comfort of your home. There are certain factors that one needs to keep in mind when starting practicing Yoga as mentioned below

  • A calm serene place: The whole point of Yoga is to relax and separate from the hustles of daily life. So unless the mind is taken to a quiet and calm place, one cannot fully concentrate on the process.
  • Equipment: Unlike going to the gym, basic Yoga only requires a Yoga mat. 
  • Time to spare: Waking early in the morning can do wonders both physically and mentally. But if that’s not an option, dusk time is also preferred to spare some quality time for practicing Yoga.
  • Calm soothing music: Figuratively speaking, music takes the man to a different dimension. The effect of calm gentle music in the background will help to achieve the level of relaxation required for the process.
  • Type of Yoga: There are various steps and categories of yoga, each with a different end result. Few examples are Hatha, Vinyasa, Mandala, Kundalini, etc. Choose the best one that suits you, to begin with. As you progress, more types of yoga can be included in your routine. 

Hence to answer the question of how Ayurveda can influence practicing yoga, Yoga and Ayurveda go hand in hand and both aim at improving the quality of human life by embracing nature and its blessings. School of Ayurveda is a famous Ayurveda college in Kerala with highly experienced teachers in the field of Ayurveda.