At any time, we are expressing a unique combination of elemental forces in our bodies and in our minds. When those forces are combined in a way that’s natural to our unique blueprint, we thrive. When we’re working with a balance of elements isn’t just right for us, we can struggle. Yoga practice can help us recognize the elemental forces we are expressing and help us move toward just the right balance for us, to align our practice with our nature (or dosha in Ayurvedic terms.)
Sometimes when I suggest to students that I would like to help them design a practice that aligns more with their needs, I see a moment of panic. A certain number of students, I imagine, worry that I am going to ask them to practice in a way they find, “too easy.” Another group may dread a practice that’s “too hard.”
Aligning your practice with nature, your own nature and the rhythms of the world around you, is more subtle than “Should I make it easy or should I make it hard?” Alignment with nature begins first simply with noticing. What are your rhythms and desires? How is the world around you influencing your body and mind?
We begin an aligned practice by meeting ourselves where we are. If we tend to thrive on challenge and heat, we head there first. If we are more inclined toward an introspective, quiet practice, we begin there. Once we feel comfortable, we can begin to explore balancing forces. Perhaps we introduce a little light-heartedness for the fiery and competitive among us. We could explore a sustained, but doable challenge or us for those who tend toward being complacent.
When we consistently practice in a way that is aligned for us, the promise of yoga begins to open up. It’s not just theoretical anymore. Not only is practice more satisfying, we also see changes in ourselves off that mat. We may be able to let go of long-held patterns in the conduct of our lives. In short, we become more vibrant and balanced and ready to grow into a mature spiritual practice.
Want to know more? Anna will lead three practices based on the three Ayurvedic Doshas.
Yoga for Your Nature: Ayurvedic Yoga for Your Unique Needs with Anna
Three classes spanning Friday June 16 and Saturday June 17. ($25 each or $60 for all three)
Friday, June 16, 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm – Yoga for Vata
Saturday, June 17, 8:00 am to 10:00 am – Yoga for Kapha
Saturday, June 17, 10:30 am to 12:30 pm – Yoga for Pitta