by Wendy Saunders
Photo by Lisa Hobbs on Unsplash

What is Ayurveda?

Ayurveda is the sister science to Yoga with it’s home in Kerala. Written in Sanskrit, it has been passed on through thousands of generations, and uses herbs and pressure points for massage treatments, along with a number of daily routines and procedures.

Ayurveda and Yoga become a holistic lifestyle, promoting longevity, by working deeply to restore and heal the mind, body and spirit.

Why do we need to know our Doshas?

Your Dosha is your Ayurvedic Constitution.

The first activity to introduce Ayurveda into your life is to determine your Dosha by completing an Ayurveda Constitution survey.

Guidelines for determining your Dosha

Fill out the below questionnaire based on your observations over time rather than your present state

Most of us will have one Dosha predominant, a few will have two Doshas approximately equal and even fewer will have all three Doshas in equal proportion.

 

OBSERVATIONS VATA PITTA KAPHA
Size at birth Small Average Large
Body size Thin build Medium build Large build
Body weight Low Medium Heavy side
Weight change Trouble gaining Can gain but lose quickly Gains weight easily, hard to lose
Height Very tall/short Medium Tall & sturdy/ short & stocky
Skin type Thin, dry Smooth, combination skin Thick, oily,
Skin texture Cold, roughness, light color Warm, reddish, freckles, fair, many moles, soft, lustrous Cool, pale
Hair Dry, brittle, scarce, gets knotted, kinky or curly, course Straight, oily, prone to early hair loss or graying, fine, soft Thick, curly, oily, wavy, luxuriant, plentiful
Hair color Brown, black Blond, gray, red, Dark black, dark brown
Teeth Big, roomy, thin gums, irregular protruding/ broken, receding Medium size, soft, tender gums, yellowish Healthy, white, strong gums, big, strong
Nose Uneven shape, deviated septum, small, narrow, may be long Long, pointed, neat, average in size, red nose tip Short, rounded, button nose, large
Eyes Small, sunken or narrow, dry, active, dull, frequent blinking Sharp, average, intense, piercing, sensitive to light Big, calm, prominent, warm, attractive

 

Once you have determined your Dosha, whether it be Vata, Pitta or Kapha, your unique Ayurveda lifestyle can be created.

This is the first in a series of articles on Ayurveda. In our next article, we will explore what the Doshas mean and how we can balance yours!

Wendy Saunders from Govinda Valley Retreat follows a Yogic and Ayurvedic Lifestyle and is qualified in Eco Tourism, Conservation and Land Management, Yogic Studies and Ayurveda Lifestyle. She has experienced her own healing through her diet of natural Ayurveda foods, daily Yoga Nidra, Asana, meditation and Mantra meditation, along with Karma Yoga (selfless service), combined with a safe, caring community.