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Ayurveda and Its Basis in Yoga Therapy

The two most popular words from the Vedic knowledge are obviously "Yoga" and Ayurveda". The philosophy of both these branches of ancient knowledge is not restricted to human beings or our surroundings but encompasses the whole universe. Though both the branches of knowledge are quite distinct when taken up individually but are connected in such a manner that they cannot give benefits individually. This information can be very helpful when you are going for Yoga TTC in Rishikesh or Yoga retreat in Kerala. Thus if are practicing Yoga, you will have to follow the Ayurvedic principles of diet and vice versa. This article is an effort to bring to light the connection of these ancient bodies of knowledge put together in various written texts and daily practices all across India and the world.
Concepts of health in Ayurveda
Literally speaking Ayurveda is wisdom on life and it is one of the four secondary vedas known as "up-vedas" and contains knowledge about healing and well being of the mind and the body. The Shushruta Samhita has the following verse signifying the importance of the balance of the mind and body for the health.

The verse says that all the doshas should be in balance, and also the digestive system should function properly and the excretory system plays an important role in removing the toxins from the body. When these systems work in correlation, the soul is happy, the sense organs are healthy and this is the aim of Ayurveda. Thus we can perceive that Yoga and Ayurveda are like are two hands or two legs with each having their own importance in our lives.Just like Yoga where all asanas are not for everyone, but progressive action need to be taken; Ayurveda also has specific solutions for every specific body unlike Allopathic medicine. Taking these together is the way to go forward, and joining Yoga and Ayurveda Retreats makes it easier.
Sailent Features of Yoga and Ayurveda.
 
1. Yoga and Ayurveda Texts : The strong presence of Yoga in Ayurvedic texts like Charak Samhita, simply means that Ayurveda gives utmost importance to Yoga. In another instance Yoga Sutras from Patanjali mention the Abhayanga which is self massage to prepare for Yoga Asanas.
 
2. Tridoshas and Yoga : Yogic asanas balances the tridoshas viz. Kapha, Pitta and Vata. Specific asanas are there for each dosha. Forward bending poses will balance Pitta, backward bending poses balance Vata and twisting poses will balance Kapha. The very basic of balancing the doshas which is the aim of Ayurveda is done by Yoga.
 
3. Diet as per Ayurveda and Asanas as per Yoga : Both Charak Samhita and Patanjali Yoga Sutras mention balanced diet and Yoga asanas for a better healthy mind and body.
 
4. Ayurveda is an integral part of Hatha Yoga : Hatha Yoga practices mention the use of Ayurveda to get the full benefits out of the primary, secondary and Final poses. Without Ayurveda Hatha Yoga simply become exercise which only benefits the body and not the mind.
 
5. Both are all about Balance : There are 3 gunas for every living being rajas, tamas and sattva. These gunas give rise to varying actions by 5 senses and five elements, thus leading us to the constitution of body. Eating right helps to balance the body as per Ayurveda, and a balanced body leads to a balanced mind which is the main aim of the Yogic principle of meditation.
Relevancy of Ayurveda in Yoga
Maharishi Patanjali was the one who organised the science of asanas into his sutras, to give Yoga a form. It is one of the six systems of the vedic philosophy which include Vedanta, Purva Mimamsa, Nyaya, Sankhya, Vaishesikha and above all Yoga. Yoga is not just exercise but the basic principle is sadhana (practice) to achieve meditative mind which is the basis of all vedic knowledge. Yoga encompasses the whole universe and hence can have many uses. One of the popular use is to keep the body and mind healthy, and for this Yoga can be achieved by turning it towards Ayurveda. This type of Yoga for healing on the basis of holistic health is taught in few of the reputed Yoga schools in their Hatha Yoga and Ayurveda Yoga Teacher Training Courses in India.

Each being in the universe is unique as per Ayurveda.Hence, it treats each individual as a different entity. Ayurveda says that our body constitution i.e "prakriti" remains same right from birth to death, while certain imbalance i.e. "vikruti" might appear during the course of our life. The imbalances affect both our mind and body.

While using Ayurveda in Yogic practices the above is held as a principle. The very basic of Yoga is to purify the thoughts which helps to bring the balance to body and mind. So, the tri doshas are targeted while doing Yoga. Every dosha defines our body and gives it certain strength and certain weaknesses. Ayurveda can be used to balance the doshas and make the maximum benefit of Yoga.
Vata - Vata helps in movement, and is characterised as cold, dry, light, clear and rough. People with predominant Vata will be lean, have dry skin and have digestive irregularity. They will lack strength and patience and get attracted towards actions taking less time. Ashtanga Yoga or Vinyasa Yoga is best for them.
Kapha - It keeps the body lubricated and is characterised as slow, dull, oily, soft, hard and gross. People with predominant Kapha will be built strong and will have heavy body. They gain weight easily and Hatha Yoga is best suited for them to balance energy.
Pitta - Metabolism management is done by Pitta and it is characterised as hot, sharp, liquid and spreading. People with predominant Pitta will have medium built, oily skin, and sharp minds. Ashtanga Yoga is best for such people. Keeping in view the body type , choose the type of Yoga teacher Training you need to take along with Ayurveda.

The applications of Yoga and Ayurveda are really in great demand for the strength and support of the health care system which are helpful in the revival of the traditional heritage along the lines of sustainable approach.
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