Tiffany Wood Yoga

Calming The Winds of Change with Yoga

Tiffany Wood practices a Wide Legged Forward Fold

How does yoga approach making a healthy transition with the change of seasons?

Just like the world around us, people are made of a combination of the 5 elements. As the leaves begin to change and the temperature gets colder, the elements of air and ether become predominant. This same combination is also known as the human constitution or the ayruvedic dosha called Vata. Of the three doshas known as Pitta, Kapha and Vata, the latter is the most easily disrupted. Yoga embraces the challenge of making the transition from Pitta’s heat of summer into the colder and dryer Vata of fall by acknowledging what energies are predominant and taking actions that bring balance to the body, mind and heart.

Blessed with summer’s last heat and fall’s first chill, we meet the winds of Vata. Accustomed to summer’s fast pace and crisp salads, you may now find your joints cracking and notice feeling sensitive and uncertain. Frequent dreams and restless sleep also signify that change is in the air. You might also notice that the fast paced vinyasa class that you love leaves you feeling less than grounded. Other signs of Vata imbalance are bloating, gas, indigestion, anxiety and insomnia.

How can your yoga practice bring a sense of balance and peace as you move into fall and winter?

Practice Grounding Self-Care

  • Treat yourself to a daily oil massage. Sesame oil is great for grounding.
  • Eat warmer & savory foods like soups and root vegetables. Enjoy a cup of hot water with lemon before meals.
  • Regulate your routine; awake and retire at the same time.

Asana Practice

  • Slow down and practice one pose at a time. Limit or skip the vinyasa between postures. Hold your poses for 5 even breaths.
  • Embrace more forward folds, headstands and shoulder stands.
  • Focus on a calming and grounding breath and really pay attention to transitions.

Pranayama Practice

Brahmari – The Buzzing Bee Breath

To calm and ground yourself, embrace the buzz of your exhales. This simple breathing technique not only balances Vata, it’s also extremely helpful for:

  • Hypertension, as it calms down the agitated mind.
  • Alleviating migraines.
  • Reducing blood pressure.

Learn how to practice Brahmari Pranayama.

Meditation Technique

In a seated posture with your eyes closed, repeat the bija sound Lam with your exhales. This is the sound associated with the root chakra or the muladhara. Repeating this internal sound will activate the grounding current called Apana Vayu, calming excess vata.

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