Struggling to get through your second chaturanga without sweat cascading onto your mat? The heat is a beautiful thing for warming up our muscles and inviting us to come to yoga a little more relaxed and sun kissed. However, everything in balance. Too much heat can lead to swelling, redness, sleeplessness, anxiety and sudden rage! Plus, summer holidays mean getting to class is so much harder. So how can we stay cool and maintain our practice in the heat?
Yoga's twin health system, Ayurveda, breaks down our environment and inner-constitution into three types, called 'doshas'. These are kapha, connected to damp, phlegm, heaviness; vata, connected to air, wind, changeability and lightness; and pitta, connected to fire, heat, metabolism and will-power. Summer is a pitta-dominant season, and if we fall into excess here we can 'burn up' and 'burn out'! So, to bring ourselves back to balance, we need to eat, drink and do a little bit of the opposite.
Most of us tend towards one or two of these doshas. If you already have a fair amount of fire in you, though you may love summer, if you start to notice heat symptoms building up, start to adapt your diet and lifestyle to bring more cooling qualities in.
PADA ANANDA | Foot bliss