Importance Of Yoga In Ayurveda

yoga and ayurveda


Yoga and Ayurveda can be understood as independent schools of practice but with the same country of origin. They are, however, closely interwoven. If Ayurveda is an all-embracing healthcare system, Yoga is one of the ways to go about it. Ayurvedic practitioners will recommend all their patients to practice Yoga along with other Ayurvedic recommendations like diet changes.

The importance of Yoga in Ayurveda is taught in-depth in colleges and institutes like Sri Sai. Explore their courses here. Students who wish to work in Ayurveda, helping people become healthy needs to understand how close of a relationship between Yoga and Ayurveda is. The same has been elaborated on below in short.

Also Read: Ayurvedic Diet - A healthy lifestyle

History of Yoga and Ayurveda

The history of Yoga and Ayurveda have similar timelines in terms of origin. Documents dictate that Yoga originated sometime in the Indus Sarasvati civilization. One of the oldest texts of India, Rig Veda also has mentions Yoga. Rig Veda has mantras, songs, and also rituals that are to be used by Brahmins during different religious practices. The same text also recommends the rishis to promote yoga as a means to combine the higher consciousnesses. In simple words, Yoga was and still is a means to train the body and the mind and be more self-aware of our surroundings.

Ayurveda, on the other hand, was put together in the form of text in Atharvaveda by Dhanvantari who received the education from Bhrama himself. Most of the text on medicines, diseases, and treatments, that we know of today, was written down during this period itself. However, some historians are also of the opinion that Rig Veda is the true origin point of Ayurveda, which is the same for Yoga.

How is Yoga connected to Ayurveda?

Yoga and Ayurveda have the same Vedic roots and operate together towards a common goal. The principles and goals for both are more or less the same. Ayurveda will take care of the mental state and physical health through diet and other changes. Yoga, on the other hand, will work at unifying the mind, body and soul.

Ayurveda works on doshas whose base belief is that each person is different and therefore the treatment for each one should be different. Yoga similarly has several poses for different purposes. The connection between Yoga and Ayurveda can be put simply as a symbiotic in nature working together to make people healthier and happier.

Why should one do Yoga and Ayurveda?

In order to establish the Ayurveda and yoga connection, it is also essential to understand the benefits of both. How can Yoga and Ayurveda improve our lives not just in the short term but also in the longer term is worth exploring. Stated below are some reasons why one should pick up Ayurveda and Yoga.

  •  Ayurveda along with Yoga is a great way to detoxify the body. Ayurveda has great recipes that one can include during meal times that will help in eliminating unwanted elements and make the necessary elements absorb better.
  •  With a proper diet and regular yoga, people can witness weight loss. Ayurveda recommends regular and light exercise on a daily basis such as walking, running and importantly, yoga.
  •  When one starts working out regularly, there is lower body aches and joints pains. This is because our bodies are continuously being used and we are more flexible. For long term health preservation, Yoga and Ayurveda is the right choice.
  •  After every session of Yoga, it is recommended to wrap up with a round of quick meditation. The benefits of meditation itself will make a separate topic but one can experience lower levels of stress and anxiety.
  •  Practising the principles of Ayurveda and yoga regularly also leads to lowering and also eliminating certain illnesses. For instance, blood pressure and cholesterol levels are under control when both are done together.
  •  Besides internal and physical well being, Ayurveda also helps individuals get bright, glowing and youthful skin. The ageing process, although cannot be reduced, is certainly slowed down.
  •  Poor diet, lack of exercise and sleep among other factors can lead to inflammation. This in turn can lead to many diseases like diabetes, pulmonary disease, cardiovascular disease etc. Eating as per Ayurvedic doshas is one way to prevent all of this.
  •  The overall quality of the individuals who practise Ayurveda and Yoga are improved. There are fewer diseases, less stress, metabolism is high and there is a general well being.
Also Read: Age Old Remedies and Ayurveda Behind them

How to include Yoga and Ayurvedic practices in daily life?

With the importance of yoga for students and everyone discussed, let us understand how to best include yoga in our lives along with different Ayurvedic practices.

  •  The first important pointer to start doing yoga is to do so on an empty stomach. Sadhguru explains this as anything that is not part of the body must be expelled in order to get the energies to start moving. In the morning, before any meals empty the bowels and then start yoga.
  •  Wear comfortable and loose-fitting clothes. As opposed to when one is doing strength and lighting exercises in the gym, yoga needs the body to move freely. Doing yoga will move energies in and out of our bodies and tight clothes will prevent this movement.
  •  Warm up the body a bit before the actual Yoga practice. This is a necessity to prevent muscle straining. Stretch all parts of the body and get the heart rate up a little bit to start.
  •  Understand the limits of the body. Do not expect to achieve full flexibility during the first couple of sessions. Do not hold any mudra or pose to the point that it starts hurting. Respect the body’s limits and it will start showing results soon.
  •  Yoga is all about breathing. We all breathe without giving a second thought but with yoga, one needs to relearn how to breathe properly.
  •  Lastly, do not treat Yoga as a to-do item on the daily list. Yoga can be a fun event to do in the morning alone or with family. The more one enjoys it the longer will they stick to it.

Indians grow up watching Yoga television shows and fully understanding the benefits of yoga. But often when lives get busy, our health and diet are ignored. Ayurveda and Yoga can take care of both. All one needs is an initial push and keep the momentum up with consistency.