Some Key Elements of a Kapha Balancing Practice:
Choosing the following practices when feeling sluggish, stuck, clingy, unmotivated, tired, depressed…will move you back towards balance. The more consistently you work with these elements in your practice, the deeper and more sustained the effects will become.
–Move your body! Although it may be difficult to tap into at first, Kapha types have a lot of stamina! Push yourself to do a little more. Include sun salutations and other vinyasas, jumpings, balancings, inversions, and then include them all over again ☺
–Chest up! Arms up! Spirit up! Lift your chest high, and lift your arms straight up over your head and your energy will come up too. Lifting the chest and opening the armpits is one of the most important tools in yoga therapeutics to ward off depression.
–Jump! Jumping from pose to pose (rather than stepping one foot at a time) brings levity, excitement, enthusiasm, joy, delight, and freedom.
-Open your chest! Opening your chest brings joy and allows the breath to move freely. Begin with shoulder-opening work and move on to practice some backbending poses.
Adho Mukha Vrskasana & Sirsasana. These inversions (handstand and headstand) create heat in the body, and increase strength and stamina. Both poses also increase circulation of blood and lymph.
–Practice balancing. Working on balancing poses gives a sense of poise, achievement and grace. And if you’re not quite at the “grace” part of your practice, be childlike in your practice: Have fun! Fall over! Try again! Try a different way! Be tireless!!
–Don’t go to sleep. Savasana is not naptime! During Savasana, challenge yourself to stay alert and present. Remember that you are the Witness to your own self. The body relaxes, while you observe this relaxation.
–Do one thing. If the thought of getting up and doing your yoga practice seems impossible, what’s one thing you can do? Can you go stand on your mat? And since you’re there, can you stand in Tadasana? And while you’re at it, maybe take your arms up overhead? What else?
Vanessa Serotta is a 500-hour RYT. She received her certification from Eileen Muir. She values the way asana practice brings us to know ourselves more intimately, and looks to the teachings of yoga philosophy to go deeper still. In each of her classes, Vanessa offers her students an opportunity to make and savor this connection for themselves.