The Ayurveda Series: Daily Routine

Routine is good for all doshas;


Vata – helps them remain calm and focussed Pitta – enables them to cope better with the many things they want to cram in and to feel a sense of accomplishment Kapha – helps to energise and motivate


Generally it is best to do work involving mental focus and concentration in the morning, physical things in the afternoon and spend the evening relaxing and winding down.

Ayurveda routine guidelines;


Arising

  • Try to attune your biological clock to nature and the sun and wake with sunrise or between 6-7am


Natural urges (!)

  • The best time to empty your bowels is on rising as this helps to clear accumulated kapha, helping you feel awake and alert

  • Never suppress natural physical urges such as emptying bowels, urinating, eating when hungry, drinking when thirsty, sleeping when tired, sneezing, yawning, burping, crying or passing wind as it aggravates vata and so adversely affects the other doshas


Drinking water

  • Drinking a glass of warm water (boiled then allowed to cool a little) helps to flush out your system (pitta should take cool water instead)

Oil massage

  • Self-massage every day before a bath or shower improves skin, tones the muscles and blood vessels and has a soothing effect on the nervous system (it’s particularly calming for vata)

  • It also stimulates circulation, aids removal of wastes from tissues and induces restful sleep

  • It can be done in all seasons except when it’s hot in summer


Exercise

  • Should be taken regularly but vigorous exercise is best taken in winter and spring

  • It increases stamina and resistance to disease by enhancing immunity, clearing channels and promoting circulation and elimination of wastes

  • Reduces tendency to depression and anxiety

  • Depending on age, kapha can take more heavy exercise, pitta should take moderate, uncompetitive exercise and vata should do gentle walking or yoga

  • Sun salutations get your prana moving, remove stagnation and strengthen digestive fire

  • Avoid any exercise if unwell and immediate after a meal

  • Pranayama wakes you up, clears the mind and oxygenates the body, helping to enhance physical and mental stamina

Bathing/showering

  • Recommended after massage using warm water for your body and cool water for your head


Clothing

  • Should be light, unless the weather is very cold, and made up of natural fibres such as cotton, wool, linen, bamboo or silk

Diet

  • Eat regularly, 4-6 hours between meals and at 2-3 hours before going to bed

  • Eat slowly and chew each mouthful to aid digestion

  • Avoid heavy foods at night

  • After lunch take a short walk to aid digestion (have a little rest first so don't get up and move straight away)

  • In the evening you could take a stroll in the fresh air to refresh mind and body


Meditations

  • Meditate before bed – after bathing, sit in a comfortable position with straight spine and focus on the breath or a mantra

  • Ideal for disciplining the mind, increasing awareness and clarity and reducing stress

Sleep

  • A calm mind, oil massage, a bath, good dinner and comfortable bed in a soothing environment should help ensure a good night’s sleep

  • It’s best to go to bed at the same time each night, if possible and preferably by 10pm