VAIL — Ayurveda is a science of health and healing that has been practiced in India for thousands of years and currently is the fastest growing Complementary Alternative System in the West. This ancient science recognizes poor digestion as the root of all disease and makes diet and lifestyle recommendations specific to an individual’s unique body type to maximize nutrient absorption, diminish allergies, improve overall vitality and sleep, and cultivate joy. The Vail Vitality Center’s Ayurvedic Wellness consultant, Julia Clarke, leads a two-hour workshop on Saturday to help demystify the practice and teach participants some basic lifestyle guidelines to improve health and well-being.
Ayurveda recognizes three fundamental traits that form the underlying structure of nature, known as Doshas. The Doshas, which characterize everything from people and places to seasons, are identified by their qualities:
Vata Dosha is cold, dry, rough, light, quick, irregular and always moving. Vail, winter and a flighty ballerina all possess extreme Vata.
Pitta Dosha is hot, sharp, quick and fluid. Death Valley, summer and the sharp-tongued chef all possess extreme Pitta.
Kapha Dosha is heavy, cool, stable, fluid and slow moving. Seattle, spring and a deliberate weight lifter all possess extreme Kapha.
Every individual is a different blend of the three Doshas, and the seasons either increase or reduce the effects of Dosha tendency in the body and mind.
“Right now, we’re in the heart of summer, which translates to an increase in the natural fire in the body, known in Ayurveda as Pitta,” Clarke said. “Pitta governs digestion and transformation in body and mind and is responsible for your ability to process food and information, extracting what you need and eliminating the rest. Pitta is the source of our natural passion, and energy, but when nature conspires to stoke too much fire, aggravating Pitta, we suffer from hyper acidity, high stress, skin inflammation and ultimately total burn out.”
Clarke provides a thorough introduction to Ayurveda during this engaging lecture, and participants will gain insight into their own health based upon their dominant Dosha, including what foods and activities are best suited to them. Participants will learn about the best foods and behaviors to stay balanced in the heat of busy summer, or even when stress and activity levels are high, igniting Pitta.
For information or to register for “You, In Balance, an introduction to Ayurveda” at the Vail Vitality Center on Saturday from 10 a.m. to noon, visit www.vailvitalitycenter.com or call 970-476-7960. The workshop is open to members and Vail Vitality Center guests. Cost is $25 in advance and $35 the day of the workshop.
Clarke teaches vinyasa flow yoga and Anjali Restorative Yoga. She is the yoga director at the Vail Vitality Center and a certified Ayurvedic wellness consultant. Clarke traveled to India for two weeks last February to study Ayurveda. She also has studied under some of today’s most renowned yoga teachers and offers soulful and dynamic yoga classes to serve this mountain community that stir a deep sense of embodiment and self-participation.
“We’re in the heart of summer, which translates to an increase in the natural fire in the body, known in Ayurveda as Pitta”
Vail Vitality Center’s Ayurvedic Wellness consultant