VATA

AIR and SPACE

Those with a predominance of ether and air are mainly vata, having the characteristics of those elements as their traits and tendencies. For example a vata dosha person would have a tendency toward dry hair and skin from the air element and the attributes of creativity and expansiveness from the element of space.

Typical characteristics:
  • Low weight
  • Thin frame
  • Dry skin & hair
  • Talkative
  • Enthusiastic
  • Creative
  • Energetic
signs of imbalance:
  • Weight loss
  • Constipation
  • Weak immune system
  • Weak nervous system
  • Confusion
  • Anxiety
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Insomnia
solutions to help regain balance

Try to engage in pursuits and lifestyle choices that offer the following traits:

  • Warmth
  • Heaviness
  • Moisture
  • Stability
  • Relaxation

Some examples include:

  • Choose cooked grains & vegetables, especially root vegetables. Warm drinks and foods build strength
  • Eat frequent small meals
  • Use spices such as cinnamon, cardamom, fennel, cumin, and ginseng in teas, food and warmed milk.
  • Avoid eating when nervous or worried
  • Try to stick to a routine
  • Avoid late nights
  • Avoid strong stimulants such as caffeine and alcohol.

PITTA

FIRE

Those who are predominantly fire and less dominant in the water element would be classified as pitta. They would be inclined to be very active and sharp, competitive and full of passion, like fire.

TYPICAL CHARACTERISTICS:
  • Hot
  • Light
  • Dry or oily
  • Mobile
  • Sharp
  • Penetrating
  • Moderate weight
  • Good muscle tone
  • Highly focused
  • Competitive
  • Capable
  • Courageous
  • Energetic problem solver
SIGNS OF IMBALANCE:
  • Diarrhoea
  • Infections
  • Inflammation
  • Skin rashes
  • Weak liver spleen and blood
  • Haemorrhoids
  • Body odour
  • Heartburn
  • Sharp tongue
  • Intense anger
  • Jealousy
  • Resentment
SOLUTIONS TO HELP REGAIN BALANCE

Try to engage in pursuits and lifestyle choices that offer the following traits:

  • Cooling
  • Calming
  • Steadying
  • Soothing

Some examples include:


  • Add cooling spices such as fennel, cardamom, coriander or bitter spices like turmeric.
  • Choose heavier, cooling foods.
  • Eat 3 meals a day.
  • Lots of fresh fruit on empty stomach.
  • Choose sweet herbs e.g. spearmint, liquorice or basil.
  • Avoid hot spices.
  • Avoid strong stimulants such as caffeine and alcohol.
  • Choose non competitive sports and activities.

KAPHA

EARTH and WATER

Those with tendencies towards water and earth will be cool and stable with lustrous hair, supple skin and a lower metabolism. These people are classified as having a predominantly kapha dosha.

TYPICAL CHARACTERISTICS:
  • Cool
  • Moist
  • Stable
  • Heavy, lustrous hair
  • Supple skin
  • Low metabolism
  • Stocky
  • Large frame
  • Steady personality
  • Handles stress well
  • Doesn’t like change- likes comfort
SIGNS OF IMBALANCE:
  • Lack of motivation
  • Depression and lethargy
  • Weight gain
  • Weak lungs & sinuses congested
  • Prone to diabetes (non-insulin dependant)
  • Excess Mucous
  • Swollen puffy joints ( cool to touch not warm)
SOLUTIONS TO HELP REGAIN BALANCE

Try to engage in pursuits and lifestyle choices that offer the following traits:

  • Dry
  • Warm
  • Light
  • Invigorating.

Some examples include:

  • Choose light, dry, warm foods e.g. cooked grains such as millet, buckwheat, quinoa and amaranth
  • All legumes (pre-soaked and well cooked)
  • Pungent, bitter vegetables eg. chillies, onions, garlic and bitter greens like kale and swiss chard.
  • Eat main meal at lunchtime.
  • Cook with hot spices such as cayenne pepper and clove.
  • Lots of vegetables both cooked and raw
  • Small amounts of nuts
  • Avoid dairy or use moderately
  • Choose competitive or aerobic based exercise

Body Type Analysis

WHAT ARE MY DOMINANT ELEMENTS?

Read each set of characteristics carefully and make a note of the set that describes you best. Don’t worry if you have characteristics from other sets, just choose the one that best represents you through the majority of your life. If you don’t feel any describe you, leave it blank; if you feel that more than one set is very applicable, or you are a total mix of more than one, tick all that apply.

Appetite

A: Variable with little consistency from day to day; often anxious to eat; feel full after eating less than what you wanted; can feel feint between meals; like to snack on crunchy things rather than have proper meals; don’t cope well with skipping meals

B: Good appetite and enjoy eating; become irritable if meals get missed; can get headaches, nausea or feel dizzy if you don’t eat.

C: Slow stable steady appetite; doesn’t faze you if you miss a meal; you don’t feel hungry on waking; can be prone to emotional eating.

Digestion and Bowels

A: Suffer with bloating, gas, discomfort and burping; can get lower abdominal distension; stools are dry and hard and dark in colour; prone to bouts of constipation; can have alternating constipation and diarrea; sometimes feel the need to have a coffee or smoke a cigarette to act as a laxative

B: Strong digestion and metabolism; can suffer with heartburn, burping; sometimes feels mild tenderness around belly button; gets easily aggravated by spicy foods; rarely constipated; stools are well formed but can be on the loose side and are yellowish in colour; dried fruit and milk can have laxative effect.

C: Digestion is slow and heavy, and creates fullness in upper stomach; can feel lethargic and sleepy after meals; stools are well formed and resembles peeled banana. Can be pale, clay coloured, sometimes slightly oily; you don’t suffer with either constipation or diarrea, or if you do its rare.

Taste

A: Natural inclination towards sweet, sour and salty tastes, but can also be tempted by hot spicy foods

B: Natural inclination towards sweet bitter and astringent tastes, but can be tempted by pungent or sour tastes

C: Natural inclination for bitter pungent and astringent tastes but can be tempted by sweet and salty foods.

NB taste examples :
Sweet – grains, milk, meat, cheese, honey, potatoes
Sour – citrus, sour grapes, tomatoes, yoghurt, fermented foods
Salt – rock salt, sea salt, sea fish, shellfish, sea vegetables
Pungent – pepper, garlic, raw onion, ginger, eggplant
Bitter – leafy greens, coffee, turmeric, beets
Astringent – lentils, leafy greens, legumes, cranberries, unripe bananas, pomegranate.

Thirst

A: Variable thirst; dry skin, perspire very little

B: good thirst; perspire a lot

C: Thirst is mainly limited but can be excessive on occasion; takes quite a bit to make you perspire.

Urine

A: Light in colour, frequent elimination

B: Bright yellow in colour, can be excessive

C: white and foamy; infrequent

Menstruation (if applicable)

A: irregular cycles; sever cramping; scanty flow; tendency to miss periods especially if exercising a lot or during weight loss; long space between menses (over a month); can have clots; suffer with pre-menstrual anxiety, nervousness, restless sleep.

B: Regular cycles; medium strength cramps; may bleed heavily and for many days at a time; less than 4 weeks between menses; loose stools prior to menstruation; pre-menstrual irritability, can suffer with acne or spots, rashes or headaches.

C: regular cycles; mild cramps; average flow; sometimes notices mucous in blood; pre-menstrual water retention and lethargy; digestion can be slower.

Physical activity

A: attracted to vigorous physical activity; tendency to walk fast, talk fast, and move fast; tendency to fidget during times when stillness is required e.g. during a talk, or long movie or mediation; stamina is low – often feels burnt out

B: attracted to vigorous activity and competitive sport; average stamina; often fail to recognise limits; usually feel hungry or thirsty after working out

C: good stamina but avoid exertion; need to be motivated to exercise; once exercising, feel great for doing it.

Climate tolerance

A: prefer warm and tropical climate; dislike cold, windy or dry climate; seek out external sources of heat

B: Low tolerance for strong sunlight and very hot weather; like to have windows open and fan on

C: prefer a dry warm climate; can tolerate most climates but prefer warm to cold.

Sexual activity

A: variable sex drive; enjoy sexual fantasy (sometimes more than actual sex); easily aroused but get burnt out easily. Fertility can be low.

B. Strong sexual appetite; good balance of desire and fulfilment; easily aroused. Fertility is moderate.

C. Steady sexual appetite;  aroused slowly but remain passionate for a long time once aroused. Strong fertility

Sleep

A: Light sleeper; prone to insomnia; wake several times a night; don’t like to sleep in total darkness – prefer a dim nightlight on; have been known to sleepwalk/sleep talk/grind teeth; restless sleeper; feel unrested in the mornings; like own bed/own pillow – find it hard to sleep in other places.

B: Light sleeper but not easily disturbed; return to sleep quickly upon waking; wake up alert; cannot sleep with the light on – prefer total darkness.

C: sleep deeply; feel rested on waking; often snore; can sleep for many hours at a stretch; can sleep anywhere – on a rug, in a chair etc

Dreams

A: dream a lot –mind is energetic in dreams – and they will often involve movement – i.e. running, being chased, flying, jumping; struggle to recall dreams in the morning, but can sometimes remember dreams from just before waking.

B: Dreams are vivid, colourful and detailed; often recall dreams; feel in control in many dreams

C: dreams are calm and peaceful often involving nature, friends and family; can be emotional; intensely emotional dreams are recalled most easily

Voice and Communication

A: weak; prone to hoarseness; tire easily; like to talk but often stray from topic.

B: very pointed and precise in what you say; enjoys debates

C: Heavy voice; speak slowly and cautiously; will initiate conversation only if it is important; good listener.

Physiological Characteristics

Quality of mind

A: quick and creative; imaginative; emotionally sensitive; enthusiastic; many interests and abilities; sensitive to subtle changes; intuitive; compassionate; difficulty concentrating on one subject; often fails to complete projects you start; loves travel; mind is mobile and irregular; difficulty resting the mind

B: highly intelligent; ideas are penetrating; can get frustrated with those who are not of equal intelligence; confident; understands new concepts quickly; great planner; organised; good ability to focus on single objectives; natural leader; high achiever; can be arrogant and stubborn; can be jealous; materialistic; can be hot headed

C: compassionate; loving; patient, sweet natured; gentle, kind, emotionally stable; community oriented; satisfied with life; can be greedy; get easily attached to people and things; hoarder of material things; can be slow to fully understand things

Friendships

A: you are widely known but not deeply known; sometimes crave friendship/company – other times craves solitude; make friends very easily; give a lot of energy to friendships.

B: Make friends easily; will sometimes be attracted to friends that will be useful to you; have many followers, but only a few close friends; are protective over close friends; exchange a lot of energy in friendships

C: Take time to make friends, but once you do they last forever; can be easily taken advantage of; get very attached to people; good listener; absorb a lot of energy from friendships – e.g. receiving love, knowledge etc.

Emotional attachment

A: Find it hard to let go; feel fearful on separating from a loved one– will often repeat, “I love you” upon separation.

B: Will feel a short wrench on separation, telling your loved one you love them, but then just get on with things post separation

C: Feel deep sadness upon separation; finds it very hard to say goodbye.

Reaction to stress

A: Mainly fear based; anxious, worry alot; if you loose your temper you calm down quickly; you don’t hold grudges


B: Mainly anger based; you feel resentment to those causing the stress; Anger will burn slowly but intensely for a time and its hard to calm down


C: Feel powerless in stressful situations; you get lethargic and want to sleep or eat; takes a lot to irritate you or make you angry but if you get angry do you can hold a grudge. Can be prone to depression

Intellect

A: quick to grasp concepts; if asked a question will often give the wrong answer because your first response is to talk


B: you have a sharp clear intellect and your responses are generally quite accurate


C: Take a while to grasp a new concept, and you process slowly, but when asked a question your answers are very exact.

Memory

A: remembers easily but forgets easily too; good short term recall but poor remote memory


B: remember things easily; don’t usually forget important things; your memory is sometimes described as photographic


C: Never forgets anything; memory like an elephant

Spending habits

A: spend easily; not good at saving; prone to impulse spending; has a tendency to be poor as you love to spend on trifles.


B: spend wisely; like to save; when you spend money its often on luxury items – new jewellery, or items for your home etc; wealth is accumulated by good earnings rather than by good investment but can be both.


C: spend meagrely; can be prone to emotional spending; very good at saving, wealth is more often accumulated by good investment rather than by good earnings – but can be both.

Add up your total scores and click on the one that best matches your results to find out how to make a few changes to help you live in a way that suits your own uniqueness!

Mostly A – Your dominant elements are Air and Space or VATA

Mostly B – Your dominant element is Fire or PITTA

Mostly C – Your dominant elements are Earth and Water or KAPHA

Advanced Yoga

Yoga for experienced practitioners.

Handstand with Yoga Wheel

Gaining confidence to do a handstand away from a wall, can be a challenge. Here is a great way to build that confidence, using a yoga training wheel.

How to do a Headstand Safely

Its so good to get upside down! Gravity assists the lymphatic flow, helping the body move toxins and bacteria to the lymph nodes.
It also strengthens the upper body and improves abdominal tone.

https://www.brighteon.com/5853277607001

Headstand Float Press

Once you’ve mastered a headstand float with bent knees, try straightening your legs. The secret is joint alignment!

Hollow-back Handstand

If you are cool with handstands, try this hollow back version – great for opening the shoulders and chest.

If you enjoy them please comment, like or share! And please ‘Follow’ below so you don’t miss out when I post more!

Yoga for Regular Practitioners

Sun Salutations

A Sun salutation warm up flow.

https://www.brighteon.com/5835867097001

Warrior Flow

Build strength in your lower limbs, core and back. Improve body alignment and train posture. Hone your focus and determination.

https://www.brighteon.com/5837602446001

Pidgeon Flow (with Modifications)

A pigeon pose flow to focus on opening the hips. Includes options for different levels – beginner, intermediate and advanced students.

https://www.brighteon.com/5843205250001

Moon Salutation – Chandra Namaskar

The Sun Salutation (Surya Namaskar) energises and lifts us, but this soothing gentle Moon Salutation, Chandra namaskar , is soothing, cooling and creates a loving sense of calm.

(adapted from Shiva Rea’s version)

https://www.brighteon.com/d46d1306-34eb-406d-b952-b301e981575a

Plow pose (Halasana) slow exit for improving hamstring flexibility

Are you tight in your forward folds? Use this slow exit from Plow (halasana)to lengthen your posterior chain.

If you enjoy them please comment, like or share! And please ‘Follow’ below so you don’t miss out when I post more!

Yoga For Beginners

From yoga in a chair to learning the basics…..

Chair Yoga

A simple routine to practice mobility-increasing yoga in the comfort of your home.
Don’t let your age or ability stop you from enjoying the wonders of yoga!
Practice daily and feel the benefits

Cat and Cow Flow.

A wonderful way to mobilise and lengthen the spine, lengthen the posterior and anterior muscular chains and work the muscles that stabilise the shoulders and hips

If you enjoy them please comment, like or share! And please ‘Follow’ below so you don’t miss out when I post more!

Stress Busting Scones

Everyday we turn on the TV or social media and are bombarded with more things to worry about. The horrors we are presented with, mount daily and with it our stress levels. Stress is still the biggest killer as it keeps us in a state of low-level inflammation, leading to many diseases. Yes we can change our diets, to live healthier lives but right now the combination of a little indulgence made in a very special way, could be just the recipe you need to re-set your nervous system and put your body in a state of buttery bliss – enjoy ❤

Follow this recipe all the way to the very end, and I guarantee your fears and your stress will melt away faster than the butter you spread on them.

Be sure to follow every step precisely for best results!

Time to prepare:

As long as you have available to indulge yourself in the entire experience- preferably a whole leisurely afternoon!

Although these can be whipped up in no time, that’s not the point of this recipe!

Create your workspace:

Take a little time to arrange the area you will be working in. Play some relaxing music, light a little incense, and make sure the room is warm and comfortable.

Prepare your utensils and ingredients, so that everything you need is at your fingertips.

Utensils needed:


• Large bowl
• Spatula or wooden spoon
• Baking tray (lightly buttered)

Ingredients needed:
  • 1 cup of white flour
  • 1 cup of wholewheat flour
  • 1heaped tsp brown sugar
  • 2tsps baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ cup softened butter
  • ½ cup plain yoghurt
  • 1 tbsp water

METHOD

Wash hands thoroughly in mild soap and warm water.

While you do this, imagine you are washing away your worries; allow the water to take them down into the drains and away from you, watch them disappear.

In your large bowl, add all the dry ingredients.

Chop your butter into small pieces and add them to the flour mix.

Notice how golden the little knobs of butter are against the flour. Imagine the taste of the buttery goodness that will become part of your creation!

Immerse your hands into the mix and pick up the buttery pieces in your fingers gently mixing and dispersing them within the flour mix.

Each tiny piece of butter feels cool in your fingers before it melts into the dry ingredients. Slowly the flour mixture is transformed into moist golden breadcrumbs. Stop for a moment and let them run through your fingers!

Now add in the yoghurt. You can do it slowly or all in one go, but use your fingers! Feel the cold yoghurt and imagine the creamy taste it will bring to your scones. Mix the creamy yoghurt into the buttery breadcrumbs and observe the way the mixture changes into a soft pliable dough. If it is a little dry still add up to  a tbsp. of water to moisten it, and work that in slowly. If it needs more add a little more, but listen to your hands – they will tell you if your consistency is right. It should be soft, and pliable, moist but not soggy.

Its not necessary to knead it for a long time, but a light kneading not only binds the ingredients better, but it gives you time to knead some love into your dough. Who are they for? Your family, your friends? or just for you? Think of those you are making these for and put a good intention through your hands for them to experience joy when they taste your creation.

Now separate them into 8 balls, and roll them between your palms, smoothing their surfaces, as you roll them. How do they feel as you do this?

Press them gently to flatten the balls into scone shapes and lay them onto a lightly buttered tray.

Bake for 20 mins at 180 degrees. Use this time to clear away your work area.

Be sure to keep inhaling deeply to draw in that heavenly smell of baking scones!

Remove from oven and leave to cool.

Indulging!

Make a pot of your favourite tea. Serve your scones with lots of butter and homemade jam.

And the most important part of this recipe, is to savour every mouthful. Don’t rush; enjoy each bite! What can you taste in your scones? The creaminess of the yoghurt; the melted golden butter or the love that you pressed in as you made them?

And how do you feel? My hope is that you feel calm, relaxed and that you have a feeling of beautiful bliss within you. ❤

Back to School – A Parent’s Quandary

Parents have concerns over sending children back this autumn.

Once you become a parent, your life changes in a myriad of ways. You no longer become the centre of your own universe. From the moment you hold your child in your arms, you know that now there exists another life that matters more than your own life. At the most basic level this is our expressed desire, our inherent need to keep our race going. We believe in humanity and we want to thrive and flourish. Protecting our young is the most important thing we can do as humans.

Our parental love is being tested now as parents feel varying levels of fear as the school term draws near. The mounting pressure to get them back to school from our own needs to go to work, to the kids needs to regain normality in their lives; the fear of sending them into a place with so many other people, that could make them vulnerable; the fear of the “new measures” that will be put in place and how it will effect them; the fear that something might happen to them, is overwhelming, but the push to send them back to their school life is also strong.

All through my life as a mother I have felt the conflicts of societal pressures and my own values. Society strongly suggested I should push my children to study hard, get good grades, go to college, get more good grades, go to uni, get a degree, so that they can get a good job, buy a nice house and get a good deal on a mortgage. We have been taught that these things will bring happiness and security to ourselves and our children. And to some extent this is true. Having a well paid, respected career is a good thing to want for them, but we also need to teach them that there should be a balance between working and living. Too often the corporate based careers bring long hours, long commutes, siting at a desk for hours at a time, all with a huge helping of work related stress. Perhaps it was my own childhood experience of my dad working long hours in the city, and seeing what the stress of giving us a lovely home in a nice place did to his health, that made me not choose that path myself, or want it for my children. I didn’t push them to get good grades. Of course I encouraged them to study and do their school work, but we also really encouraged them to play sport, and to have full social lives. Their school life from my perspective was much more about an education in relationships and people, through making lifelong friendships and developing team fellowship.

They got good grades; not top of the class, but they both did well. They both tried college but neither chose to remain in education longer than a year after leaving school. They both have non-corporate based careers that make them happy without undue stress, loving partners, and great friends.

I should say how blessed I feel that my children are no longer school age, and becoming a grandmother is still hopefully part of my future, so I do not have the fear that parents are facing today.

But I would like to send you a message, that I hope might bring a little strength to parents of school children right now. Remember that no-one cares about your children like you do. Not a teacher, a doctor or a politician. These people are there to do a job; to deliver whichever curriculum, prescription or agenda they are imbued with the task of giving. They maybe the nicest of people with the best intentions, but they are not you, and they were not there the moment you first held your child in your arms. Only you know what is best for your child, and that decision must come from your heart. If any decision you make doesn’t feel right, or brings with it a sense of unease, then listen to your heart and change it. Your children are connected to you; only you know what is the best for them.

I wish you good health, clarity and calm and most of all love ❤

Sex in the New World

Sex between a loving couple includes affection, warmth, and a merging of two energies, that entwine and for a while unite them as one. It is far from the primal act we see in the animal kingdom, where sex is mainly used for dominance or impregnation. As more evolved beings we bring emotional intelligence into the act, that makes it into the most important communication between a pair of lovers.

Sexual intercourse is the most intimate and cherished experience we can share with a loving partner. Sometimes known, as coupling its dictionary definition is “a joining together”. In order to create a bond that unites two consenting adults, you have to actually be together.

However we are fast moving into a world that would prefer us not to be able to experience this wonderful gift, which we humans can share. With distancing becoming the way in which we are now told to live, the guidelines even trespass into this most sacred of acts.

According to the Terrance Higgins Trust, in a BBC article published this week, we now need “to balance our need for sex and intimacy with the risks of the spread of COVID-19”. The Trust has also published advice suggesting people avoid kissing, wear a face covering and choose positions that aren’t face-to-face during sex. Admittedly this advice is mainly aimed at people having sex outside of their home, but it applies to anyone who doesn’t live in your household. I’m sure most couples who don’t live together will overlook this and continue to enjoy a happy, healthy and intimate sex-life together, but what message do statements like these send to young couples starting out together, or to appropriate-aged children learning about the world of sex? To suggest that we as sentient humans deny ourselves and our relationships intimacy because we may get sick, is akin to saying only eat processed food because all natural food may contain living organisms that could make you sick! Of course we should wash our food just as we should practice safe sex, especially if the relationship isn’t long term, or serious. But deeply satisfying sex, isn’t a mechanical function. Its not about just gratifying urges, with a mindless exchange of bodily fluids – its about deeply connecting with your partner, and allowing the energy to flow naturally and beautifully between you. This isn’t a message that can be heard in these cold, emotionless guidelines.

While its important to teach our adolescent youth about safe sex, its even more important to teach them about the deeper meaning of sex between two loving adults – perhaps even more so in these current times where distancing is being sold to us as a way of life. It is now more important than ever that our children learn about healthy, loving connections that they should experience in all their relationships, but also that the intimacy in a sexual bond between two adults is beautiful, healthy and the most natural thing in the world.

I feel as though we need to hold on to the fundamentals in our lives, which make us human, because if we let that go, we are no longer living, but merely existing.

I wish you clarity and calm, but most of all love ❤