Tethered to the Earth (27-mins) Hatha Yoga
A slow-moving hatha yoga class that stays low to the ground to bring you closer to the earth element. This class asks that you bring your awareness to your body and envision that you’re tethered to the earth. Vata dosha is associated with faster-paced movement and over-thinking; the poses and visualization in this class work to bring Vata back into the body to create a space and quiet in the mind.
Style: Hatha Yoga
Props: 2 blocks, 1 bolster
Focus: Slow-moving class to pacify Vata
Location: Lila Familia Production Studio, Vancouver, BC
Pacifying Vata Dosha
The mind is swift and active in Vata personalities; moods change quickly, and you’re affected by how you feel and react to stressors by becoming anxious or over-excited. In terms of body type, Vata tends to be finer-boned and long-limbed. Vata has trouble putting on weight and is weaker at the joints. Cold feet and hands, dry skin, and constipation or gas are requisites for Vata constitution.
Vata tends to be disorganized; energy comes in bursts, and when it fizzles out, Vata needs to ground to replenish—which is hard for Vata to do. Vata loves being around people; this personality recharges through being with others and is easily excited. Vata has trouble sleeping; waking frequently is not uncommon with intense and vivid dreams.
Vata, in harmony, appears grounded and calm as the mind seeks and soars, exploring new ways to create and contribute to the world. Restorative and Yin are two styles of yoga that help ground Vata when out of balance. Gardening, walks in the forest, meditation, and Qi Gong are other activities that help ground Vata.
To learn more about how to eat and move to balance Vata, look at our Ayurvedic Nutrition Guide for Vata dosha.
Seated, breathe deeply into your body and envision your legs and seat tethering you to the earth.
Rub your palms together to create a bit of friction and heat, do this three times and place your palms in different places on your body to focus on that part as you feel the heat.
- Place your palms over your eyes
- Place your palms over your heart
- Place your palms on your lower belly
Seated pigeon pose or double pigeon pose
- Take your hand and thread your fingers through your toes
- Gently wind out the ankle to stretch out the foot, toes, and ankle
- Flex and point the toes to stretch the top and bottom of the foot
- Clap hands at the foot, calf, and thigh to stimulate circulation
Seated with toes tucked to stretch the soles of the feet
- Tuck chin to chest to open the back of the neck
- Clasp hands at the small of the back to release the tops of the shoulders
Seated bring hands to the sky with toes tucked
- Bring one hand to the opposite elbow as you tuck the hand behind the head to stretch the tricep of the extended arm
Tabletop pose and tap feet on the ground to release
Seated cat pose to release the back of the heart and spine
- Round the back body
- Grab knees with hands and pull against the legs to extend the stretch
- Breath into the back of the spine
Tabletop pose and tap feet on the ground to release the feet
Lay on the belly with the bolster underneath the low abdomen; this pose releases the low back.
- Take legs as wide as the mat, point the toes
- Arms wide in a cactus shape
- One cheek to the earth
- Breath into the upper back
Childs pose with triceps and forehead on the bolster
- Knees wide as the mat, feet together and point the toes
- Hook forearms and elbows to bolster
- Take hands to prayer and extend the prayer to the sky
- Rest forehead on the bolster and let your body become heavy
Sphynx pose on the bolster OR the ground
- Press forearms and palms to the bolster or the ground
- Feet as wide as the mat, point the toes
- Chin to the chest, let the head get heavy toward the ground
- Breathe into the back of the neck and the shoulders
Release upper chest to the bolster and rest head and arms OR on the ground
- Release the upper body towards the ground
- Spread your breath through the whole body, breathe into the points making contact with the earth
Visualization and Body Scan
- Take the two blocks to the back of the knees to support the legs
- Take your bolster to the lower abdomen to add a bit of weight to feel grounded
Envision all the points of your body that are touching the earth getting heavier, almost as if they were nuzzling a bit deeper into the ground.
Clara guides you through a body scan. This meditation style provides deep rest that helps with anxiety, stress, adrenal fatigue, and insomnia. The body scan covers the entire body; as Clara says each body part, bring your awareness to that specific area and try to relax and breathe into the whole space of your body.