By Atul Vyas
The constitution is called ‘prakarti’ in Sanskrit, meaning nature. The expression of the basic five elements in the body is the constitution. This basic constitution of an individual remains unchanged during the lifetime, as it is genetically determined. The combination of elements present at birth remains constant.
There is a constant interaction between the internal and external environment. The external environment comprises the cosmic forces (macrocosm) while the internal environment consists of and governed by the principles of vata-pitta-kapha. One can successfully counteract the changes in the external environment through management and manipulation of internal environment viz. vata-pitta-kapha through lifestyle changes and yoga. One of the constituent or principles of the internal environment is kapha.
Kapha is a sanskrit word meaning phlegm, meaning keeping together. It is made up of two elements: water and earth. Due to its composition kapha is more stable in nature than other principles or doshas vata and pitta.
Kapha in its normal state is responsible for the strength and formation of the body. The main characteristics of kapha are described as heavy, cool, sweet, etc. When kapha is out of balance, it brings about flabbiness, impotence and sterility, weariness, lethargy, immobility and loss of function of the joints, etc.
One of the yogic interventions to balance kapha is Dhanurasana or bow pose. It is called bow pose because in this pose one has to bend the body to look like a bow.
- Lie face down with legs together and and then bend your knees
- Take hold of your ankles with hands, keeping arms straight
- Now, while exhaling raise your heads, chest and thighs off the ground by pulling your ankles
- Breath normally
- Comeback to normal after 10 seconds
- Balances kapha dosha
- Cures acidity
- Cures constipation
- Cures flatulence
- Efficacious in case of asthma
- Reduces abdominal fat
- Increases peristalsis
Note of Caution
Those suffering from high blood pressure, angina pectoris, ulcerative colitis should avoid this pose.
Atul Vyas likes to be called a “Yoga Scientist”. He is a celebrity yoga trainer and has trained several top Hollywood and Bollywood stars. He has trained for years under many eminent yoga gurus including his illustrious mother Daya Vyas, the first lady yoga guru of India.