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How Exercise Can Help Balance Your Ayurvedic Dosha

How Exercise Can Help Balance Your Ayurvedic Dosha

Ayurveda, the traditional medicine of India, has a long history of viewing exercise, or Vyayama, as an important part of maintaining health. The Charaka Samhita, a key ayurvedic text, states that exercise is essential for keeping the body in balance and preventing disease. 

According to ayurveda, there are three main types of energy, or doshas, in the body: Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Exercise is seen as a way to maintain balance among these doshas. Ayurvedic practitioners believe that each type of exercise has different effects on the body and should be tailored to the individual's needs. For example, Vata types should avoid strenuous exercise, while Pitta types should focus on cooling and calming activities. Kapha types, on the other hand, benefit from energizing and invigorating exercises.

How To Maintain Balance According To Your Dosha

We all have all three doshas in our bodies, but one is usually more dominant than the others. That's why it's important to know your dosha type so that you can maintain balance.

When our doshas are in balance, we feel good both physically and mentally. We have plenty of energy, a good appetite and a positive outlook on life. But when one or more of our doshas become imbalanced, we may start to feel run down, anxious or depressed.

There are many ways to bring your doshas back into balance. Ayurvedic practitioners often recommend lifestyle changes such as diet, exercise and meditation.

If you're not sure what your dosha is, find out with this quick quiz. Once you know, follow these tips to help you stay in balance.


Vata types should focus on grounding activities. That means lots of time spent outside in nature, eating warm and cooked foods, and getting enough sleep. Exercise should be moderate and calming, like yoga or walking.

For vata types, regular exercise is key to maintaining balance. You tend to be flighty and easily distracted, so a consistent workout routine will help ground you. But don't overdo it – too much exercise can actually increase anxiety levels.


Pittas need to find a balance between cooling and heating activities. Too much heat will aggravate Pitta, but so will too much cold. A mix of both is ideal. As far as exercise goes, Pittas should stick to cooler workouts like swimming or biking. And don’t forget to add some relaxation time into your schedule!

If you're a pitta type, be careful not to overdo it with exercise. You tend to be competitive and push yourself hard, but too much exercise can lead to burnout. Balance your workout routine with some calming activities like yoga or meditation.


Kapha's do best with invigorating and energizing activities. Kapha types tend to be more sluggish, so it's important to get moving and get the blood flowing.

Yoga pose with text overlay saying "find your dosha type"

Exercising According To Seasons

Due to the fact that each dosha type thrives differently through each season, there may be months where you don’t feel particularly inspired to get your body moving or at least to move in the same way as in other seasons. This is totally normal, but you just need to be aware of it and take steps to maintain a healthy lifestyle that is best suited to your type.

Below are the seasons in which each dosha is their better selves, along with some simple pointers to help you stay active when you’re not feeling your best.


If you’ve ever been told you’re “highly strung” or “spacey,” chances are you have a vata body type. People with vata dosha tend to be thin and light, with delicate features. They’re also the most energetic of the three doshas, making them great at sports and other physical activities.

But all that energy can also mean vata's are prone to anxiety and stress. They tend to get more restless and in line with the characteristics of fall, which can make them dry and cold. 

That’s why it’s important for them to get regular exercise, both to burn off excess energy and to keep their minds calm. Fall is a great time to start an exercise routine, as the cooler weather provides the perfect opportunity to get outdoors and get active.

Keeping a routine of working out and eating small, warm and regular meals throughout the day can help this dosha type stay in balance.

There are a few things to keep in mind when choosing exercises for vata types. First, vata types should avoid anything too strenuous or high-impact, as this can aggravate their already-active nervous system. Second, they should focus on grounding activities that help them connect with their bodies and the earth.

So what exercises are best for vatas?

Some great exercises for vata types include walking, swimming, yoga, and Tai Chi. These activities are all relatively low-impact but still provide a good workout.


If you’re a pitta type, you might be wondering what the best exercises are for your body type. According to ayurveda, pittas are characterized by their ability to generate heat. This means that they tend to get overheated easily and need to be careful not to overdo it when exercising. 

Summer is the best season for people with pitta dosha, according to ayurveda, because the hot weather helps balance out their fiery nature. But they should avoid strenuous exercise in hot weather. Therefore it is best for pitta types to exercise in the cool weather of spring and autumn, avoiding strenuous exercise. Instead, they should focus on cooling activities such as yoga and swimming.

Fall is a good season for pitta types, as the cooler weather helps to balance their heat. They can participate in more vigorous exercise during this time, such as running or hiking. However, they should be sure to stay warm enough to avoid aggravating their Vata constitution.

The best exercises for pittas are very much the same as those for vata: swimming, yoga, pilates and walking, especially in warmer weather. Allowing them to stay cool while still getting in a good workout.


If you have a kapha body type according to ayurveda, you tend to be on the heavier side and have more curves. You might find it harder to lose weight because of your slower metabolism. But don't worry, there are still plenty of ways to get in shape.

The kapha body type is the most solid and stable of the three ayurvedic body types. People with a kapha constitution tend to be heavy-set and muscular, with large bones and thick skin. They have slow metabolisms and tend to sleep deeply.

Kapha types should exercise in the cold weather of winter and should avoid exercising in the hot and humid weather of summer. The best season for kapha dosha is spring. This is the time when nature is renewing itself, and kapha people can benefit from this energy by doing some cleansing and detoxifying practices. 

The best exercises for kapha dosha are biking, gymnastics, dancing and long-distance walking. These allow them to get their heart rates up and challenges them mentally and physically.

Ayurveda is a way of life and aims to help people become their best selves by raising awareness of our innate characteristics and habits. These things can either hinder us or free us.


Written by Caryn Mackenzie on behalf of Turmeric Zone

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