Elements of Āyurvedic Coaching

What coaching might look like for you

Routine

“There are certain kinds of food that produce a certain change in the mind. We see it every day. There are other sorts which produce a change in the body, and in the long run have a tremendous effect on the mind. It is a great thing to learn. A good deal of the misery we suffer is occasioned by the food we take. We find that after a heavy and indigestible meal it is very hard to control the mind; it is running, running all the time. There are certain foods which are exciting. If we eat such food, we find that we cannot control the mind. It is obvious that after drinking a large quantity of wine, or other alcoholic beverage, people find that their mind cannot be controlled; it runs away from their control.” 

 

Swami Vivekananda

Digestion

The digestive system is the root of health in Āyurveda, so we usually start here.

First we clear the system of toxins, build up, and excess withe dietary and lifestyle adjustments. Sometimes herbs are utilized in this process.

We tend to the digestive fire to maximize digestive capacity and nutrient absorption. 

As the system clears and the body becomes nourished, energy levels stabilize and we are able to assess other problem areas. 

“There are certain kinds of food that produce a certain change in the mind. We see it every day. There are other sorts which produce a change in the body, and in the long run have a tremendous effect on the mind. It is a great thing to learn. A good deal of the misery we suffer is occasioned by the food we take. We find that after a heavy and indigestible meal it is very hard to control the mind; it is running, running all the time. There are certain foods which are exciting. If we eat such food, we find that we cannot control the mind. It is obvious that after drinking a large quantity of wine, or other alcoholic beverage, people find that their mind cannot be controlled; it runs away from their control.” 

-Swami Vivekananda

Nervous System

In Āyurveda, routine stabilizes the body. It provides a firm ground from which action that is beneficial can be taken. It is through this connection to the present that we can make choices that are not overtly influenced by our personal history and its traumas, or by the karmas of our ancestors, families, communities, and so on.

There are daily routines (dinacharya), seasonal routines (rṭucarya), and rituals that help to maintain balance in the body, mind, spirit, and being.

Routines based on the position of the sun in the sky because the sun is associated with energy in the body.

 

A daily routine consists of waking at the same time every day (with the sunrise), eating at the same time every day (when the sun is at its maximum), and sleeping at the same time (shortly after sunset). The connection between routine and vāta is essential to health because vāta, the energy of movement, is best maintained through predictability within the organism. We can think of it this way: if the body knows when to expect food because it is fed at the same time every day, then it will ready itself for digestion, absorption, and assimilation in time to receive a meal. When we surprise the body by feeding it when it is not ready to digest, like when it is still full from the previous meal or when it hasn’t yet eliminated food from the previous day, then it may or may not be prepared to break food down, distinguish waste from nutrients, or even to move waste through the body. It could hold onto the food, leaving it unprocessed and rancid in the system, thinking more will not come later because it was fed again within a short time. This is an interruption in the cycle, a disruption to the routines established within the organism, routines based on time of day/position of the sun that are seen across the animal kingdom, of which we humans are part.