Exploring the Elements–Wind | Banyan Botanicals

Supporting Your Ayurvedic Lifestyle


Exploring the Elements—Wind

posted in Ayurveda 101
Take the Quiz

Take our Prakriti Quiz to determine your Ayurvedic constitution

Take the Quiz

Welcome to Exploring the Elements—our 5 part series devoted to describing the power of the 5 elements which Ayurvedic tradition believes to be the foundation of life: Earth, Water, Fire, Wind, and Space. Transform your view of the world around you, and your own health, with a new understanding of the elements! 


Wind element, sometimes called air element, drives movement in all of its forms. Most of the qualities of Wind element can be felt in the cold wind of autumn and winter. Wind element carries the qualities cold, dry, rough, irregular, unstable (mobile), subtle, and light. Sound familiar? That's right, vata dosha is made up of Wind and Space!

All of the movements that happen in the body—from peristalsis in the intestines to the movement of thoughts and sensations—are produced by Wind element.

Smooth Sailing Wind

Because Wind element is movement, it is also power. When you express undistorted Wind element you have great, unforced capacity for work. Your effortless stamina and enthusiasm for life arises naturally. You feel motivated and creative because the subtlety of Wind element conveys inspiration. Healthy Wind element also results in great capacity for abstraction and connection to unseen things. Focus comes naturally.

With healthy Wind element, all of the movements and cycles in the body occur with a regular rhythm and timeliness. There are neither excess movements in the intestines, nor trembling sensations or spasms in the muscles. Sleep comes easily and is undisturbed through the night, and life’s difficulties are handled without anxiety or excess stress.


Erratic Wind

We live in a world that rewards forcefulness. The number of hours we spend doing things that don’t directly relate to our actual health and well-being usually far out-weigh the time we spend just being human. The habits of over-doing, multi-tasking, and spending long hours in front of a computer contribute greatly to disturbed Wind element. In addition, Wind element may build to excess when you indulge in raw or processed food, intensive exercise, or drug use.

With imbalanced Wind elelment you may look, from the outside, like you “have it all,” but internally a monumental struggle might be taking place.

It can feel like an addiction to always “improving” or constantly analyzing, worrying, or planning in an effort to control life. Thinking about life replaces actually living it.

Alternatively, you may feel flat, depleted, and exhausted. You might lose your sense of enthusiasm and joy and the ability to connect to your life and circumstances.

Some Remedies

For imbalanced Wind element:

  • Underdoing—practice saying “no”
  • Slow yoga practice with long, deep holds; heart opening postures
  • Yoga Nidra
  • Turn off electronics after sundown
  • Nadi Shodhana pranayama
  • Sleep
  • Regularity and rhythm
  • Warm, cooked food
  • Abhyanga
  • Spending time with close, trusted, undemanding friends 

You May Also Like...

Honoring Your Essence

All day long, the colors, shapes, and images in your surroundings profoundly impact your sense of well-being—for better OR for worse. The ancient sages of Yoga and Ayurveda understood this very well, and they identified systems of symbols and images that influence the mind, body, and spirit in specific ways. Perhaps you have seen some of these beautiful geometric images on the walls of a yoga studio or the office of an Ayurvedic practitioner. Maybe you’ve even practiced concentrating on them for a meditation session. Continue Reading >

Exploring the Elements—Water

Water element is the principle of cohesion. In the body, this emerges as nourishment, growth, and lubrication. Water element cools, moistens, adheres, soothes, softens, smoothes, dulls, and spreads. When you express clarified Water element, you feel nourished by, and connected to, your community. It helps you feel content, express yourself calmly and smoothly, and allow things to “roll off your back.” Continue Reading >

Exploring the Elements—Earth

Earth element expresses as stability. The qualities of Earth Element are cool, stable, heavy, dry, rough, gross, dense, dull, and hard. In the body, this emerges as growth, accumulation, and support; the muscle tissue, fat tissue, and hard part of the bones depend heavily upon Earth element. Continue Reading >