Happy New Year!

You’ve decided it is that time of year to begin making resolutions to improve your health and life with exercise and better health choices.  Imagine finding the exercises that will work best for you.

Did you know there are better exercises based on your blood type and different temperaments?  Well, there are!  In this article, we will consider some of those to help you figure out what your physical, mental, and emotional states will best respond to.

Exercises by Blood Type

Your blood gives an idea of your evolutionary line.  It affects how your body reacts to what you put in it and what you do to it.

Type A

The DNA in A’s resembles ancient farmers.  They are active, but did less intense activities like planting, tending, and harvesting crops.  Interestingly, A’s tend to have higher stress hormone levels which are increased with strenuous exercises.  Because type A’s often want to use more psychological energy in their workout, it is helpful to include things like stretching, calming, and focusing activities.

Workout choices that A’s tend to respond well to include:
  • Yoga
  • Tai Chi
  • Pilates
  • Calisthenics
  • Stretching
  • Light jogging
  • Walking
  • Light swimming
  • Light hiking

Type B

The DNA in B’s resembles ancient nomads.  They moved often, but at a more leisurely pace than the caveman O.  They also traveled in groups.  B types like physical exercises that also challenge their minds and love to be with other people.

Workout choices that B’s tend to respond well to include:
  • Group sports (baseball, football, soccer, softball, hockey, etc)
  • Tennis
  • Golf
  • Cycling
  • Resistance training
  • Martial Arts
  • Hiking

Type O

The DNA in O’s resembles ancient cavemen.  They are active–hunting and defending to stay alive.  O blood types like and respond well to the most aggressive workouts.  In fact, they like to workout for the sake of just working out.  Interestingly, O’s often have slower circulation and are more muscular than other blood types, and the exercise routines they choose help to keep their bodily fluids flowing.  Strenuous exercises increase dopamine which helps to relax O’s and lowers the adrenaline in the blood.

Workout choices that O’s tend to respond well to include:
  • Swimming
  • Jogging/Running
  • Cycling
  • Hiking
  • Weight lifting
  • Interval training

Type AB

The DNA in AB’s shares elements of both type A and type B.  They are nomadic farmers.  AB is the rarest of all blood types, and less than 5% of the world’s population has AB blood.  It is estimated AB blood type emerged about 1,000 years ago.  Variety is key to keeping an AB engaged.

Workout choices that AB’s tend to respond well to include (see both A and B for other suggestions, since AB can mix and match):
  • Group sports (baseball, football, soccer, softball, hockey, etc)
  • Tennis
  • Golf
  • Cycling
  • Swimming
  • Jogging
  • Yoga
  • Pilates
  • Tai Chi
  • Walking
  • Hiking

Exercises by Dosha

If you haven’t taken our quiz, What is your dosha?, take the time now to complete it so you have an idea which dosha you are.

Ayurveda seeks balance, so what you may be naturally drawn to for exercising may not be what you need to bring about balance in your dosha.

Vata

Vatas do well having a rhythm and routine to their exercise plans.  Vatas have a higher energy in general and enjoy moving, often fast!  They often enjoy losing themselves in an exercise that literally takes their breath away (aka they like breathing hard!).  However, vatas really need warming, steady, grounding, and strengthening workouts.

Workout choices to help balance vatas include:
  • Slow strength straining
  • TRX bands
  • Barre work (and other balance exercises)
  • Stretching
  • Tai Chi
  • Yoga
  • Dancing
  • Swimming
  • Walking
  • Rowing

Pitta

Pittas are athletes.  They have strong bodies, love working their muscles, and have great stamina.  They love to feel the burn, gain muscle easily, and enjoy things like boot-camps, crossfits, and boxing.  However, Pittas should include non-competitive and relaxing workouts to help balance their dosha with calming and cooling exercises.  In fact, hardcore exercises increase their stress hormones.

Workout choices to help balance pittas include:
  • Swimming
  • Water polo
  • Kayaking
  • Yoga (NOT hot)
  • Pilates
  • Stretching
  • Light walking
  • Light hiking
  • Friendly group sports (basketball, volleyball, tennis)

Kapha

Kaphs are earthy people.  They have to work hard to convince themselves to work out.  This means they often gain weight easily and can become heavy, sluggish, and lethargic.  To combat this, exercise is absolutely vital to kapha health.  Keep it interesting to help avoid boredom and stay motivated.  Changing workouts often can be helpful.  Kaphas do well having a rhythm and routine to their exercise plans.  Kaphas will particularly benefit by exercising during their hours of 6am to 10 am.  Hang in there with exercising, kapha, because the more you do it, the more you will find you love it because of the stimulation to your body and mind.  Kaphas have the highest endurance of all doshas, so push it!  Getting hot and sweaty is very helpful for kaphas.  An important note is to avoid weights/strength training as a kapha if you want to lose weight because it doesn’t help you lose weight.  Sweating and intense workouts will help with weight loss for kaphas.

Workout choices to help balance kaphas include:
  • Walking
  • Hiking
  • Cardio
  • Aerobics
  • Hot yoga and Vinyasa yoga
  • High intensity interval training
  • Spinning
  • Rowing
  • Rope Classes
  • Tabata

Exercises by Humoral Temperament

If you haven’t taken our quiz, What is your humoral temperament?, take the time now to complete it so you have an idea which Galen temperament you are..

Phlegmatic

Peace-loving, kind, thoughtful phlegmatics do well with calming exercises.  In general, phlegmatics are good at all types of exercises and can excel with dedication–especially at endurance sports.  Working out helps to clear up congestion, and they do well in warmer and dryer exercise environments.  Working out with a friend without competition can be helpful.  Aim to increase balance, strength, and maintain weight.

Workout choices that help to balance phlegmatics include:
  • Running/Walking (especially long distance)
  • Aerobics
  • Rowing
  • Yoga (consider hot)
  • Pilates
  • Biking

Choleric

Cholerics take charge and will go after what they want.  Because they are go-getters, they can carry around extra tension.  Cholerics are competitive and enjoy comparing themselves to others.  They can be restless and full of energy.  Challenging workouts can be helpful for cholerics.  Naturally extroverted, group workouts can be really motivating for cholerics.  Cooler and moister workout environments may be helpful.  Aim to warm up the body, increase the heart rate, and increase circulation during workouts.

Workout choices that help to balance cholerics include:
  • Swimming
  • Water polo
  • Skiing
  • Brisk walking/Jogging
  • Weight training
  • Hiking
  • Mountain climbing
  • Spinning classes
  • Boot camps
  • Yoga (not hot)
  • Tai Chi
  • Kickboxing

Sanguine

Bubbly, social, and party-lovers, sanguines do well in group classes.  There is fun in working out with others in a friendly atmosphere.  If they can’t find a good class, having a personal instructor and exercising at busy times at a gym will help with motivation for sanguines.  Cooler, drier environments can be helpful for sanguine types.  Aim to warm up the body, increase the heart rate, and increase circulation during workouts.

Workout choices that help to balance sanguines include:
  • Swimming
  • Water polo
  • Skiing
  • Brisk walking/Jogging
  • Weight training
  • Hiking
  • Mountain climbing
  • Zumba and other group classes

Melancholic

Cautious and introverted melancholics tend to do well with solitary exercise routines.  However, group classes may be helpful on many levels to bring melancholics out of their personal shells.  Loud, busy times at the gym do not tend to encourage melancholics to enjoy working out.  Home workouts or outside and working out in beautiful surroundings is much more suited to melancholics.  Working out in warmer and moister environments can be helpful for melancholics.  Aim for agility, inner exhilaration, poise, and agility in workouts.

Workout choices that help to balance melancholics include:
  • Yoga (hot)
  • Long walks or runs
  • Short hikes
  • Light bicycling
  • Home gyms

In the end, the best exercise is the one you will do, and that may change daily.  There are always exceptions to any rule.  Do not judge yourself.  Do not give up hope.  Just get out there and do what you are able to each day, even if it means taking the day off!

What about you?  What exercises do you enjoy?:  What exercises should you be including more of?

Please don’t hesitate to schedule an appointment if you need further assistance.

Note: Everything here is for information only. This is not meant to treat or diagnose any medical condition. Seek a qualified medical professional.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.