I spent three weeks in Jaipur and my goal was to learn the fundamental principles of Ayurveda, how they relate to the practice of yoga asanas and to experience the Panchakarma treatment.
For three full weeks, the competent doctors and staff at Chakrapani Ayurvedic Clinic and Research Center took careful care of administering basic Ayurvedic knowledge to me as well as providing me with Panchakarma treatment, so that I experience, first hand, what I was studying.
I had set up my own study program with my subjects of interest and enjoyed, for most of my time in the classroom, private classes with the different doctors. Their enthusiasm, application, and their common spirit to push back the limit of knowledge, enticed me to pose a multitude of questions and to insist on points that might not have been understood otherwise.
As a yoga teacher and therapist, I am glad I had some knowledge of Sanskrit and of the basic philosophy at the root of yoga, starting with Patanjali, the eight limbs of yoga and the yamas and niyamas. As it turns out, the terminology is referred to in Sanskrit words, so even though after three weeks, you have almost assimilated the vocabulary which comes back, it is rough at the beginning, as your mind wants to be present and follow the concatenation of underlying principles and ideas.
I learnt a lot between the theory and the practice, every single day, so much that it takes time for them to sink in. I am very glad I did this.
At the same time as I was taking my classes, I was given the Panchakarma treatment. Learning how to recognize your constitutional type is key to the understanding of Ayurveda and panchakarma. Everyday,I was taken care of for my treatment for almost 3 hours. Even though I was not really doing this for ailments, I felt my underlying arthritis go down gradually, my eczema subside completely and my mind calming down instead of being perpetually agitated. Following your prescribed vegetarian diet during the treatment is crucial and taking your remedies make a huge difference. Even after 2 months, I still feel the benefits of my treatment. People seeing me told me I had a glow, I had rejuvenated, etc. And truly, you may not immediately feel the benefits of the treatment, but it might occur later that you feel your body and your have been rebooted, just like a computer.
My experience was full and very satisfactory. I adore all these passionate doctors who dealt with me and my questions. All the staff is very professional and will go far to please you. I would encourage potential patients to also take some classes in order to understand more deeply what panchakarma is about: culinary classes with an emphasis on the use of spices for health, classes about the constitutional types and classes that refer to philosophy. This is not an experience that stops once you are back to your country, you need to revive it to remind your body and your mind about the necessity of your own well-being.