Wyda yoga is the European answer to the Far Eastern yoga tradition. The practice comes from the Celtic druids. Practiced in nature, it should bring body and mind into harmony and keep fit into old age.
Yoga is thousands of years old. This teaching, which connects body and mind, has its origins in India. Here in Europe, we don’t even have to look to the Far East to find a holistic philosophy.
Wyda is the name of European yoga, which was already practiced by the Celtic druids as part of traditional European medicine (TEM).
What is Wyda Yoga?
The druids – priests, healers and seers of the Celts – called their physical and spiritual practice Wyda. The teaching has a lot in common with yoga and QiGong and is still only actively practiced and carried on by a few families in Ireland and Scotland.
In contrast to the normal Celtic population, the druids lived to an advanced age, which, it is said, they owe to Wyda.
Unfortunately, most of the ancient knowledge of the Celtic elite has now been lost, so today’s Wyda is not an exact tradition, but rather a reference.
But the basic idea is the same: The exercises, more of a movement meditation than sweaty flows, strive for the harmony of body, mind and soul.
Unlike the Indian yoga teachings, Wyda speaks of three energy fields. There are
- the vital field (the hormone system)
- the emotional field (feelings and states of mind) and
- the mental field (brain function, senses and thought processes).
The aim is to harmonize these three fields through physical exercises, singing and meditation so that an inner and outer balance is created. The origin is practiced outdoors, for example on a meadow or in the forest.
Wyda Yoga Effect and benefits
According to lore, the druids practiced Wyda on a daily basis. The regular training should boost the metabolism, clear the mind and improve intuition.
The exercises are gentle and easy on the joints, so they can also be performed in old age.
The holistic approach not only ensures physical fitness but also spiritual growth.
In addition, the proximity to nature strengthens an understanding of the environment – an important factor, especially in today’s world.
Who is Wyda Yoga suitable for?
Wyda is suitable for everyone who does not want to practice run-of-the-mill yoga – especially for people who are close to nature and interested in spirituality. Anyone who has always wanted to immerse themselves in the history of the Celts or deal with traditional European medicine will be able to identify with Wyda Yoga.
How and where can I learn Wyda?
The exercises in Wyda are reminiscent of the asanas of the traditional Indian yoga teaching Hatha, but are simpler in execution.
Native animal species once served as inspiration for the physical exercises, and meditative sounds are also hummed when performed. The body begins to vibrate through these tones, so that emotional blockages can be released.
It is best to complete Wyda – like the Celts once did – in the open air, this is where the effect should be strongest. Alternatively, natural products such as stones, earth or leaves can be worn on the body or draped around the practice area.
There are Wyda practices for any time of the day or night, as well as rituals involving the sun and the moon.
For beginners, the so-called druid’s fist offers an easy start: Spread your arms out to the side and stretch out your fingers, then move your arms together in front of your chest and close your hands into a fist. Now your fists should be touching in front of your chest.
What equipment do I need?
If you want to do it like the druids, you don’t need much for the Wyda practice, as it’s best practiced in the great outdoors, with no frills.
But it gets a little more comfortable with a travel yoga mat that is extra light for transport. When it comes to clothing, you should be guided by the outside temperatures – it’s better to dress a little warmer, as you won’t sweat too much.
Thermal leggings and a fleece top are ideal for autumn and spring. In the summer months, tights and a bra or shirt will do.