Warrior I

Sanskrit Name: Virabhadrasana (pronounced: veer-ah-bah-DRAHS-anna)

The Warrior poses are some of the basic foundations of a good, solid asana practice. From squared hips to wide stances, to balance; from your core to your legs, these poses have it all.

These poses are approachable for most bodies and are less intimidating than some of the more ‘advanced’ postures while still being great postures for building strength, confidence, and body awareness.

Check it out, get on your mat, and feel like a warrior!

Level: Intermediate

Category: Standing

Breath: Deep Abdominal Breathing.

Keep the mouth closed with tongue resting on the roof of the mouth. Simply allow the breath to enter & release through the nostrils. Keep your awareness on the abdomen & notice how it starts to balloon & expand on the inhale. The exhale, the abdomen relaxes. Do not try & control the breath in anyway. Allow yourself to follow the journey of the breath so we connect the mind & body together into the present moment. Breath in to a count of 1-2-3 & breathe out to a count of 1-2-3.

Results: When you are fully in the present moment the mind no longer has power over you. This allows you to create a new reality for yourself rather than being conditioned by the old mind. Use your affirmation whilst holding the position.

The focus on the breath allows you to enter into the Alpha state which is a state where the brain waves are much slower than the usual waking state of Beta. Doing this consciously allows you to interrupt the neurological pathways within the brain that are causing negative blocks, emotions & behaviours.

Instructions:

  • Step 1: Begin in Tadasana (Mountain Pose.)
  • Step 2: Step your right foot towards the back of the mat creating a long stance.
  • Step 3: Turn your right heel down and angle your foot to a 45 degree angle.
  • Step 4: Bend your left knee as close as you can to a 90 degree angle.
  • Step 5: Extend your arms upwards as if you are Virabhadra holding his two swords.
  • Step 6: Attempting to angle both hips towards the front is ideal, but not necessary AND should be avoided if you experience pain in the hips, knees, and/or low back.
  • Step 7: Hold the pose for 5-10 breaths before returning to Tadasana and repeating on the second side.

Benefits

  • Strengthening the feet
  • Strengthening hamstrings, quadriceps and gluteus
  • Building core power
  • Opening the chest
  • Releasing tension

Beginner's Tip: Beginners find it very difficult to keep the back heel grounded and the lower back lengthened. As a short-term solution, raise the back heel on a sand bag, block or other height.

Avoid This Pose If:-

  • High blood pressure
  • Heart problems
  • Students with shoulder problems should keep their raised arms parallel (or slightly wider than parallel) to each other.
  • Students with neck problems should keep their head in a neutral position and not look up at the hands.

Tweet This: MedYoga Warrior Affirmation: “I am brave. I am powerful.”

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