Virabhadrasana, or Warrior Pose is a great pose to strengthen the arms, shoulders, thighs and back muscles. This pose is named after Veerabhadra, a fierce warrior, an incarnation of Lord Shiva.
Veera – vigorous, warrior, courageous; Bhadra – good, auspicious; Asana – posture
How to do Warrior Pose (Virabhadrasana)
Virabhadrasana is one of the most graceful yoga postures. While being graceful, it is also a strong pose.
- Stand straight with legs wide apart, about 3-4 feet.
- Turn your right foot in 90 degrees and left foot out pointing straight forward.
- Align your left heel to the middle arch of your right foot.
- Lift both arms sideways to shoulder height with palms facing down. Arms are parallel to the mat with shoulders relaxed away from ears.
- With an inhale, bend your right knee. Ensure that the right knee is directly above right foot and not overshooting the right ankle.
- Turn your head to look to the right, past your right fingers.
- Every inhale, feel your spine growing taller, every exhale, push your pelvis down. Hold your arms up strong, shoulder blades back and down.
- Weight is equally distributed to both legs.
- With an inhale, straighten right leg. With an exhale, lower your arms down from the sides.
- Repeat on the left side, bringing left foot in 90 degrees and right foot out.
Benefits of the Warrior Pose (Virabhadrasana)
- Strengthens the arms, shoulders, legs, lower back.
- Improves balance in the body and helps increase stamina.
- Releases frozen shoulders and the constant hunched-over-desk tired shoulders.
- Releases the stress held in shoulders and upper arms.
Contraindications of the Warrior Pose (Virabhadrasana)
- High blood pressure patients should avoid this posture.
- Spinal disorders and recent recovery of chronic illnesses, should consult with a doctor before practicing Warrior Pose.
- Warrior Pose is especially beneficial for pregnant ladies in their second and third trimesters, provided they have been practicing yoga regularly. Practice standing close to a wall for support, if required. Do consult a doctor before doing any yoga poses during pregnancy.
- Avoid this posture if you are suffering or had recently suffered from diarrhea.
- If you have knee pain or arthritis, use knee supports before practicing this posture.