ANATOMY OF YOGA: WARRIOR I POSE
Warrior I Pose, a.k.a Virabhadra’s Pose, is perfect for stretching out almost the whole body. It will stretch your chest, shoulders, neck, belly, and groins, thighs, calves and ankles, all while strengthening the arms, back, and legs. It also improves circulation, so you might experience an energizing effect while practicing this pose.
Here’s how to do it:
Start in Mountain Pose, so both hips are facing forward. Step the right leg back, so you have a wide stance. Feet should be heel to heel alignment, but if that feels like you're on a tight rope, step the back leg a little wider. Rotate the back leg from the hip socket so the foot is at a 45 degree angle, while the front leg (ankle, knee and foot) track forward. Lengthen the tailbone towards the floor and keep lower belly engaged, hug the outer hip muscles in towards the midline to keep your pelvis supported. The weight is even between both feet - the back leg is fully engaged - with the back foot pressing firmly into the mat, while the front leg bends towards a 90 degree angle. The legs are the root and foundation to this pose, once you find the stability through your legs you reach the arms overhead. With the arms overhead you are aiming to find length through the torso, activating the arms fully as you reach them towards the ceiling. Keep the head in a neutral position- picking a point in front of you to focus on helps do this. Relax the muscles around base of the neck and your facial muscles, and breathe. Hold for at least 5 deep breaths. When you’re finished, return to Mountain Pose, and do the same thing on the other side.
Need some added instruction? We have this short tutorial video, featuring L.A. based yoga teacher Danielle:
*Please note these instructions are very basic guides. If you are new to yoga, please find a local studio near you and take a couple of classes before attempting to practice alone. We cannot be held responsible for an injury caused by following these instructions.