The Health Benefits of Virabhadrasana I (Warrior I Pose)

There are generally three variations on Warrior Pose; this is the first. CNY Healing Arts encourages you to incorporate this dynamite asana into your daily yoga routine. Even better, check out our yoga class schedules by location (Syracuse, Rochester to practice Virabhadrasana I with a licensed yoga practitioner.

Getting Into Warrior I Pose:

Begin in High Lunge with your right leg forward. If you are in correct stance, your right knee should be directly over your right ankle. Your right toes should point straight ahead and your left toes should be pointed 45-60 degrees away from your body.

Make sure your right heel is in line with your left heel, then engage your legs by pressing through your feet. Bring your hands to your hips, squaring your hips and shoulders straight ahead. Then, relax your shoulders down your back and gently draw them together.

Inhale and lift your arms straight up over your head, palms facing each other. If possible, bring your palms together. Now, reach up strongly through your arms. Avoid puffing out your sides; rather lift through your sternum so you can feel a nice stretch in your entire torso and spine. Keep your shoulders relaxed and chest lifted.

To deepen the stretch, keep your palms together and gently arch your back, gazing up towards the ceiling. Remember, your body is a temple capable of miraculous things. Feel strength and stability in your stance. Breathe deep and steady for several breaths.

To release, come back into high lunge, straighten the right leg, pivot your body 90 degress to the left, and point your toes in the same direction. Extend your arms out to your sides and you will be in Utthita Hasta Padasana (Extended Hands and Feet Pose). Take a few breaths of relaxation and repeat the exercise with your left foot forward.

Benefits of Warrior I Pose:

  • Strengthens your shoulders, arms, legs, ankles and back
  • Opens yours hips, chest and lungs
  • Improves focus, balance and stability
  • Encourages good circulation and respiration
  • Stretches your arms, legs, shoulders, neck, belly, groins and ankles
  • Energizes the entire body