Warrior 1 pose

Virabhadrasana 1

Categories:
Strength, Twist, Hip opener

The warrior 1 pose builds strength and stability in the legs, ankles, abdomen, lower back, shoulders and arms.

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Step by step explanation

The warrior 1 pose can be done by:

  1. Start by standing tall with your arms relaxed to the sides.
  2. Now, take a big step back to the right and place your right foot pointing forwards and your left foot pointing out to the left side. Try to align both heels with each other.
  3. Twist your upper body towards your right leg, while simultaneously bending your right knee, so that your right thigh is parallel to the ground. Move your right calf muscle forward and your right knee a little out to the right side.
  4. On your next inhale, raise your arms up towards the ceiling, draw your belly in and up, twisting your heart towards your right knee and lifting your chest upwards. Keep your body and your breathing stable.
  5. Make sure the arms are straight and reach your fingertips up towards the ceiling. You can keep your arms shoulder-width apart or if you have space bring the palms together. Bring your gaze up towards your hands.
  6. Stay here for at least five long deep breaths.
  7. To release, bring the arms back down alongside your body and head back to a neutral position. Bring the weight forward to your right leg and step back to standing with the legs together. Repeat, with the left leg in front.
  8. Take a big step back to the left and place your left foot pointing forwards and your right foot pointing out to the right side. Try to align both heels with each other.
  9. Twist your upper body towards your left leg, while simultaneously bending your left knee, so that your left thigh is parallel to the ground. Move your left calf muscle forward and your left knee a little out to the left side.
  10. On your next inhale, raise your arms up towards the ceiling, draw your belly in and up, twisting your heart towards your left knee and lifting your chest upwards. Keep your body and your breathing stable.
  11. Make sure the arms are straight and reach your fingertips up towards the ceiling. Again, you can keep your arms shoulder-width apart or if you have space bring the palms together. Bring your gaze up towards your hands.
  12. Stay here for at least five long deep breaths.
  13. To release, bring the arms back down alongside your body and head back to a neutral position. Bring the weight forward to your left leg and step back to standing with the legs together.

Cautions

Read the following cautions to stay safe

  • Adjust the position when experiencing neck injury or pain. Keep the neck aligned with the spine of the back, so you are looking to your front instead of looking up.
  • If you are concerned about anything of this pose, please contact your physician on whether this practice is good for you.

Making the pose easier

  • If you find it difficult to keep the heel on the floor, you could keep your back heel lifted or find a steady object to rest your back heel on.

Suggested preparation poses

Suggested follow-up poses