Warrior 1 (W1), or Virabhadrasana (Veer-uh-buh-drahs-uh-nuh) is a common pose that is considered one of the fundamental yoga postures. We will be studying the basics of Warrior 1 in celebration of February, the month of love. This posture is a heart opener, allowing the yogi to be physically and spiritually open to love.
Don’t be fooled by the beauty of this pose. Warrior 1 requires a strong stance and brings in the energy through inhalation and opening the chest.
As you practice this posture, think of yourself as a spiritual warrior on a journey ready to take on the difficulties in your path with an open heart.
How to move into Warrior 1:
Start in mountain pose, feet hip width apart, weight equally divided on both feet Keep a micro bend in the knees, belly button to the spine, shoulders back and down, chin slightly tucked. Imagine the crown of your head is being pulled to the ceiling.
Take a step forward with your right foot as you exhale. You should be able to bring that foot back without losing your balance or making any adjustment so approximately 3-4 feet in front.
Turn the left foot to right (inward) 45-60 degrees. Try to keep your feet in line but you can adjust it as needed for your balance.
Now turn the upper body to face the front of the mat as much as you comfortably can. Make sure you have your weight on the outer edge of your left foot so that your left knee does not drop inward.
Inhale bring your arms over your head, keeping them parallel to each other. Bring your shoulder blades down and back as you open the chest. There should be a slight arch at your upper back. At the same time bend the front knee (right). It should not go beyond your toes.
Benefits of Warrior One:
Improves flexibility of shoulders, neck, upper and lower back, and the hip joints.
Improves the strength in lower extremity muscles, neck and back extensors.
Balances the time spent bent over on our desks, phones and steering wheels.
While doing the pose, please follow Yoga's law: First no harm; if there is any discomfort or pain please do not attempt this pose.
Enjoy the journey with an open heart!
Open your heart this month. Contact me for a few one-on-one sessions and you will be ready in no time!