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Warrior II Pose
Warrior II Pose

Introduction

Sanskrit Name

Virabhadrasana II

Chakra Activated

Warrior 2 opens multiple chakras in the body.

  • Sacral Chakra (Svadistahana)
  • Solar Plexus Chakra (Manipura)
  • Heart Chakra (Anahata)

Benefits

  • Powerful stretch for the inner thighs, groin and chest
  • Deep hip opener
  • Strengthens thighs, buttocks, abdomen, ankles, and arches of the feet
  • Increases stamina and breathing capacity
  • Increases ability to concentrate as you focus your energy on the pose

Therapeutic Benefits

  • Relieves backaches, especially through second trimesteer of pregnancy
  • Stimulates healthy digestion
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Flat feet
  • Sciatica
  • Infertility
  • Osteoporosis

Contraindications

Do not practice Warrior 2 if you are experiencing

  • Diarrhoea
  • High blood pressure
  • A hip, knee, or shoulder injury
  • Neck injuries – modify the pose by looking straight ahead instead of turning to look at your front hand

Step by Step Instructions

Step 1:

Start in Mountain pose (Tadasana) at the top of your mat. Bring your hands to your hips, then take a step back with your left leg, turning the body and pointing your left toes to face the long edge of the mat.

Step 2:

Look down at your feet and align the left heel with the right heel. Firm your thighs and press ground down through the four corners of your feet .

Step 3:

Inhale and extend your arms parallel to the mat, palms facing down. Keep your shoulders relaxed and neck lengthened.

Step 4:

Exhale and bend the right knee, keeping the right thigh parallel to the mat and knee just over ankle. If you feel unstable in this position, adjust your stance or lift your right thigh higher until you feel grounded.

Step 5:

Draw your lower belly in and up to lengthen your spine, making sure not to lean your torso to the left or right. keep both sides of the body equally long, with the shoulders directly over the pelvis. lengthen the tailbone down to the ground, and look over your right hand.

Stay in the pose for 5-15 breaths, drawing strength from your legs and belly.

To exit the pose, press onto both feet, inhale and straighten your legs.

Repeat the same pose on the other side.

Watch a video demonstration of Warrior 2 Pose

Modifications & Beginners Tips

While Warrior 2 may seem relatively simple, there are a few alignment mistakes that beginners commonly make. Here are some tips to avoid them.

  • Prevent the front knee from collapsing inwards by engaging your outer hip muscles and externally rotating the leg
  • Try not to let your ribs stick out, instead, engage your core and try to draw down your tailbone to the floor. Lengthen your spine.

In case you find the full expression of the pose challenging, try making some modifications to your pose:

  • If your hips are tight, try to shorten your stance and straighten your front leg slightly.
  • If you have a shoulder injury, you can place your hands on your hips
  • You may also use a chair to support your front leg

Variations

One of my favourite variation of Warrior 2 is Reverse Warrior.

  • Turn your palms to face the sky
  • Inhale and reach your front hand towards the sky, and bring your other hand to the back leg
  • Try to lengthen the spine instead of collapsing into the back arm
  • Hold it for 5-10 breaths before releasing

See also:

Warrior 1 Step by Step

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Warrior 2 Yoga Pose
Warrior 2 Yoga Pose