Embrace The Fierce Warrior
Warrior- II, one of the three warrior poses performed in yoga. Warrior — II often comes earlier in the sequence. This pose is named for a fierce warrior, an incarnation of Shiva, Virabhadrasana II. Its named rightfully so. Warrior II is a pose that is as supportive and grounding as it lengthens and strengthens different body parts. When I am practicing this pose, I feel like a fierce goddess, strong yet grounded. I like to incorporate this pose in most of my yoga practices. This pose increases stamina and is great for stretching the back and legs. This pose distributes the weight between both legs with the front knee bent, hips squared and pointing forward, and arms extended into a T shape over your legs.
This pose extends the hamstring muscles, semitendinosus and biceps femorus, hip adductors, and hip abductors. It strengthens the thighs and arms, activating rectus femoris muscles and arm muscles. It also activates deep glute muscles, namely the gluteus Medius muscle.
Benefits of Warrior-II –
• Stretches your hips, groin and chest
• Strengthens thighs and arms
• Opens the hips and shoulders.
• Stimulates your abdominal organs
• Improves circulation
• Increases stamina
How to Get into Warrior II –
Face the front of your mat, arms stretched into a T. Legs parallel to each other in a wide stance with right foot facing forward and left foot parallel to the mat.
• Bend your right knee and stack it above your ankle.
• Keep the crown of your head stacked over your pelvis.
• Align your shoulders over your hips.
• Press the tips of your hands in equal and opposite direction
• Turn and look past your right fingertips.
• Hold for 5–10 breaths.
• Repeat on the other side.
- If you struggle to stay in this pose, stand next to a wall. Place a block between your shin and the wall for stability.
- If holding the pose is very challenging, try to practice a flow. Move in and out of Warrior -II. Straighten the front leg and raise your arms above your head, as you inhale. Bend the front leg again and lower your arms parallel to the floor, as you exhale.
- To prevent the front knee from collapsing inwards, align the inside of your knee with the last two toes of your foot. There is a slight external rotation of you front hip.
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About the Author
Aesha Tahir is a health and wellness coach and a certified personal trainer. She holds a Master’s degree in Applied Exercise Science and is certified by the NASM as a Personal trainer. She is a certified USA Track and Field Running Coach and Road Runners of America Coach. She is a 200-HR Registered Yoga Teacher. She is also a group exercise instructor specializing in barre, spinning, strength training, boot camp, and yoga classes. She has over five years of experience in the fitness and wellness arena with focused expertise in coaching, corrective exercise and injury prevention, individualized fitness programs, and group fitness programs. She is also an aspiring public speaker in the fitness and wellness world who believes in this quote; “To be inspired is great, but to inspire is incredible.”