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How to Do the Warrior III Pose

The Warrior III Pose recreates the moment that the fierce Virabhadra chopped off the head of his master's enemy. If you could do battle balanced on one leg, maybe you'd have a pose named after you.

Instructions

  • Step 1: Mountain Pose Stand at the front of your mat with your feet hip-width apart and your weight evenly distributed between them, your spine erect, and your arms at your sides.
  • Step 2: Step w/ right foot Step your right foot about one foot in front of your left, and shift your weight onto the right leg.
  • Step 3: Extend arms up Extend your arms straight up overhead and press your palms together.
  • Step 4: Lift left leg Raise your left leg up behind you, keeping the leg straight as your torso and arms lower in front of you as if your hips are a hinge.
  • TIP: If balancing on one foot is difficult, use a wall to stabilize yourself, either placing your hands or your left foot on it before assuming the pose.
  • Step 5: Align & square hips When your left leg, back, and arms are parallel to the ground, forming a T with your right leg, square your hips to the ground.
  • TIP: To vary the pose, separate your hands, put them on your hips, clasp them behind your back, or reach your arms toward the back foot.
  • Step 6: Hold pose Hold the pose for a few slow breaths.
  • Step 7: Release pose Release the pose by lowering your leg and simultaneously raising your torso.
  • Step 8: Repeat pose Repeat the pose on your left leg, holding it for as many breaths as you did on the right.
  • Step 9: Release pose Release the pose by lowering your leg and raising your torso. You’ll have a namesake in no time.
  • FACT: Virabhadra’s vanquished enemy was given a replacement head: that of a goat.

You Will Need

  • Comfortable clothing suitable for stretching and moving
  • A calm place where you won't be distracted or disturbed
  • A yoga mat or folded blanket
  • A wall

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