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Asana of the Month: Virabhadrasana 1

Virabhadrasana 1 - Warrior 1 or Hero pose

Sanskrit: Vira - Hero, Bhadra - Friend or Blessed, Asana Pose

Virabhadrasana 1 is good preparation for backbends. This pose takes you out of your thoughts and lets you arrive in the now. It makes you strong as a warrior: Be a warrior, not a worrier.

  • Level: Beginner
  • Duration: 15 seconds to 1 minute per page
  • Repetition: one round per side
  • Stretches: shoulders, back, abdomen, groin
  • Strengthens: lungs, arms, chest, shoulders
  • Chakra: Mooladhara and Ajna Chakra (Root Chakra and Third Eye)

Benefits

Stretches shoulders, lungs, chest, abdomen, and neck

Improves breathing

Strengthens blood circulation

Improves concentration

Gives peace and inner balance

Improves balance and coordination

 

Contraindications

♦ Weak heart

♦ Sensitive/unstable knees

♦ Discomfort in the knee or hip

 

Instructions for Virabhadrasana 1

  1. Stand in Tadasana. Back is straight and the whole body in a straight line.
  2. Exhale and bring your left foot far back. Turn your foot 45 degrees outward. The heels of both feet are in line. Both pelvic bones and upper body point to the left side.
  3. Raise your arms at shoulder level and stretch your fingers.
  4. The right foot is pointing straight forward. Bend your knee and lower your body until your thigh is parallel to the floor. The knee is right over the ankle. Upper and lower leg form an angle of 90 degrees. If necessary, adjust the distance between the feet.
  5. Turn your upper body and pelvis forward, arms follow and are now on the sides. The outer edge of your left foot is on the ground.
  6. Now lift the arms and bring the palms together over your head. Stretch your arms and spine as far back as it is still comfortable for you. Look at your hands and find your balance.
  7. That is the final position. Hold it for 15 seconds in the beginning and slowly increase the duration up to a minute.
  8. To get out of the posture, raise the upper body, lower the arms to shoulder level, turn the pelvis and upper body to the left side, and bring the feet together step by step or with a jump. Relax for a few moments in Tadasana.
  9. Repeat with the right foot behind.

 

The science behind Virabhadrasana 1

This pose is named after the warrior Virabhadra, a servant of Shiva. Sometimes he is also called the son of Shiva, but Shiva could not father any children. According to Vayu Purana (scripture dedicated to Vayu, the God of the Wind), Shiva created Virabhadra out of his mouth. Virabhadrasana I not only deepens your breath but also brings flexibility to your shoulders, neck, and back. It produces heat and improves blood circulation in the legs. Mentally, the warrior improves your stamina and brings peace and stability to your mind. On the energetic level, this pose strengthens the Mooladhara Chakra and the Ajna Chakra. It gives grounding and strengthens the intuition and imagination.

 

Attention: Yoga beginners should first learn all yoga practices from a competent teacher and then practice alone.

Virbhadrasana2 - Asana of the Month: Virabhadrasana 1
Virbhadrasana3 - Asana of the Month: Virabhadrasana 1

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