Improve balance, flexibility and strength with Warrior III

Warrior III or Virabhadrasana III is a final pose of three-pose Virabhadrasana series. This yoga move will test your balance, tones your legs, strengths core muscles and improves flexibility! Moreover, you do not need any equipment at all. For this position, you balance on one leg while bending forward at the torso and raising your opposite leg to form a T with your body. With the amount of strength, it requires to hold your balance, Warrior III develops and tones the muscles of your core, while also strengthening your legs, shoulders, and back.

Technique

  • Stay tall
  • Hands come to the waist line
  • Step the right foot a foot lengths forward and shift all of your weight onto this leg.
  • Lift your left foot back as you lean your torso forward. As your leg lifts higher, your torso moves the equal distance forward.
  • Look down at the floor
  • Reach your fingertips forward, palms facing each other
  • Breathe and hold for 2-6 breaths.
  • To release: slowly bring your back foot down and release the arms
  • Repeat on the other side.

Benefits

After doing Warrior III exercise your body gets the following benefits:

  • Strengthens your legs,buttocks, shoulder and arm muscles
  • Stretches your hamstrings and hip flexors
  • Extends lunges, chest, and shoulders
  • Improves strength in torso, abdomen, spine and pelvic.
  • Improves your balance, coordination, and flexibility
  • Encourages better body posture
  • Quiet your mind, calms nervous system

Common mistakes

When performing the Warrior III pose, you should stay focused on all small details, to get the most benefits from the exercise.

  • Extended leg hip is too low or too high. Your hips supposed to be in one line
  • Do not lift your raised leg higher than your hips and your head. Your arms, spine, and raised leg have to stay in one straight line
  • Do not lock or hyperextend the knee of your standing leg, keep it soft
  • Keep your neck relaxed.
  • Ensure that your torso doesn’t lunge forward too much as you transition into the pose
  • Pull the shoulder blades back and down the spine, so the shoulders do not crowd the ears
  • Raised leg should be straight behind you and stay parallel to the floor

Tips

These small tips may remind you how to perform Warrior III in the most efficient way

  • Relax the toes of your standing food
  • Face the wall, so your fingers can just reach it for an extra support (if needed)
  • If extending the arms out in front of you feels too challenging or causes discomfort in the low back, take your arms by your sides instead
  • Focus on the stretch, not on the lift!
  • Engage your abdominal muscles in toward your spine. This will help to protect your lower back.

Practising Warrior III will build balance and strength. It might take some time to be able to balance for more than a breath or two! Remember to move at your own pace. Don’t be afraid to fall out of the pose. Take it slowly — stability will come with practice.

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