Virabhadrasana III (Warrior III)

Becoming the warrior step by step:

From Warrior I to Warrior III

  • Step your feet out to a wide stance. Turn your left foot slightly in and right foot completely out, with its outer edge parallel to the edge of the mat.
  • Become aware of the hips and focus on squaring them – drawing your right hip back and your left hip forward.
  • Focus on grounding strongly through your outer left foot while keeping the inner arch lifted.
  • Assess the angle of your upper body, making sure it is totally perpendicular to floor, and not leaning towards the front.
  • Keeping the body in this position, slowly bend the right leg, If your groins are tight, you might not be able to bend deep. You then need to be patient. Otherwise bend the knee until it is right over the heel.
  • Sweep the arms overhead and let the palms completely touch each other.
  • This is Warrior I. Stay here for a few breaths, gazing towards the finger tips without over compressing the neck.
  • Now slowly lean forward, and take the upper body as parallel as possible to the floor.
  • Shift your weight forward by radiating energy to the front through the torso and arms, so that body weight falls almost completely on your right foot:
  • Then, with the left leg feeling light, radiate energy backward and upward through it, which will lift it upward, while simultaneously straightening the right leg as well.
  • Keep the left foot dorsiflexed, so that the left toes and knee point as downward as possible. This will ensure that the left hip doesn’t go higher than the right. You may keep your arms shoulder width.
  • Keep the right front thigh muscles firmly drawing up and right hip strongly pressing back.
  • Extend evenly to the front, to the back and to the earth. Eventually your arms, shoulders, rib cage, hips and left leg all will be in one level.
  • Through regular practice, once this starts to happen effortlessly, your awareness will drop into a silence which is filled with energy as well as a subtle joy.
  • Once you come down, repeat on the other side.

May you balance all the challenges that you may come across in 2009, likewise!