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Warrior 3



Foot to Hip : Front leg neutral, knee extended, hip flexed, pelvis neutral. Back leg neutral, knee extended, hip neutrally extended. Ground foot, lift arches.
Spine : Supported spine front and back by core muscles. Keep spine long.
Shoulder to Hand : Shoulder flexion (arms raised in front) Elbow extension. Strong arms.


Virabhadra, is a mythical warrior, said to be the fierce form of Lord Shiva. Warrior III Pose is the third of the three Warrior Poses: Virabhadrasana I, is his arrival, with swords in both hands, thrusting his way up through the earth from below. Virabhadrasana II, he sights his opponent. (Daksha) Virabhadrasana III, moving swiftly and precisely, he decapitates Daksha with his sword.

This standing asymmetrical balance pose is a great starting balance.
Preparation could be an upper body half way lift with both feet on the floor to get an understanding of holding the spine long in this relationship to gravity. Or could be done kneeling kicking the leg back to get further understanding of holding the leg without over extending the spine by kicking too high or overusing glutes which externally rotates hip. In Warrior 3, the supporting leg is lengthened so warming up the hamstrings prior may be necessary for some, or the pose could be modified see below.


Foot to Hip : Play with angle of back foot.
Spine : Cat Cow. Tilt less/more.
Shoulder to Hand : Straight arm, aeroplane, cactus, interlaced behind.


- Don't tip so much easier position to maintain with gravity
- Soften the supporting knee to lesson the stretch in the hamstrings
- Arms by sides will lessen the pull down at the front
- Block under hand to support the upper body
- Use a wall or chair to help with balance


For a deeper stretch in the back of the supporting leg, tilt into Standing Split.
Bend back leg and reach back for foot with both hands, keeping body parallel, kick foot back. Opens the chest and arm lines. Works the thigh further pressing back into hand. May find an extra stretch in the front of the raised leg.
Squat deeply into supporting leg.
Move about to challenge balance further. ie knee to elbow, or w3 to standing knee raise and back repeatedly.

Warrior 3
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