Pose of the Week: Humble Warrior

Humble Warrior.jpg

Humble Warrior

BADDHA VIRABHADRASANA

“There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.”

~Ernest Hemmingway

The humble warrior teaches us to bow down to our efforts and our strength with grace and wisdom. The warrior with in us all teaches us all when to fight for what we believe in, when to stand for peace, and how to find the balance between the two.

Benefits of the Pose:

  • Stretches lungs, chest, & shoulders
  • Opens heart
  • Releases tension in the spine & neck
  • Strengthens & stretches arms, thighs, & calves

Asana Breakdown:

Start off in Warrior II. Take your hands behind your back and interlace your fingers. Open up your chest by drawing your shoulder blades together and your hands down towards the earth. Square up your chest to the front of the room and begin to bow forward. Allow your shoulder to rest or line up with your front knee as your hands continue to reach towards the sky. Breathe here. Relax the neck and create a micro bend in your arms.

 

Pose of the Week: Peaceful Warrior

Peaceful Warrior.jpg

Peaceful Warrior

SHANTI VIRABHADRASANA

“There is no path to happiness. Happiness is the path. There is no path to love. Love is the path. There is no path to peace. Peace is the path.”

~Dan Millman

After the incredible amount of violence this week, it only seems fitting that the pose of the week would be peaceful warrior. I love that traditional yoga often centers around the warrior postures. It reminds us, we do not need vengeance to be strong. We do not need to inflict pain upon another to be triumphant. It reminds us that we do not count our victories as the number of wars have defeated on the battle field, but rather the amount of wars we have overcome within ourselves.

My heart goes out to those suffering right now at the hand of another. I feel so removed from that reality, I can only say this: The war stops externally, when the war stops internally. Peace is a choice. And it is possible. Do not lose faith. Do not lose your smile to grief. Draw inward and we will be triumphant. ❤

om shanti om shanti om shanti om.

Benefits of the Pose:

  • Strengthens the Legs
  • Stretches abdominal muscles and engages core
  • Stretches and supports the lungs
  • Opens Chest & Shoulder
  • Opens Heart

Asana Break Down:

Come into Warrior II (Virabhadrasana II), check your alignment with the front ankle. Make sure it is in alignment with the arch of the back foot. The back foot should be flat at a 45 degree angle. Bend deeply into the front knee. Make sure your front knee does not go past the front ankle. Draw the thighs together, squaring the hips, as if they were being pressed between two panes of glass. Arms should come out directly from the shoulder blades. Turn the hands towards the sky and bend backwards. Back and highly presses into the back leg. Most of the strength is being drawn from the core; the weight is not on the back knee. Open the chest and the heart lifts and spreads. Front arm comes over head, gaze comes towards the sky or the thumb.

 

Above, I have a chant you can say out loud or silently to yourself, either in this posture or sitting quietly. Om shanti translates into “om” the divine universe and “shanti” translates to peace, as a phrase it means may the divine creator, energy, and wisdom grant eternal peace to all things.