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How to Do Warrior 3

Strike a Yoga Pose: Warrior 3

If you're looking for a yoga pose that makes you feel strong and centered, then it's time for you to spend a little quality time with Warrior 3. It's one of those poses that looks easy enough, but when you're in it, you'll feel it working every muscle in your body. It's named after Virabhadra, a warrior said to have a thousand heads, a thousand eyes, and a thousand feet; wielding a thousand clubs; and wearing a tiger's skin. It's meant to make you feel both powerful and at peace.

Sanskrit Name: Virabhadrasana 3
English Translation: Warrior 3
Also Called: Balancing Superman

To see some variations of this pose read more.

  • I like to come into this pose from Warrior 1 but you can also come into it from Mountain pose. From Warrior 1 (with your right knee forward), lower your torso and lift your left leg, bringing your body parallel with the ground. Extend your hands out in front of you, pressing your palms together firmly.

  • If it bothers your shoulders to press your hands together, separate your arms so they're shoulder-width apart. If extending your arms creates pain or pressure in your lower back, then bring your hands to your hips.
  • While in this pose, look down at the ground below you, and reach the crown of your head away from your left toes to create length in your spine. Engage your abdomen and draw your navel up to protect your lower back. If you feel pain in your knee, go ahead and bend it slightly. Your entire body should be engaged but not tense, so be sure you're relaxing your glutes, and drawing your shoulders away from your ears. Check to make sure your right toes aren't clenched.
  • Hold this position for five deep breaths, then lower your left leg returning to Warrior 1.
  • Now take a vinyasa and come into Warrior 1 with your left knee forward. When you're ready, do Warrior 3 on this side.
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Join The Conversation
ElectroPopTart ElectroPopTart 7 years
Gah!! I can do this...in theory, during my practice, but I just don't have the back strength/hamstring flexibility. I can do this better when I do it out of the blue, believe it or not.
Fitness Fitness 7 years
evalicious - you hold this pose for five breaths, and do it once on each side. You can always try holding it longer though to strengthen your body even more.
Evalicious Evalicious 7 years
How long are you supposed to hold that pose? And how many times are you supposed to do it?
MSL83 MSL83 7 years
Oh! That's what its supposed to look like. Since I'm a newbie,I wasn't sure how it looked since I was in the back row of class today.
sosupersam sosupersam 7 years
dang, my warrior 3's don't look that good yet!
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