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Fierce. Grounded. Energized. In our yoga practice, the warrior poses cultivate all of these qualities and more — and during times of stress and uncertainty (hello, 2020!), calling on these foundational asanas can be a wonderful way to harness your inner warrior spirit and regain balance.

Warrior 1, Warrior 2 and Warrior 3 each come with their own unique challenges, no matter how experienced the yogi. There’s a lot going on with multiple body parts in all three postures, but the benefits make regular practice and exploration well worth it. 

In the next few blog posts, we’ll share our best tips for helping you embrace your own beautiful, confident expression of the warrior asanas. As always, remember to breathe, honor wherever you’re at at the moment and enjoy the journey! Let’s start with Warrior 1…

The Basics of Warrior 1

At first glance, this pose might appear simple, but the truth is that it requires a ton of coordination, multitasking and mind-body coordination. It’s vital to build a strong foundation first: Starting from the ground up reduces distractions and focuses your energy, and the result is a strong, proud stance that invites you to step into your power. 

When it comes to your foundation, your feet are on two skis or parallel tracks here, rather than a tightrope. The front toes will face forward, with the knee bent and stacked above your ankle. Your back foot spins in about 45 degrees, and it likely wants to peel up so try to make an effort to really ground down through the outer edges. The back leg is super strong and engaged. 

Once your lower body is stable, you can begin to work up and lift through your heart. With your hips and chest facing forward, use your imagination to draw energy up from the arches of your feet, up through your legs and all the way to your fingertips as you reach to the sky (palms spin in to face each other). Essentially, Warrior 1 invites you to reach up through your arms as you ground your feet down. Gaze up at the fingertips, or feel free to keep your head in a neutral position facing forward.

Benefits:

  • Stretches the chest and side body
  • Strengthens the back and thighs
  • Increases circulation
  • Boosts concentration
  • Clears the mind
  • Energizes the entire body 
  • Encourages greater flexibility, strength and range of motion in the feet

As you explore Warrior 1, remember to be patient with yourself. With practice, you’ll create the strength, balance and awareness to move into your deepest expression of the posture. Namaste, and be well everyone!

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