Warrior 2 is a classic yoga pose that opens up and stabilises the hips, strengthens the core and stretches the ankles, calves, hamstrings and groin. It’s a great one for practicing balancing steadiness and ease, in Sanskrit—sthira and sukha. Observing this principle shows us how to gauge an appropriate level of effort. This takes skilful use of the breath and attention to proper alignment.
WARRIOR 2 BENEFITS
- Strengthens the feet, ankles, knees, quads, hips, core and shoulders.
- Stretches the calves, hamstrings and groin.
- Opens up the hips.
Begin in Mountain pose.
Step your left foot towards the back of the mat and turn it in slightly less than 90 degrees. Line up your front heel with the arch of your back foot and bend your front knee to 90 degrees. Bring your arms up to shoulder height and face forwards.
Reach through your fingertips and drop your hips. Try to bring your front thigh parallel with the mat. Check that your right knee is directly over your right ankle and tracking over your second toe. Press back through your left foot to keep your back leg engaged. Finally, make sure that your upper body is not leaning forward or back—stacking your ribcage on top of your pelvis.
Hold the pose for 3-5 breaths on each side.
- Avoid Warrior 2 if you have a foot, hip, lower back or shoulder injury.