An Easy Guide to Warrior Pose 1, or Virabhadrasana 1

Warrior Pose 1, or Virabhadrasana 1, is a great yoga pose to help yogis battle against daily distractions, to achieve inner peace.

Warrior 1

Warrior Pose 1 is a backbend that expands the chest and opens the heart, strengthening the legs and spine, so that the modern-day warrior may face all challenges - be they commuting, naughty children or office politics - with equanimity.

Watch a clip for this yoga pose 

How to do Warrior Pose 1, or Virabhadrasana 1, in easy steps

Step 1:

Begin in Mountain Pose (Tadasana). Inhale and on an exhale jump the legs about 4 feet apart.

Step 2:

Sweep your arms to the side and stretching, join the palms together overhead.

Step 3:

Turn your feet to the right, the left foot 45 degrees, the right foot 90 degrees.

Step 4:

Exhale and square the pubis, naval and sternum to the front of your mat. Square both feet into the mat, pressing evenly to both sides.

Step 5:

Reach strongly through your arms, lifting the ribcage away from the pelvis. 

Step 6:

With an exhalation, bend your right knee so that the shin creates a right angle with the floor. The knee of the front leg is in line with the middle toe, don't let the knee drop outward or inward.

Step 7:

Maintain the turn of the trunk and lift up, looking up towards your hands if this doesn’t strain your neck.

Step 8:

Stay for 5 or 10 breaths, no longer.

Step 9:

Inhale, straighten the right knee and come up and back to Mountain Pose.

Step 10:

Repeat on the other side.

Warrior 1

Yoga pose category:  Standing

Level: 1

Although this is a yoga pose for beginners, most yogis will struggle with keeping the heel of the back foot pressed firmly against the floor. If you’re finding it difficult to keep your back foot fully grounded, try using a yoga block or other yoga tool or slightly lift the foot until you feel comfortable practicing the pose without it.

Sanskrit words meaning: 

Virabhadra - warrior, created by Lord Shiva

Asana - pose

Yoga pose health benefits: 

Like all yoga poses, Warrior Pose 1 has many health benefits. Use it to help with the following health conditions:


Flabby tummy and hips

Respiratory issues

Yoga pose contraindications: 

Don’t practice Warrior Pose 1 if you have any of the following health conditions:

High blood pressure

Heart issues

Neck injury

Knee injury

Back injury

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Lucy Edge 

is a yoga advocate and writer with three yoga books to her name, including the beloved travel memoir Yoga School Dropout. She writes regularly for the national press, has authored over 150 guides to types of yoga and yoga poses, discovered nearly 250 proven health benefits of yoga through her painstaking classification of 300 clinical studies, and collected more than 500 personal testimonials to the real life benefits of yoga. She is also the creator of our yoga shop – YogaClicks.Store – handpicking yoga brands that are beautifully made by yogis committed to environmental and social sustainability.