43/100 ~ Warrior 2 (Virabhadrasana 2) – Doesn’t this posture embody personal power and determination? This is one of my favorite standing poses, and one where misalignment is common. Take time to create this pose from the floor up with proper foot placement to reap full mind and body benefits.

Benefits: This posture helps to reduce stress and decrease cortisol levels; strengthens, tones and stretches hips, legs, feet, shoulders and arms; encourages focus, stamina, resilience and determination; fosters a sense of personal pride and power; teaches us to be assertive without aggression.

How to: Step your feet wide on your mat. Point your right toes toward the top of the mat, and angle the left toes toward the top left corner. (Your left toes should not be pointing toward the back of your mat.) Imagine the feet on a tight rope, with the right heel in line with the left arch. Press evenly into both feet and square your shoulders to the left side of the mat. Extend your arms out to the sides, reaching through the fingertips and relaxing the shoulders away from the ears. Take a deep inhale. On your exhale, bend into the right knee so that the knee stops right above your ankle joint. If your knee goes in front of the ankle, try widening your stance (step the left foot back a bit more) and try again. Turn your head to the right and gaze over the right fingertips. Relax the shoulders, press into the feet, and breathe!!!  3-5 breath cycles before lifting and moving to the other side.

Mantra: “I am capable of rebounding from any setback.”

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