How To Do Reverse Warrior Pose (Viparita Virabhadrasana)

Reverse Warrior, known as Viparita Virabhadrasanain Sanskrit, is a is a widely used standing yoga pose in the yoga practice. The word “Viparita” means “reverse,” which is indicative of the pose’s form. The name comes from the Hindu warrior, Virabhadra, and is a testament to the strength and resilience this pose cultivates.

The posture is a testament to the power and resilience of the human body. It is a pose that challenges and strengthens, offering numerous benefits for those who practice it regularly.


Step-by-step Instructions

Here are the step-by-step instructions to perform Viparita Virabhadrasana:

  • Begin in Warrior II pose (Virabhadrasana II), with your right foot forward and your left foot back.
  • Keep your front knee bent and your back leg straight, with your feet firmly rooted into the mat.
  • On your inhale, lift your left arm up towards the ceiling and reach it back behind you.
  • On your exhale, gently lean your torso back towards your right leg, extending your right arm down towards your right knee.
  • Keep your gaze towards the ceiling or down towards the floor, depending on what feels comfortable for your neck.
  • Keep your front knee bent and avoid letting it collapse inwards.
  • Hold the pose for 5-10 breaths, focusing on lengthening your spine and opening your chest.
  • To come out of the pose, inhale to lift your torso back up to center and release your arms.
  • Repeat the pose on the opposite side, starting with your left foot forward.

6 Viparita Virabhadrasana Benefits

Here are some of the benefits of practicing this pose:

  1. Strengthens the legs: The pose requires you to bend your front knee, which helps to strengthen the muscles in your legs, including the quadriceps, hamstrings, and calves.
  2. Stretches the side body: As you reach your arm overhead and lean back, you’ll feel a deep stretch along the side of your body, from your hip to your armpit. This can help to improve flexibility and relieve tension in these areas.
  3. Improves balance and stability: Like many standing yoga poses, the pose requires balance and stability. This can help to improve your overall balance and coordination, which can be beneficial in many aspects of life.
  4. Opens the chest and shoulders: The pose also involves a gentle backbend, which can help to open up the chest and shoulders. This can be particularly beneficial if you spend a lot of time sitting or hunched over a computer, as it can help to counteract the effects of poor posture.
  5. Stimulates the abdominal organs: The twisting motion involved in the pose can help to stimulate the abdominal organs, which can aid in digestion and detoxification.
  6. Relieves stress and calms the mind: Like many yoga poses, the posture can also help to calm the mind and relieve stress. The focus required to maintain the pose can help to distract from worries and anxieties, promoting a sense of peace and relaxation.

Remember, it’s always important to practice yoga under the guidance of a qualified instructor. Especially if you’re new to the practice or have any health concerns.

Reverse Warrior Pose Beginner Tips

If you’re just starting out, remember to keep your front knee bent and your back leg straight. To create a strong and stable foundation, like a sturdy tree rooted deeply into the earth.

It’s a standing pose that provides a deep stretch for the entire body while also building strength. To get into this pose, start in Warrior II. Stepping your feet wide apart and extending your arms parallel to the floor.

Then, gently bend your front knee while keeping your back leg straight. Reach your front arm up towards the ceiling as you lean back slightly. Feeling a nice stretch along the side of your body.

Not only does the posture strengthen and stretch the muscles of the legs, hips, and core, but it also improves balance and posture. This standing yoga pose can help relieve tension in the shoulders and neck. While opening up space in the chest and lungs for better breath control.

The asana has many benefits for both the physical body and mental well-being. As you flow through this pose with grace and ease, allow yourself to connect with nature’s energy flowing through you.

Now let’s transition into the next section about contraindications.


To ensure a safe practice, it’s important for you to be mindful of any existing injuries or conditions that may limit your ability to perform the pose.

This powerful yoga pose improves flexibility in the spine and increases blood circulation throughout the body. However, there are certain contraindications that you should be aware of before attempting this pose:

  • If you have low back pain or injury, it’s best to avoid deep backbends.
  • If you have high blood pressure or heart problems. Consult with your doctor before practicing this pose as it involves a deep stretch and can increase blood circulation.
  • Avoid this pose if you have any knee issues or injuries. As it requires the knee to be directly over the ankle.
  • If you have shoulder or neck injuries. Take caution when extending your arm overhead and gaze forward in the pose.

Remember to listen to your body and modify the pose accordingly if needed.

Now let’s move on to modifications and variations that can enhance your experience with this empowering yoga pose.

 Yoga Poses Modifications and Variations

Enhance your experience with this empowering yoga pose by exploring different modifications and variations that can deepen your stretch and challenge your balance. Reverse Warrior is an excellent way to open up the hips, stretch the side body, and improve flexibility in the legs.

To modify the pose, you can start with a shorter stance by bringing your feet closer together. This will make it easier to maintain balance and stability while still getting the benefits of the pose. Additionally, if you have limited flexibility in the back of your left thigh, you can bend your front knee slightly or place a block under your hand for support.

To further deepen the stretch, try extending your arms to the side instead of keeping them overhead. This variation engages more muscles in the upper body and challenges your balance even more. Make sure that when you extend your arms to the side. They are aligned directly with each other and perpendicular to the floor.

Keep your fingertips reaching towards the ceiling so that there is a gentle stretch throughout both arms. Your left arm should be extended next to your right thigh while maintaining a strong engagement of both legs.

Transitioning into breathing and mindfulness allows for a holistic approach to this powerful pose without explicitly mentioning steps.

Breathing and Mindfulness in Reverse Warrior

Immerse yourself in the present moment, allowing your breath to guide you and your mind to find stillness as you gracefully flow through the asana.

In this pose, you begin by standing with your feet hip distance apart, grounding yourself firmly into the earth. As you turn to the left, keep your hips low and bend your front knee, ensuring that it stays directly above your ankle.

This position creates a slight backbend in your spine, opening up the chest and allowing for increased blood circulation within the body.

As you settle into the posture, lift your right arm overhead and extend it towards the back of the room. This movement not only stretches out the side body but also engages and strengthens the muscles in your arms and shoulders.

Keep pressing down through both feet to maintain stability while reaching up with energy through your fingertips. With each inhale, feel a lengthening sensation throughout your entire body, from crown to heel. And as you exhale, allow any tension or stress to melt away.

By incorporating breathing techniques and mindfulness into the asana, we can deepen our connection between mind and body. The controlled breath helps us stay focused on the present moment while providing a sense of calmness and clarity.

As we hold this posture and breathe deeply, we increase blood circulation throughout our entire system, invigorating ourselves from within. This powerful combination of breath awareness and physical movement promotes a sense of freedom within ourselves.

Transitioning seamlessly into incorporating it into your yoga routine. This allows for a continuous flow of movements that build strength, flexibility, and balance throughout the practice.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Reverse Warrior suitable for people with knee injuries?

It can be challenging for people with knee injuries. It involves a deep lunge and a strong twist, which may put strain on the knees. It’s best to consult with a doctor or experienced yoga teacher to determine if it’s suitable for you.

Can Reverse Warrior help improve flexibility in the hips?

It’s a powerful pose that can indeed improve flexibility in the hips. By extending one leg and bending the other, it opens up the hip flexors, stretches the inner thighs, and encourages freedom of movement in this area.

What is the spiritual significance of the Reverse Warrior pose?

The spiritual significance is the embodiment of strength and grace. By opening the heart and extending the spine, it allows one to tap into their inner warrior spirit, fostering a deep sense of empowerment and liberation.

How can I deepen my stretch?

To deepen your stretch, focus on lengthening the side body and sinking deeper into the front knee. Engage your core and breathe deeply to create more space and freedom in the pose.

Are there any specific breathing techniques to follow while practicing Reverse Warrior?

To enhance the practice of the posture, I recommend incorporating a specific breathing technique known as Ujjayi breath. This deep, audible breath helps to oxygenate the body and create a sense of calm and focus.


The Reverse Warrior pose, is a widely used standing yoga pose in the yoga practice. The word “Viparita” means “reverse,” which is indicative of the pose’s form. The name comes from the Hindu warrior, Virabhadra, and is a testament to the strength and resilience this pose cultivates.

The pose is a standing yoga pose that requires balance, strength, and flexibility. It is a pose that strengthens the legs, particularly when the front knee is bent and the back of your left thigh is parallel to the floor.

The front shin should be perpendicular to the floor, with the knee directly over the ankle, ensuring proper alignment. The right thigh, on the other hand, is kept straight and strong.

In this asana, the arms play a significant role. The arms should be aligned directly with the shoulders, one reaching forward and the other backward.

As you lift your right arm, the fingertips should be pointing to the top, towards the ceiling, while the left arm slides down the right thigh. The right bicep should be next to your ear as you come into a slight backbend, enhancing the stretch and opening of the chest.

The pose has many benefits. It improves flexibility in the spine and increases blood circulation within the body. This can be beneficial for those with low back pain. However, those with spinal or shoulder injuries, high or low blood pressure, or neck injuries should take care to keep their gaze forward in the pose instead of tilting the head backwards.

To get into the pose, start with your feet hip-distance apart and arms at your sides. Turn to the left and step both feet wide apart, about 4-5 feet. The front foot should be pointing to the top of the mat, with the back foot out 90 degrees. Bend your front knee so that your front thigh is parallel to the floor and keep your hips low.

The Reverse Warrior pose is a testament to the power and resilience of the human body. It is a pose that challenges and strengthens, offering numerous benefits for those who practice it regularly.

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