In my most recent practice session, we went through an extensive flow of
Warrior poses (Virabhadrasana I, II, III). I quite enjoy all three warrior poses
for different reasons but what I want to explore with this post is the "missing"
Warrior IV and V poses.
What? You ask. I didn't know there are more than three!
Well, I guess there isn't. But moving through the handful of
repeated Warrior poses, I started to wonder where these other two poses, Humble Warrior and Reverse Warrior, fit in.
If you are not familiar, Humble Warrior (also known as Devotional Warrior), is in the lunge
position with the arms clasped behind the back and the torso bent forward over
the front thigh. I have rarely done this pose so when I heard the teacher call it by name, I had a mental stoppage and wondered am I missing a Warrior.
As the flow continued, we moved into Reverse Warrior (also known as Crescent Pose or Proud Warrior). I have to admit I love this pose but never knew its name either. It is in an open lunge position (hips are open, facing side ways) where the back arm reaches back for the rear thigh and the front arm reaches over the head. With such flexibility in my hips and hamstrings, my body is able to reach back far and thus, I get a phenomenal stretch!
I went digging into my sources to discover that truly, these two poses are
actually a variation of either Warrior I or Warrior II. And they are not
considered traditional yoga poses as they do not have Sanskrit names. Oh,
that's why they really are not numbered like the other three distinct poses. But what I did find is that all five poses are considered Warrior poses.
Case solved. To read a comprehensive overview of a Warrior sequence, click here. And a bit more on the history of the Warrior poses, click here. It's an interesting read if you know nothing about the poses origin.
Putting the pieces together - one at a time,
Photo credit: yogamama.co.uk's photostream
Aspiring Yoga Teacher
I've practiced yoga since I was a pre-teen and have always found it to keep me centered. I will be a teacher one day and this is my journey to discover teaching and practice.