Be sure to exhale as you go into the warrior pose, and inhale as you go out of the pose. Think "strength" instead of "tense." Be careful to relax your muscles while in the warrior pose. Keep your face and neck relaxed. Breathe normally. Feel the warrior strength gathering inside you. Strength doesn't come from muscle contraction. Strength comes from the mind.
1. Stand with your feet three to four feet apart. Turn your right foot out, and turn your left foot so that it is facing slightly toward the right foot.
2. Bend your left leg into or close to a right angle and rotate your body to the right, directly in line with the left leg.
3. Raise both arms over your head with your palms facing each other. Look straight ahead or upward at your hands. If your shoulders are relaxed, bring your palms together. For those of us with tight shoulders, it's best to keep the hands apart, which will help the shoulders stay down away from the ears.
4. Keep your back foot firmly planted and your back leg straight. Push down on your back heel. Take three rich, full breaths.
5. Remember that lift of your arches in mountain pose? Notice what happens when you apply that technique here. Lift the toes of the back foot. Watch the arch slightly lift. Slowly place your toes back on the ground while maintaining the lift in the arch. As the toes touch the ground, let the lift of the arch ascend throughout the rest of your body. Breathe.
6. Return to the starting position and repeat on the other side.
7. Yoga Adventure: Bring your palms together and interlace your fingers over your head, while keeping your index fingers pointed straight up. Keep your shoulders down, away from your ears. Look up at your hands while keeping your neck strong. Imagine strength and energy shooting out of the tips of your index fingers. This variation intensifies the strength and energy of the warrior 1 pose.
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