Benefits: This pose strengthens the ankles, legs, abdominal muscles, shoulders and muscles of the back. Like all balance postures, it helps to improve balance, posture, and focus the mind.
Contraindications/Cautions: High blood pressure. Recent or chronic foot, ankle, knee, leg, or hip problems.
Recent or chronic lower back injuries. If you are pregnant, support the pose with the hands on a chair or some other support.
Deepen the pose: Advanced students can enter Virabhadrasana III from Virabhadrasana I. Perform the Warrior I with the arms stretched upward. Exhale the front torso down onto the top of the forward leg. From here move into Virabhadrasana III as described/demoed in the tutorial.
Lighten/vary the pose: You can vary the position of your arms - perhaps stretching the arms out to the sides, like the wings of an airplane, or reaching them back, palms facing up, along the sides of your torso.
Counterposes: Virabhadrasana III is usually performed as part of a standing pose sequence. To quieten down after a strong balancing posture you can come into Uttanasana, Deep Forward Fold.
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