Featured Pose - Virabradrasana II - Warrior II

Virabradrasana II or Warrior II is a strong standing pose  that helps build stamina and will power while aligning the spine.
Mr. Iyengar wrote that this pose can help relieves stiffness in the shoulders and back, tones up the ankles and knees and cures stiffness of the neck.

I started with some photos of the pose showing the variations first.
Below that is a video of a pose.

Start in Tadasana (mountain pose).
Then place the back (left) foot at the wall to give support to the back leg. 
Step the front leg out about 4 feet from the back foot.
Raise the arms parallel to the floor, left hand at the wall for support and to gently push into to release the shoulders down the back.
Cut the right leg out 90 degrees, aligning the front heel with the instep of the back foot.

As you press into the back foot, keeping it straight, bend the front knee to 90 degrees.  Keep the shin, knee and thigh in alignment by moving the knee towards the little toe side.  Gaze over the front hand keeping the breath smooth and steady.
Repeat on other side.
Variation II - have a chair and foam pad
In this variation you can stay in the pose a bit longer.  The chair allows the legs to stretch more, creates width in the pelvis and lift and open the chest.
With the seat of the chair facing in place the chair at the right side of the mat.
Then step the right leg through the chair.
Turn the right leg out 90 degrees as did in pose above.
Bend the right knee to 90 degrees. Use the back rest of the chair to keep the upper body lifting up.
The chair seat supports the right buttock.
Press firmly into the back foot, keep the leg straight by tightening the knee.
Raise the arms parallel to the floor. Turn the head to look over the front hand.

 If a bit taller use the foam block on the seat of the chair.

This is Virabradrasana II in quicktime.  Fun to watch.
 Part I
This is my first attempt at uploading a video to my blog.
Even though only about a minute and a half I had to divide the pose into two short videos.
I will try and figure out how to upload all as one video for the next one.
 Part II
Pamela Nelson