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Reverse Warrior Yoga Pose – Anjana Virabhadrasana

reverse warrior or exalted warrior - Viparita Virabhadrasana

Anjana Virabhadrasana

[AHN-jah-na veer-ah-bah-DRAHS-anna]

Anjana comes from the root word ‘anj’ to anoint with honour. As a noun, anjana is also one of the thousand mythical serpents. Anjana is also one of the four guardian elephants of Space.

The feminine form of Anjana is the mother of Hanumat or Hanuman, the celebrated monkey god of the Ramayana. In her previous birth, Anjana was a goddess. However, due to a curse that was placed on her, she was born as a monkey in the Himalayas. The birth of her son (Hanuman the monkey God) lifted the curse. Soon after Hanuman’s birth, Anjana ascended to svarga (heaven).

Benefits of Reverse Warrior

  • Strengthens the lower body and realigns the shoulders and hips.
  • Builds strength and determination.
  • Opens the heart and lungs for deeper breathing.


  • Modifications might be necessary for those who suffer from leg, knee, ankle, or foot pain.
  • Recently suffered a stroke or a heart attack.


    • Start in mountain pose. Step back with your left foot into warrior stance. Your feet should be one leg distance apart plus one foot. This step is one foot longer than triangle stance.
    • Your front foot is parallel to the edges of the mat lengthwise. Your back foot is turned out so the outside edge of the foot is almost parallel to the back of the mat.
    • Make sure the knee of the back leg stays in neutral and is facing the same direction as your toes.
    • Feel the spine balanced right in between your feet.
    • Bend the front knee and make sure it stays in line with the ankle, but does not extend over it.
    • If it is available to you, allow your knee to bend until the front thigh is parallel to the floor.
    • Lower your back arm and hand onto your back leg.
    • Lift your front arm and hand in line with the back arm.
    • Relax your shoulders away from your ears and allow the shoulder-blades to slide down into your back pockets.
    • Feel an opening across the chest.
    • Release the arms to the sides, straighten the front knee and step the back foot up to meet the front, returning to mountain pose.

Preparatory Poses

Counter Poses