Recipe for a Happy Warrior II.

Via Brentan Schellenbach
on Sep 3, 2013
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john warrior 2

There are dozens of ways to enter and exit any of our poses.

It wasn’t until approximately two years ago that I started asking myself,

“Is this the best way to build this pose for me?”

And the answer I kept running into, over and over again, was: no.

I’m interested in building a yoga practice that straight up makes sense—a practice that makes me feel physically capable and free, and a practice that allows me to simply enjoy the experience that I’m having.

My intention is to enter every pose in a way that simply feels good. And when I feel good, everything about me is stronger.

One of my favorite project poses is Warrior II.

When I come into my Warrior II, I feel strong, open, soft and completely lightweight in my strength. But when I enter into it less than optimally, I feel crunchy, squishy, sharp, stiff and breakable.

This is what I love about Warrior II:

  • Develops strength and steadiness through the joints of the legs—ankles, knees and into the pelvis.
  • Engages the inner-thigh meridian to empower muscles close to the skeletal structure and take pressure out of outer hips and low back.
  • Opens the pelvic girdle and allows full hip expression in the front leg.
  • Encourages entire core engagement—from the front belly to the side waste, and wrapping around to the quadratus lumborum in the back spine.
  • Encourages softness through open shoulders.
  • Extension of the arms builds strength.
  • Archetype of the pose is set up in such a way that we make ourselves open and vulnerable to our opponent, yet we face away from them. There are huge implications there!
  • We are given the internal dynamic of figuring out how to engage where necessary and soften everywhere else. This is how we feel buoyancy in our poses.

When I enter into my Warrior II in a canonical, mindless way, I don’t feel these things. Often I’ll feel pinching in weird areas, weak in other areas and overall stressed out.

If this at all rings true for you, I’ve made a video that may help elucidate common pitfalls of entering into our Warrior II and how to build the most dynamic pose possible!

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Ed: Cat Beekmans


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About Brentan Schellenbach

Brentan Schellenbach is a yoga teacher, writer and spiritual truth seeker. She teaches and writes for Pilgrimage of the Heart yoga (http://www.pilgrimageyoga.com/) in San Diego, which serves over 1,000 yogis a week in person and online (https://www.pilgrimageyogaonline.com/). She is dedicated to the study of herself and the world around her and offers knowledgeable insight from these observations. Connect with her on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/YogaInYourLivingRoom/?ref=bookmarks) and Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/yogainyourlivingroom/) and keep up with the different studio writers online (https://www.facebook.com/pilgrimageyoga/). Take a class when you’re in town!

Comments

One Response to “Recipe for a Happy Warrior II.”

  1. Diana says:

    Thank you! This was fantastic. My back ankle always feels weak in Warrior II and now I think I understand why and can "fix" that.

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