Warrior 2 can be great for feeling the ground beneath your feet. Standing steadfast and confidently upon this volatile earth. Particularly if things aren´t feeling particularly stable! It´s often cited as being a pose that builds confidence. It´s strong, clear and powerful. Let´s be warriors (of love) together (sorry…)
Just like with any other yoga pose, it´s important to find the right spacing to fit your own body.
1) Breathe in a way that feels even and steady. Then take a wide step out with your feet vertical and place your hands on your hips. Start to concentrate your focus on the outline of your feet evenly pressing downwards. From that downward motion, feel your legs engage on the inside and outside.
2) Turn your right foot 45 degrees to the right. Keeping your left leg straight and strong, as you exhale, slowly bend your right knee until the front shin is vertical with the knee stacked over the ankle. If the knee overshoots the ankle, it´s just a sign you could use more distance between your feet. If you feel you have space, you can make your front thigh parallel with the floor. Take it easy though, your thigh might not want to go so deep so check in with the sensation and your breath at every step.
3) Keep a check on the front knee, if you can, veer it more towards the right (you might imagine your hips have a motion of pages opening in a book – the knees are moving away from each other).
4) Feel the placement of your hip points. If possible, try to keep them somewhat level. It´s quite common for the front hip to be lower, so if there is room gently encourage your pubic bone to lift. This should also discourage compressing the low back.
5) Option: If you feel stable enough, extend the arms out with the fingertips in line with the shoulders and press them away from each other. Feel the space between your collar bones. Relax your shoulders away from your ears.
6) Sometimes, you might notice the upper body wanting to lean towards the front leg. If possible, lean back a little, just enough to feel that your upper body is centered .Then imagine your spine lengthening upwards. Hold and feel the shape and sensation, then repeat the other side.
Duration: The great thing about your yoga practice is you can use the postures and length of the hold to compliment what you need. If you´re feeling a bit unsettled, try a long hold (up to 10 breaths) on each side to help settle things down. If you´re prone to powering through things no matter the situation, try shorter holds and not going in so deep. If you´re feeling a bit stagnant, try long holds (5 breaths) with repetition.
Modifications: It can be really helpful to use a wall to practice this pose. Option 1: stand with a wall behind you keeping your back, hips, shoulders, head and arms against or moving towards the wall. Option 2: keep the outer back foot pressing against a wall to help you “power up” the back leg.
Let me know how you go!