From the lunge posture bring the torso upright keeping the legs in a similar or slightly shorter stance. The back heel may remain up or you can shorten the stance to bring the foot flat. The hips should remain facing forward. Bring both arms up towards the ceiling and gaze slightly up. If this hurts the back, bring the arms out to the sides in a goal post shape instead.
Effects and Benefits
Physical – Virabhadrasana I stretches and tones the legs. It gives strength to the body as well as stretching the shoulders and the back. It opens the heart and chest. It also strengthens various other areas of the body like the ankles and helps to increase ones walking stride so that steps are more effective.
Spiritual – Virabhadra means the excellent warrior or the excellent hero. It is the name of a very powerful servant of Lord Shiva. Practicing this posture gives rise to a feeling of strength and heroism within. It is a powerful posture that helps one to feel a sensation of empoweredness rather than powerlessness.