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Virasana
(Hero Pose)

Virasana pose

How to perform Hero Pose

Fold your legs under you with your heels on either side of your buttocks. Keep your back straight, avoid sinking forward or back. This pose is to be avoided if you lack mobility in your knee joints due to injuries. Cross your legs instead or assume the Baddha Konasana position.

What is Virasana?

Virasana, or Hero Pose, is one of the poses that can be used during seated meditation. If used in a more flowing and dynamic sequence, it serves as a great transition between various poses (like Chaturanga Dandasana and Adho Mukha Svanasana), offering the practitioner a chance to restore their breath and reconnect to their body midway.

As you go to sit your buttocks down, pull your calf muscle away from the knee and outwards. This will create more space as you go to sit down. Resist the urge for your back to sink forward or tip backwards. Shift your weight into the front of your shin bone. Keep your spine long and extend through the crown of your head. Your arms stay dynamic as they reach forward and your chest and shoulders stay open, allowing you to take deeper fuller breaths.

When to use Virasana?

This pose can be used separately from your regular practice, as a form of seated meditation. Making sure your back stays straight and your chest is open and pointing straight forwards requires a certain amount of concentration. This means that this pose is very useful for calming your mind and for drawing your focus to the present moment.

Virasana is also typically assumed after inversions as a way of helping you rechannel your blood flow and get grounded before carrying on with the rest of your practice. Moreover, this position allows the practitioner to gently stretch their knee joints, promoting health and mobility in the knees. For this reason, it is recommended to those suffering from rheumatic pains in the knees. However, if the full pose is too strenuous on your knees, placing a block or folded blankets under your buttocks can be helpful.

This is one of the few poses that can be performed right after meals and, in fact, is said to relieve heaviness in the stomach after a heavy meal.

Video sequences that include this pose