The Hero Pose, or Virasana, is used for seated mediation and as a restful leg pose. The root of virasana is vira, the Sanskrit word for "hero" or "chief."
Benefits of the Hero Pose
The benefits of this asana include:
- Relief from leg swelling, especially during pregnancy
- Strengthened and limber arches of the feet, ankles, knees, and thighs
- Improved digestion
Step into the Pose
To Perform Hero Pose
- Begin in Child's Pose.
- Move your heels to either side of your buttocks.
- On an exhale, extend your torso up, using your hands to rotate the skin of the thighs outward.
- Sit on the floor, buttocks between your legs. (Note: some yogis perform this pose while sitting on their heels).
- Inhale, and rise up fully, keeping your back straight.
- Rest your palms on your thighs,
- Draw the shoulder blades down into the back, breathing deep into the belly to open the chest.
- Hold the pose for one minute or more, or five minutes if advanced.
If you have ankle or knee problems, seek assistance before attempting this position.
For more instructions on Hero Pose, visit Yoga Journal.
Using yoga equipment helps you ease in this pose, especially if your thighs are tight. Or try something handy and simple, like a folded blanket.