Peaceful Warrior Pose - Shanti Virabhadrasana

Peaceful Warrior Pose - YanvaYoga


The Peaceful Warrior Pose, also known as Reverse Warrior Pose or Shanti Virabhadrasana (SHAN-tee VEER-ah-bhah-DRAH-sah-nah), is a powerful lunge combined with a graceful backbend. It is often utilized as a transitional pose or to seamlessly connect other postures in a vinyasa practice.

The name of this pose originates from Sanskrit, with “shanti” meaning “peace,” “vira” representing “hero,” “bhadra” symbolizing “friend,” and “asana” denoting “pose” or “posture.”

Shanti Virabhadrasana offers numerous benefits, including improved flexibility in the back, strengthened legs, feet, and abdominal muscles, hip opening, elongation of the arms, torso, and spine. When practiced mindfully, it can also aid in relieving back pain.

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1
Start by assuming Warrior Two pose, with your left foot positioned forward.
Step 2
Rotate your left hand towards the sky. Inhale deeply as you extend your left arm upward and backward, gently arching your torso into a mild backbend. Direct your gaze upwards.
Step 3
Lower your back arm until it rests on your right thigh or calf.
Step 4
Continue to breathe steadily while maintaining the pose.
Step 5
Transition to the other side, switching the positioning of your feet and repeating the sequence.

Benefits and Contraindications


Improves the flexibility in the spine

Stretches the side of the upper body

Opens heart and smoothens the hips

Strengthens the leg muscles

Calms the nervous system

Improves balance


Knee or back injury

Neck issues

Balance difficulties

Photo poses in different angles

Modifications and Props for Beginners

Peaceful Warrior Pose is a great way to add flexibility to the spine and prepare the body for many other poses throughout your practice. Remember to take it slowly and never push your body to achieve a deeper backbend. Try these simple changes in the pose to find a variation that works for you:

  • If your hips are tight, shorten your stance and straighten your front leg to a degree that is comfortable as you work on gaining flexibility.
  • If you have a shoulder injury or if you are still building upper body strength, place your hands on your hips. Work on lifting your chest and lengthening your spine without over-straining your arms and shoulders.

Useful Tips

  • For beginners, keep your back hand on the upper thigh.
  • The more open you become in the side body, you can begin to move your back hand down the back leg.
  • Avoid placing your hand directly on to the back knee.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long should I hold Peaceful Warrior Pose?

You can hold the pose for as long as it feels comfortable, typically around 30 seconds to 1 minute. Repeat on the other side.

Can beginners do Peaceful Warrior Pose?

Yes, beginners can do this pose, but they may need to modify it by using a block or placing their hand on their hip for support. It’s important to work within your own range of motion and not push too far beyond your limits.

Are there any precautions to take while doing Peaceful Warrior Pose?

If you have any injuries or medical conditions that affect your knees, hips, or shoulders, it’s important to talk to your doctor or a qualified yoga instructor before attempting this pose. You should also avoid this pose if you have any pain or discomfort in your knees or hips. Always work within your own range of motion and listen to your body.

Iana Varshavska
Iana Varshavska
Website administrator

A digital marketer in love with yoga and everything that goes along with it. In 2021, her huge passion for yoga led her to yoga teacher trainings. After successfully completing her studies, Iana received her Yoga Alliance U.S. certification, left the corporate IT world and devoted herself to the development of Yanva. To be able to create the best online yoga space for yoga enthusiasts like her, Iana is constantly learning and improving her skills in various aspects of yoga philosophy, anatomy and biomechanics. Since 2021, she has continued to attend various types of teacher training, including yoga therapy, gives online and offline classes, and conducts local workshops for people who want to learn more about yoga. At the moment, Iana continues to work on her personal practice, improving her hand balancing skills, as well as developing her own training programs.