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How to Do the Yoga-with-Weights Exalted Warrior Exercise

The yoga-with-weights Exalted Warrior makes use of a classic yoga pose — the victorious warrior. You feel the strength, honor, and courage of a warrior as you do this exercise; it sends a surge of power through your entire body. It strengthens and tones your upper torso, opens your collarbone, teaches you to work the core muscles of your trunk for balance, and strengthens your legs.

Pick up your hand weights for this exercise and follow these steps:

  1. Stand with your feet together and your toes pointing forward, and allow the hand weights to dangle at your sides with your palms facing backward.

  2. Gently step back with your right foot, keeping your legs straight.

    Turn your back foot slightly out for balance and stability. Align your shoulders with your hips.

    Make sure your legs are strong and engaged. Let your back and your front leg support you.

  3. Raise your arms forward until they’re directly above your shoulders.

    This is the starting position. Draw your belly in and up and point your tailbone down throughout the rest of the exercise.

  4. As you exhale to a count of four, pull your arms down, bending your elbows and holding the weights at ear-level.

    This movement is what weightlifters call a back-lat pull-down. Pull down with your lats — the muscles on your back around your shoulder blades — as well as with your shoulders. Don’t let your wrists flop or cock back as you do this exercise; keep them aligned with your forearms.

  5. As you inhale to a count of four, press the weights back up to the starting position.

Do this exercise six to eight times on each leg, pause to rest, and then do the exercise six to eight more times on each leg.

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