This asana is so named for the fierce mythological Hindu warrior, Virabhadra. Traditionally, viparita Virabhadrasana is believed to open the manipura chakra. By activating this chakra, the asana creates a sense of self-confidence, self-esteem and energy. Manipura also controls digestion and metabolism.
Viparita Virabhadrasana is a particularly beneficial pose for those with sedentary jobs. It's important for stretching the arms and sides of the torso, strengthening the lower body and opening the hips. It also opens the chest and builds core strength. Other benefits include increased blood circulation, reduction in fatigue, calming of the mind, perseverance and improved balance.
In a variation, both legs remain extended and straight, as in trikonasana (triangle pose). Virabhadrasana 1 and 2 are good preparatory poses for this asana.