Elevated Wide Squat

Definition - What does Elevated Wide Squat mean?

Elevated wide squat is an intermediate standing yoga pose that requires and improves balance and leg strength. In this posture, the legs are stepped apart and the hips drop until the knees are over the ankles and the thighs are parallel to the ground. In the full expression of the pose, the heels lift so the yogi balances on the balls of the feet.

The pose is also known as goddess pose and by its Sanskrit name, utkata konasana.

Yogapedia explains Elevated Wide Squat

Elevated wide squat can utilize a variety of hand and arm positions, including raising the arms overhead shoulder-distance apart or with the palms touching. The hands can also be placed in prayer position at the heart center or may rest on the hips or thighs. In another common arm position, the arms stretch to the sides with the elbows bent at a 90-degree angle with the palms facing forward.

In addition to leg strength and balance, the benefits of elevated wide squat include:

  • Increased flexibility in the thighs
  • Lengthening of the spine
  • Energizing of the entire body
  • Improvement in concentration and focus
  • Stimulation of the cardiovascular and respiratory systems

Elevated wide squat is particularly beneficial for pregnant women, creating room in the pelvis. Yogis with flexibility or balance challenges may rest their hands on the back of a chair or a wall, or may do the pose with their back against a wall.

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