The Hindi Squat is wonderful for hip, knee and ankle flexibility. The trouble is that if you’re an adult in a developed country, you probably haven’t squatted for any length of time since you were a kid. I had the same problem when I began practicing yoga and BodyFlow. It ain’t easy.
Disclaimer: Consult your doctor before you try this at home, folks. Particularly if you have joint, muscle, or other health problems. I am not an expert. I’m just on a journey.
When I first attempted Hindi Squat, I couldn’t get my heels down. There are several videos online that demonstrate how to use props to support your heels until your flexibility improves. Also, I couldn’t drop my hips as low as I can now. It takes time and patience.
This is the way I get into the pose. I stand with feet wider than hips. I draw the belly in, bend the knees slightly and forward fold, resting my hands on the floor inside my feet. I contract the pelvic floor muscles, then bend the knees as I lower my hips to the floor. Once there, I lift the chest and bring my hands to prayer. I use my arms to press my knees open.
When I practice at home, I’m warmed up and stretched out before I attempt this pose. Going into it cold will make someone/something unhappy. I try to hold the pose for about thirty seconds–sometimes longer. I know some yogis who sit this way to watch television. More power to you.
They say adults in countries who assume this position regularly have fewer hip and knee replacements. That alone encourages me to try it. Other benefits include improved circulation, posture, flexibility, strength, endurance.
Here is a wonderful post by a physical therapist who explains it much better than I ever could.