In this article we look at how to do Chair pose. The pose is also known as Utkatasana, Utkatasana is a Sanskrit term composed of two words: “Utkata,” which means fierce, powerful or intense, and “asana,” which means pose.
Hence, Utkatasana translates to ‘Fierce Pose,’ often referred to in English as ‘Chair Pose’ because it looks like you are sitting on a chair.
This name reflects the intense nature of the pose and the strength and stamina required to maintain it.
Benefits of Chair Pose
Chair pose has several benefits for your mind and body.
Physically, it is an excellent way to build strength throughout the entire body, including the abdomen, chest, quadriceps, ankles and feet.
It helps in developing a strong core and increases balance and stability.
Chair pose also engages and strengthens the shoulder muscles.
Practicing Chair Pose ignites the inner fire and holding the pose for extended periods builds mental stamina, endurance and determination.
When you practice this pose regularly you will see real results in your daily life. You will be calmer under pressure, able to focus on tasks much longer and be more resilient when things do not go your way.
How to Do Chair Pose
To correctly perform Chair Pose, you should…
Start by stand up straight feet shoulder width part and firmly rooted to the ground shoulders relaxed . Inhale and raise your arms overhead, with biceps just slightly in front of your ears. You can either keep the arms parallel, palms facing inward, or join the palms.
Exhale and bend your knees, aiming to get your thighs as parallel to the floor as possible. The knees will project out over the feet, and the trunk will lean slightly forward over the thighs until the front torso forms approximately a right angle with the tops of the thighs.
Keep the inner thighs parallel to each other and press the heads of the thigh bones down toward the heels.
Firm the shoulder blades against the back. Direct the tailbone down toward the floor and inward toward the pubis to keep the lower back long.
Maintain the pose for 30 seconds to a minute.
To finish, straighten your knees with an inhalation, lifting strongly through the arms. Exhale and release your arms to your sides.
My Experience With Chair Pose
Practicing Chair Pose has been transformative for my body and mind.
I can feel my thighs, ankles and core getting stronger. Because of this I feel more stable and powerful when I stand and move.
When I stretch my arms overhead it feels great. My shoulders and back feel better and a niggling shoulder injury I had has gone.
When I started holding chair pose for ten minutes at a time I noticed my focus at work improved and I was more present around people.
My determination also improved. Going from holding the pose for a minute, then two and up to 10 minutes really challenged my monkey mind. Several times I wanted to quit. My mind was telling me I was wasting my time and that I could not handle it.
I kept going and eventually entered a flow like state.
Try it in the morning before starting your day, I found after holding this pose I’m ready for anything the day has to offer.
The chair pose looks simple but once you try it, you see how challenging it is.
The best thing is to start slowly and build up. This is one of those poses that you will notice benefits in your everyday life quickly. If you find it difficult, start with desk yoga and then progress from their.
It is a safe pose to do because it does not involve and sudden movements or twists, so start and experience it’s benefits.