Utkatasana (Chair Pose)

(OOT-kah-TAH-sah-nah)  / utkata = “fierce”

The word utkata (उत्कट) in Sanskrit means “wild, or furious, or fierce”. This asana increases strength, balance and stability.

Instructions for Chair Pose

  • Stand at the front of your mat.
  • Inner edges of your feet are together, toes and heels aligned.
  • Lift the toes and spread them and set them down while grounding your foundation into all 4 corners of your feet.
  • Tighten your kneecaps, pulling them up. This also tightens your thigh muscles (quadriceps), so tighten those even more and pull those up, too.
  • Now tighten your buttocks.
  • Your weight is distributed evenly between the two hips.
  • Pull your belly in and abdomen up.
  • Roll your shoulders back. You’re tall.
  • Shoulder are broad. Chest is broad.
  • Soft face. Relax your jaw, mouth closed, lips together.
  • Your head, neck, and spine should all be in a straight line.
  • Hands are at your side, palms facing in, fingers together.
  • Look forward, gazing toward the tip of your nose.

Modifications for Utkatasana

  • Squeeze a block between your thighs for some stability.
  • Stand with your back to the wall and get into the pose, resting your tailbone against the wall
Chair Pose - Utkatasana