• J. Kip

    That’s funny– I was just thinking about that. My grandmother (from Japan) hated this position and said it was something ‘farmers’ did (she looked down on farmers…long story). I kind of hate it myself….looks like someone pooping. I can do it, but I don’t. Guess tutu got her subliminal message in.

    (I know this post is 2 yrs old, but…idk, just wanted to join in).

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  • DL

    ever see how gymnastics coaches force crazy stretches on little kids in Russian and China? That’s how they get flexible

    If you do it when you’re young and continue until you are an adult…of course you can still do it. Worthless article.

  • Anondragon

    It is a racial factor for sure.
    Of course other races can do it, but it take practice.
    The evidence that its a racial factor is common sense. From childhood Asian kids know how to do it. Its natural. While pure European kids (im European) cannot do it. You naturally go into a position that you are favorable with, and Europeans dont Asian squat because for most of our bodies its uncomfortable. And I am not talking about Americans but skinny Europeans like me who have normal weight.

    I am European of the “classic type”, that is Tall, blond blue eyed, etc. What I noticed is that this classic type of Europe like me, have LONG QUADRICEPS and long calves but still slightly shorter than quadriceps. Look at Greek statues which are naked to understand this. So naturally when we squat very low like Asians, we lose balance. Asians I noticed tend to have less full legs and buttocks, and stronger longer calves. Hence the weight point is shifted to the calves which gives them strong balance in that position.

    However…In my opinion there are many instances were the European type is favorable, for instance for swimming, our buttocks and quadriceps give us alot of power.

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  • Jonathan

    No, it’s just a matter of squatting on the toilet every day. See http://www.naturesplatform.com/health_benefits.html for more info.

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  • O rly

    what kind of racist crap is this?
    scottish/german grew up in nyc, i always have been able to squat and any time i feel like it i do,such as waiting for the train,not that people don’t give me weird looks when i do.
    i think it is far more cultural then anything as stupid as biological
    in the west “to sit” implies sitting on a chair.
    anything lower is seen as bad manners, or lack of class(literally, poor, homeless, ect.)
    no one of any wealth or status would be caught sitting anyway except for erect and on a chair.

  • O rly

    “my parents never told me not to squat (you know, “sit ladylike!”) ”

    bingo!
    its purely a cultural taboo, and since people in the west discourage it, people are less able to later in life since its a position their body is not used to.

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  • Torben Pasucha

    It’s way easy to do, I think the Westerners who can’t do it at all just get the footing wrong because they do the same position they’re used to for squatting.

    I noticed I need tow ork to maintain balance when I look up though. I guess I have too much belly/ass fat!

  • Torben Pasucha

    I’s better for your back anyway.

  • MrHotPickles

    If you try to do this and you can’t make it work, try pointing your toes outward and spread your feet a little wider. At some point, your heels will touch the ground. If you look at the kids in the photo above, only the little girl has her heels on the ground. Apparently the boys are doing it wrong. 🙂

  • kim dobrin

    my friend can do it quite easily,and he is stocky,and totally non-flexible.

  • kim dobrin

    if they are not flat it is just an ordinary squat.It has to be an extention of standing and just sitting instead of standing.Must be flat footed to be comfortable

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  • YunYun Liu

    Uhm, born and raised in america. Never used an asian style toilet. Just tried it. Squat with completely flat foot naturally first time. yawn

  • YunYun Liu

    born and raised in texas. did it first try easily in college without having “learned” it. I would agree with genetic flexibility on this one

  • Chris DeYoung

    I’m a 36 year old, 6’3″, Caucasian-American male. I’m also somewhat thin. I can easily and comfortably do an “Asian squat”. I work as a construction electrician and do sometimes work in a squatting position. I believe the ability to do an “Asian squat is likely mostly related to a person’s flexibility, which allows a person to squat in this manner and maintain a center of balance. Genetics may prevent some people from doing it due to body proportions being disproportionate per the average (see “Golden Ratio”).

  • kim dobrin

    everyone squats when young.I really wanted to make sure my son could always squat,but when he was 4 he lost interest. The western posture is the reason, and sitting on bad chairs.The first time I got to India, I could not believe old people could squat easier than a 20 year old fit man (me).I’m 60 now,and for the last 3 years I can’t do it anymore.Just got lazy, stopped yoga, put on weight etc

  • Anton Keiser

    I know I’m joining the discussion here late, as most of these comments are at least four years old, but oh well. I’m a Caucasian American, no Asian descent whatsoever, and I can and have always been able to do the Asian squat perfectly and for long periods of time. I’m also 6’2″, so I don’t think height has anything to do with it. I’m a believer in the tight calves theory. As my girlfriend (who is 5’7″ and Caucasian) can do it easily too. My younger brother can do the squat also, and he is slightly taller than I am. My cousin is six four and can’t really do it, but he also isn’t quite as flexible as I am in the calves. He’s the one who brought this topic to my attention in the first place.

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