Man holding shins because it hurts, Featured image for blog post titled Asian squat hurts shins

7 Most Common Reasons Asian Squat Hurts Shins (You Shouldn’t Ignore!😬)

The Asian squat is a common squatting position used in many Asian cultures that is used in place of sitting in a chair and is often seen in public spaces such as markets, parks, and on sidewalks that people sit in Asian squats. Asian squat is a deep squatting position where the person’s heels are on the ground, and the thighs touch the shins. Asian squats have been used as an exercise by many fitness enthusiasts as a stretch or compound exercise however, many people who incorporate the Asian squat into their exercise routine or daily life have reported that Asian squat hurts their shins.

In Asian countries people Asian squat for hours without any pain or hurt in their shins while on the other hand, some people’s shins hurt only after a few seconds of Asian squatting so In this blog post, we will explore the reasons Why shins hurt when doing an Asian squat, as well as methods for prevention and treatment.

7 Causes Asian Squat Hurts Shins

1. Asian Squat Hurts Shins due to Lack of Ankle Flexibility:

Asian squat can hurt shins if you lack ankle mobility

Asian squat can hurt your shins if you lack flexibility in your ankles since for doing an Asian squat you need to keep your feet flat on the ground which means you’ve to make an extended angle at your ankles. So if you Lake flexibility in your ankles, this effort of keeping your feet flat on the ground will put an extra strain not only on your ankles but also on your shins causing them to hurt. 

And this leaves us to the next cause of why the Asian squat hurts shins, which is lack of strength in the lower Leg muscles

2. Asian Squat Hurts Shins Due to Weakness in the Muscles of the Lower Leg:

weak muscles can cause shins to hurt
Free Stock photos by Vecteezy and America Vectors by Vecteezy

Your lower legs or your shins consist of two muscles (the tibialis anterior and the gastrocnemius) which are basically responsible for pushing your foot away from the shin (plantar flexion) and lifting your foot towards the shins (dorsiflexion) now this movement is important in order to bend your ankle to extended angle to be able to Asian squat properly and if these muscles are weak then you won’t be able to make a proper form of Asian squat which can hurt your shins.

illustration of plantar flexion
illustration of plantar flexion

3. Overdoing Asian Squat Hurts Shins:

If you are new to the Asian squat, it is important to start with a shorter duration and gradually increase the duration of holding your Asian squat over time To get a custom to this new style of squatting, jumping into a long Asian squatting session right away can be too much for your shins and can increase your risk of injury And can hurt shins.

4. Asian Squat Hurts Shins When Improper Technique is Used: 

Two men doing Asian squat one doing it deep other is not doing it deep
Two men doing Asian squat one doing it deep other is not doing it deep

Not doing the Asian squat with a proper form and allowing your knees to bend inwards, outwards, or forwards, etc. can put extra pressure on your shins and knees and eventually can cause your shins to hurt. The proper technique is discussed later in this blog post.

5. Poor Footwear: 

Now this one might sound obvious but still many of us ignore this. The best way to do an Asian  squat is to do it with your shoes off so that you can make a proper form while keeping your feet flat on the ground. Although there are no specific shoes for Asian squats, make sure you are not wearing high heels or something that’s uncountable because that can put pressure on your feet and you’re shins.

Asian squat can hurt shins if your shoes is not suitable
Free Stock photos by Vecteezy

Now if you are wearing some sort of shoes that don’t have enough cushioning or arc support this type of shoe can cause hurt or pain in your shins during Asian squats, shoes with not enough arc support can cause the feet to roll inward during the  Asian squat.

It just said that it is best to do Asian squat with your shoes off, but if you are doing it with your shoes on make sure you are wearing comfortable and well-fitted shoes such as athlete shoes cross trainers, or even minimal shoes that are comfortable.

6. Lack of Warm-Ups: 

Warm-ups are really important not just for Asian squat but for any kind of exercise this is because warm-ups prepare your body for upcoming exercises, warm-ups are to loosen up your joints and increase the blood flow to the muscles which will make them flexible and increase joint mobility which helps you to exercise more comfortably. If you skip proper warm-up that can cause your shins to hurt. 

man doing lunge as a warm up for Asian squat

When it comes to the Asian squat the best warm-up could be a light Cardio exercise jogging or jumping jacks you can also do you stretching after warm-ups, stretching the muscles of your legs and feet that are going to be used in performing the Asian squat before doing Asian squat to prevent hurting shins

Keep in mind though, It’s important to do stretching after a proper warm-up, as stretching cold muscles can cause injury.

7. Pre-Existing Conditions: 

If an individual has a pre-existing condition such as shin splints or other types of pain in the shins, the Asian squat can aggravate the condition and cause pain.

This refers to individuals who may already have a pre-existing condition such as shin splints or other types of pain in the shins that can be aggravated by performing the Asian squat.

Shin Splints:

Shin splints are a condition that affects your shinbone and causes pain along the inner edge of the shinbone. It is often caused by overuse, such as running or jumping, and can also be caused by poor footwear or a lack of stretching and warm-up. The Asian squat, which places a lot of stress on the shins, can aggravate this condition and cause pain.

Compartment Syndrome:

Your shins might hurt when you squat, which can be a sign that you have an underlying compartment syndrome,  let me explain what compartment syndrome is. So basically, compartment syndrome is a condition in the muscles of your legs in which pressure in the muscles results in restricted blood flow eventually causing pain and hurt.

Asian squat can hurt shins if you have COMPARTMENT SYNDROME

The causes of developing compartment syndrome can be many: trauma, crush injuries (part of your body is injured because extra pressure is put on it), surgery, broken bones, etc.

So, if you have compartment syndrome and you try to do an Asian squat, it is definitely going to hurt your shins,  so we recommend you to check with your healthcare provider if you feel any prolonged pressure, pain, hurt, or numbness.


Arthritis or inflammation in the lower leg joint can make it hard for you to Asian squat, these conditions can limit the range of motion and flexibility in the ankles and shins, making it difficult to perform the Asian squat with proper form.

Asian squat can hurt shins if you have Arthritis

The best, in this case, would be to stop the exercise and seek medical advice., as continuing to perform the Asian squat with pain can cause further injury and prolong recovery.

In summary, pre-existing conditions such as shin splints, compartment syndrome, arthritis, and previous injuries to the shins can cause pain during the Asian squat. It’s also important to pay attention to any pain you experience during the Asian squat, and if necessary, stop the exercise and seek medical advice.

How to Prevent Asian Squats From Hurting Shins?

To prevent and treat shin pain from the Asian squat, there are several things you can do. Stretching and strengthening exercises for the ankles and lower legs are great ways to warm up your lower body before performing the Asian squat, which can help to improve flexibility and strength in these areas, making it easier to perform the Asian squat without pain. Examples of exercises include calf stretches, ankle rotations and ankle pumps.

Proper technique is also crucial for preventing and treating shin pain from the Asian squat. 

So, what is a proper technique you might ask,  so, these are some of the points you need to keep in mind.

Keeping your heels on the ground.

Making sure your knees stay behind your toes, which is going to help you distribute the weight more evenly across your legs and reduce the strain and hurt in your shins.

Keeping your back straight.

Using proper footwear, comfortable and well-fitting shoes with good support can help prevent injuries and pain in your shins.

We also have a blog post on How to do an Asian squat properly, you can check that out for an in-depth tutorial.

If performing an Asian squat hurts your shin, taking a rest from the Asian squat for a few days or a week can help to reduce inflammation and pain. another thing you can do to help you reduce short-term pain and inflammation is Icing the affected area, though it’s important to note that if your shin hurts for a prolonged period of time or if it becomes severe, it’s best to seek advice from a healthcare professional.

Let’s Conclude:

In this blog post, we have discussed 7 most common reasons your shins can hurt from an Asian squat, don’t get me wrong the Asian squat is a beneficial exercise for many people, but it can have some cons as well including hurting shins if you lack ankle flexibility, have weakness in the muscles of the lower leg, or you do it for longer time or with improper technique. However, by understanding the causes of shins can hurt from an Asian squat and taking steps to prevent and treat it, such as stretching and strengthening exercises for the ankles and lower legs, proper technique, rest, and ice, it is possible to continue using the Asian squat as a part of a healthy exercise.

If You want to get similar benefits that Asian squat offers like mobility, flexibility, extended range of motion, improved balance and coordination, but Asian squat is not your thing then try these 11 Asian squat alternative.