\ ˈskwät How to pronounce squat (audio) \
squatted; squatting

Definition of squat

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to cause (oneself) to crouch or sit on the ground
2 : to occupy as a squatter

intransitive verb

1 : to crouch close to the ground as if to escape observation a hare squatting in the grass
2a : to assume or maintain a position in which the body is supported on the feet and the knees are bent so that the buttocks rest on or near the heels squatted by the campfire
b : to exercise by performing a squat (see squat entry 3 sense 3a)
3 : to be or become a squatter squat in an abandoned building


squatter; squattest

Definition of squat (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : sitting with the haunches close above the heels
2a : low to the ground
b : marked by disproportionate shortness or thickness



Definition of squat (Entry 3 of 3)

1a : the act of squatting
b : the posture of one that squats
2a : a place where one squats
b : the lair of a small animal the squat of a hare
3a : an exercise in which a standing person lowers to a position in which the torso is erect and the knees are deeply bent and then rises to an upright position

Note: A squat can be done while holding weights, with a barbell on the upper back, or without weights.

b weight lifting : a lift involving a squat done while holding a barbell on the shoulders also : a competitive event involving this lift
4 chiefly British : an empty house or building that is occupied by squatters
5 slang : diddly-squat

Other Words from squat


squatly adverb
squatness noun

Examples of squat in a Sentence

Verb He squatted behind the bush to avoid being seen. A family has been squatting in that house for months. Noun He didn't do squat all day. She lives in a squat.
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Keep a neutral spine throughout the movement, and be mindful to not overextend your back at the peak of the swing or squat too low on the return. Hayden Carpenter, Outside Online, 23 Nov. 2019 Then squat over it and do your business directly into the bag. Krista Langlois, Outside Online, 25 Apr. 2022 Selena Gomez headed over to Elle Fanning, adjusting the elegant cape of her red dress to squat down and speak with the sitting star at eye level. Charles Trepany, USA TODAY, 14 Mar. 2022 What if gargantuan Arnold Schwarzenegger and squat Danny DeVito were somehow Twins? John Defore, The Hollywood Reporter, 14 Feb. 2022 One of Cavaliere's all-time favorite leg exercises is the Bulgarian split squat. Philip Ellis, Men's Health, 12 Feb. 2022 The soldiers left the scene shortly after one of them seemed to squat and check on the moving body, Abdulrahman has said. Washington Post, 17 Jan. 2022 Most guys his size can’t squat down and grab their toes without their heels coming off the ground. Chris Hays, orlandosentinel.com, 26 Jan. 2022 Studying the heat from these infant galaxies, astronomers say, could provide important clues to when and how the supermassive black holes that squat in the centers of galaxies form. New York Times, 25 Dec. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Basketball players as thin as pencils, bow-legged squat weightlifters, boxers with huge hands like gorillas and cauliflower ears and squashed noses. New York Times, 9 May 2022 Stand in a normal back squat position, barbell across your shoulders, feet between shoulder- and hip-width apart, toes slightly out. Greg Presto, Men's Health, 24 Apr. 2022 With your knees slightly bent in a squat-like position, take ten steps to one side. Jason Fitzgerald, Outside Online, 27 Aug. 2019 With 20 floors, the prefabricated high-rise had loomed over the nearby squat, beige Soviet-era buildings in the New Lake neighborhood almost as soon as construction started around 2011. New York Times, 30 Mar. 2022 La Corregidora becomes a city unto itself when Querétaro’s soccer team plays at home, with thousands of noisy vendors and fans filling the squat oval stadium and the unpaved parking lots that surround it. Los Angeles Times, 20 Mar. 2022 The footage also revealed a ghostly-white animal that scientists believe is a deep-sea squat lobster. Corryn Wetzel, Smithsonian Magazine, 14 Mar. 2022 But though the water resists Joyce’s famous description, the squat, round stone tower belongs almost completely now to the book. Anne Enright, The New York Review of Books, 5 Jan. 2022 Its squat brick buildings hunched inward over little courtyards, backs to the surrounding city, as if to hide what happened within. Evan Allen, BostonGlobe.com, 30 Dec. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Be ready to do more reps of moves that work larger muscle groups (like the squat) and fewer reps of moves that work smaller muscle groups (like the chest press). Jenny Mccoy, SELF, 12 Feb. 2022 Bend your knees and push your butt back to sink into a squat, keeping the weight in your heels. Jenny Mccoy, Outside Online, 13 July 2021 Inhale, brace your abdomen and lower into a squat with your arms out in front at shoulder distance for counterbalance. Dana Santas, CNN, 19 Apr. 2022 For his entire career, New York Mets catcher James McCann has dropped into his squat behind home plate and cycled through the incoming pitch's sign sequence by pointing and flipping his right fingers between his legs. Chris Bumbaca, USA TODAY, 8 Apr. 2022 Immediately jump feet apart and sink into a squat again. Jenny Mccoy, SELF, 12 Jan. 2022 Slowly rock back into a squat to get out of the stand. Hayden Carpenter, Outside Online, 10 Mar. 2021 While the pushup version of this challenge is a popular one on YouTube, 'Bring Sally Up' dates back as far as seven years, and has been used to test endurance on other bodyweight exercises including the squat and pullup. Philip Ellis, Men's Health, 9 Apr. 2022 Until recently, this squat, ruined house was a place where bodies were ripped apart and incinerated, where the remains of some of Mexico’s missing multitudes were obliterated. MarÍa Verza, ajc, 28 Feb. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'squat.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of squat


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1580, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for squat


Middle English squatten to crush, crouch in hiding, from Middle French (Picard dialect) esquatir, escuater, from Old French es- ex- + quatir to hide, from Vulgar Latin *coactire to squeeze, alteration of Latin coactare to compel — more at cache

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The first known use of squat was in the 15th century

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Dictionary Entries Near squat

squash yellow



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Last Updated

15 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Squat.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/squat. Accessed 23 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for squat


\ ˈskwät How to pronounce squat (audio) \
squatted; squatting

Kids Definition of squat

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : to crouch by bending the knees fully so as to sit on or close to the heels
2 : to settle without any right on land that someone else owns
3 : to settle on government land in order to become its owner


squatter; squattest

Kids Definition of squat (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : low to the ground
2 : having a short thick body



Kids Definition of squat (Entry 3 of 3)

: a position in which the knees are fully bent and the body sits on or close to the heels

More from Merriam-Webster on squat

Nglish: Translation of squat for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of squat for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about squat


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