How Do You Say “Kneel” In Spanish?

Learning a new language can be a daunting task, but it can also be incredibly rewarding. Spanish is a popular language to learn due to its widespread use in many countries and its cultural significance. Whether you are planning a trip to a Spanish-speaking country or simply want to expand your language skills, learning Spanish can open up a world of opportunities.

So, how do you say “kneel” in Spanish? The word for “kneel” in Spanish is “arrodillarse”. This verb is commonly used in both formal and informal settings, and it is important to know if you want to communicate effectively in Spanish.

How Do You Pronounce The Spanish Word For “Kneel”?

Learning how to properly pronounce a word in a foreign language can be a daunting task, but with a little guidance, it can be manageable. The Spanish word for “kneel” is “arrodillarse”, which may seem like a mouthful at first, but with some practice, you’ll be able to pronounce it with ease.

Phonetic Breakdown

Here is a phonetic breakdown of the Spanish word “arrodillarse”:

Phoneme Symbol
/a/ ah
/r/ rr
/o/ oh
/d/ d
/i/ ee
/ll/ y
/a/ ah
/r/ rr
/s/ s
/e/ eh

When pronounced correctly, “arrodillarse” should sound like “ah-rroh-dee-yar-seh”.

Tips For Pronunciation

  • Pronounce the “r” sound in “arrodillarse” with a trill, similar to the “r” sound in the word “red”.
  • Make sure to emphasize the syllables “ar”, “di”, and “llar” when pronouncing the word.
  • The “ll” sound in Spanish is pronounced like the “y” sound in English, so make sure to enunciate it clearly.

With these tips and a little practice, you’ll be able to confidently pronounce “arrodillarse” in no time!

Proper Grammatical Use Of The Spanish Word For “Kneel”

When communicating in a foreign language, it’s important to pay close attention to grammar to ensure that your message is clear and accurate. The same is true when using the Spanish word for “kneel,” which is “arrodillarse.”

Placement Of Kneel In Sentences

The placement of “arrodillarse” in a sentence depends on the intended meaning. In Spanish, the verb typically comes after the subject and before the object, but there are exceptions. For example, if the sentence begins with “para” (meaning “in order to”), “arrodillarse” would come after “para.”

Here are some examples:

  • “Él se arrodilló ante ella” (He kneeled before her)
  • “Para pedir perdón, debes arrodillarte” (To ask for forgiveness, you must kneel)

Verb Conjugations Or Tenses

Like all Spanish verbs, “arrodillarse” must be conjugated to match the subject and tense of the sentence. The present tense conjugations are:

Subject Pronoun Conjugation
Yo me arrodillo
te arrodillas
Él/Ella/Usted se arrodilla
Nosotros/Nosotras nos arrodillamos
Vosotros/Vosotras os arrodilláis
Ellos/Ellas/Ustedes se arrodillan

It’s important to note that the reflexive pronoun “se” must be used with “arrodillarse.”

Agreement With Gender And Number

In Spanish, nouns and adjectives must agree with the gender and number of the subject. Since “arrodillarse” is a reflexive verb, it doesn’t have a gender or number. However, any accompanying nouns or adjectives must agree with the subject.

For example:

  • “Ella se arrodilló sobre las rodillas” (She kneeled on her knees)
  • “Los fieles se arrodillaron ante el altar” (The faithful kneeled before the altar)

Common Exceptions

One common exception to the placement of “arrodillarse” is when using the imperative form. In this case, the reflexive pronoun “se” is dropped and the verb is placed at the beginning of the sentence.

For example:

  • “¡Arrodíllate!” (Kneel!)

Another exception is when using the past participle “arrodillado.” In this case, the past participle agrees with the subject and can be placed before or after the subject.

For example:

  • “El hombre arrodillado” or “El arrodillado hombre” (The kneeling man)

Examples Of Phrases Using The Spanish Word For “Kneel”

Understanding how to say “kneel” in Spanish can be useful when communicating with Spanish-speaking individuals in a variety of contexts. Here are some common phrases that include the Spanish word for “kneel” and how they are used in sentences:


  • Arrodillarse ante alguien: To kneel before someone.
    • El caballero se arrodilló ante la reina para jurarle lealtad. (The knight knelt before the queen to swear loyalty.)
  • Ponerse de rodillas: To get down on one’s knees.
    • El niño se puso de rodillas para ver mejor el dibujo. (The child got down on his knees to see the drawing better.)
  • Arrodillarse para rezar: To kneel down to pray.
    • Los fieles se arrodillaron para rezar en la iglesia. (The faithful knelt down to pray in the church.)
  • Arrodillarse para pedir perdón: To kneel down to ask for forgiveness.
    • El joven se arrodilló para pedir perdón a su padre. (The young man knelt down to ask his father for forgiveness.)
  • Arrodillarse para recibir una condecoración: To kneel down to receive an award.
    • El soldado se arrodilló para recibir la medalla al valor. (The soldier knelt down to receive the medal of valor.)

Here is an example dialogue that incorporates the Spanish word for “kneel”:

Example Dialogue:

(A mother talking to her child)

Mother: ¿Por qué estás llorando?

Child: Me lastimé la rodilla.

Mother: Ven aquí. Siéntate y muéstrame.

Child: ¡Ay! Me duele.

Mother: No te preocupes, voy a revisarla. ¿Puedes arrodillarte para que pueda verla mejor?

Child: Sí, mamá.

Mother: Ahora, déjame ver. Parece que es solo un rasponazo. Voy a ponerte una curita.

Child: Gracias, mamá.


(A mother talking to her child)

Mother: Why are you crying?

Child: I hurt my knee.

Mother: Come here. Sit down and show me.

Child: Ow! It hurts.

Mother: Don’t worry, I’ll check it. Can you kneel down so I can see it better?

Child: Yes, mom.

Mother: Now, let me see. It looks like just a scrape. I’ll put a band-aid on it.

Child: Thank you, mom.

More Contextual Uses Of The Spanish Word For “Kneel”

Understanding the various contexts in which the Spanish word for “kneel” is used is crucial to mastering the language. Here, we will delve into the formal and informal uses of the word, as well as explore other contexts such as slang, idiomatic expressions, and cultural/historical uses. We will also touch on popular cultural usage, if applicable.

Formal Usage Of Kneel

In formal settings, the Spanish word for “kneel” is often used in religious contexts. In Catholicism, for example, kneeling is a sign of reverence and humility before God. The Spanish word for “kneel” in this context is “arrodillarse”. For instance, “La gente se arrodilló ante la imagen sagrada” (The people knelt before the sacred image).

Informal Usage Of Kneel

Informally, the Spanish word for “kneel” is often used in everyday situations. For example, when proposing to someone, it is common to get down on one knee. In Spanish, this is expressed as “ponerse de rodillas” or “arrodillarse”. Another example is when playing games such as “Simon Says”, where children are often asked to kneel down. In Spanish, the command would be “rodillas en el suelo” (knees on the ground).

Other Contexts

The Spanish word for “kneel” can also be used in slang, idiomatic expressions, and cultural/historical contexts. For instance, in some Latin American countries, the word “rodilla” (knee) is used as slang for money, as in “tengo las rodillas peladas” (I’m broke). In idiomatic expressions, the word for “kneel” can be used to express submission or obedience, such as “ponerse de rodillas ante alguien” (to kneel before someone). Historically, kneeling has been used as a form of punishment or torture in some cultures, and the Spanish word for “kneel” can be found in related historical contexts.

Popular Cultural Usage

One popular cultural usage of the Spanish word for “kneel” is in the lyrics of the song “La Macarena”. The chorus instructs dancers to “dale a tu cuerpo alegría Macarena” (give your body happiness, Macarena) and to “arrodillarse a tu pies” (kneel at your feet) as a form of worship. The song became a worldwide hit in the 1990s and remains a staple at parties and weddings.

Regional Variations Of The Spanish Word For “Kneel”

When it comes to the Spanish language, there are many regional variations that can make it difficult for non-native speakers to keep up. One area that can be particularly tricky is the variety of words used to describe kneeling.

Spanish Word For Kneel In Different Spanish-speaking Countries

While the most common Spanish word for “kneel” is “arrodillarse,” there are several other variations that are used in different Spanish-speaking countries. For example, in Mexico, the word “hincarse” is often used, while in Argentina, “ponerse de rodillas” is a more common phrase.

It’s important to note that while these regional variations exist, they are all understood throughout the Spanish-speaking world. So, no matter which word you use to describe kneeling, you’ll be understood by Spanish speakers from all over.

Regional Pronunciations

In addition to varying words, there are also regional differences in how the Spanish word for “kneel” is pronounced. For example, in Spain, the “ll” sound is pronounced as a “y” sound, so “arrodillarse” would be pronounced “arroyarse.” In Latin America, however, the “ll” sound is pronounced as a “j” sound, so the same word would be pronounced “arrojarse.”

Other variations in pronunciation include differences in emphasis and inflection. For example, in some regions, the emphasis is placed on the first syllable of the word, while in others it’s on the second. These subtle differences can make it difficult for non-native speakers to understand, but they also add to the richness and complexity of the Spanish language.

Other Uses Of The Spanish Word For “Kneel” In Speaking & Writing

As with many words in any language, context is key when it comes to the different uses of the Spanish word for “kneel”. While the most common use of the word is to describe the action of physically kneeling down, there are other uses of the word that are important to understand in order to communicate effectively in Spanish.

Religious Context

In religious contexts, the Spanish word for “kneel” is often used to describe a form of worship or reverence. For example, in the Catholic Church, kneeling is a common posture for prayer and devotion. In this context, the word “kneel” is often used in phrases such as “ponerse de rodillas” (to get down on one’s knees) or “arrodillarse” (to kneel down).

Figurative Use

The word “kneel” can also be used figuratively in Spanish to describe a submission or surrender. For example, the phrase “doblar la rodilla” (to bend the knee) is often used to describe a surrender or submission to authority. Similarly, the phrase “ponerse de rodillas ante alguien” (to kneel before someone) can be used to describe a display of submission or respect.

Distinguishing Between Uses

When using the Spanish word for “kneel”, it is important to consider the context in which it is being used in order to determine the appropriate meaning. If the context is religious or involves prayer, the physical act of kneeling is likely being referred to. If the context is more figurative, such as in a political or social situation, the word may be being used to describe a submission or surrender.

It is also important to pay attention to other words and phrases used in the sentence in order to determine the intended meaning of the word “kneel”. For example, if the phrase “doblar la rodilla” is used in a political context, it is likely being used figuratively to describe a surrender or submission to authority rather than a physical act of kneeling.

Common Words And Phrases Similar To The Spanish Word For “Kneel”

Synonyms And Related Terms

There are several words and phrases in Spanish that are similar to the word “kneel.” These include:

  • Arrodillarse
  • Doblar las rodillas
  • Ponerse de rodillas
  • Hincarse

The most common of these is “arrodillarse,” which is the direct translation of “kneel.” “Doblar las rodillas” and “ponerse de rodillas” are both idiomatic expressions that mean “to get down on one’s knees.” “Hincarse” is a less common synonym that can also mean “to kneel.”

Usage Differences And Similarities

These synonyms are all used in similar contexts to “kneel,” such as during prayer, as a sign of respect, or as a form of punishment. However, some of these phrases may be more commonly used in certain regions or dialects of Spanish.

For example, “arrodillarse” is the most commonly used term throughout the Spanish-speaking world, while “hincarse” is more common in Mexico and parts of Central America. “Doblar las rodillas” and “ponerse de rodillas” are also widely used, but may be considered more formal or polite than the other terms.


The antonyms of these words and phrases are those that describe standing or sitting upright. Some examples include:

  • Ponerse de pie
  • Levantarse
  • Erguirse

“Ponerse de pie” is the direct opposite of “arrodillarse” and means “to stand up.” “Levantarse” is a more general term that means “to get up” or “to rise,” but can also be used as an antonym for “kneel.” “Erguirse” is a less common term that means “to stand upright.”

Mistakes To Avoid When Using The Spanish Word For “Kneel”

When learning a new language, it’s common to make mistakes. Spanish, like any other language, has its own set of unique grammar rules and vocabulary that can be difficult to master. One word that non-native speakers often struggle with is “kneel.” In this section, we’ll discuss some common mistakes made when using the Spanish word for “kneel” and provide tips to avoid them.

Common Mistakes

Here are some common mistakes non-native speakers make when using the Spanish word for “kneel”:

  • Confusing “rodilla” with “rodillo” – “Rodilla” is the correct word for “kneel,” while “rodillo” means “rolling pin.” It’s important to pay attention to the pronunciation and spelling of these words to avoid confusion.
  • Using the wrong verb form – The correct verb form for “kneel” is “arrodillarse.” Non-native speakers often make the mistake of using “rodillarse” or “rodillar,” which are not correct.
  • Forgetting the reflexive pronoun – In Spanish, the verb “arrodillarse” is reflexive, meaning it requires a reflexive pronoun. Non-native speakers often forget to include “se” in the sentence, leading to grammatical errors.

Tips To Avoid Mistakes

To avoid these common mistakes, here are some tips:

  1. Practice pronunciation – Make sure you’re pronouncing “rodilla” and “arrodillarse” correctly. Listen to native speakers and repeat the words until you feel comfortable saying them.
  2. Use the correct verb form – Remember to use “arrodillarse” when talking about “kneeling.”
  3. Include the reflexive pronoun – Don’t forget to include “se” in the sentence when using “arrodillarse.”


In this blog post, we have explored the various ways to say ‘kneel’ in Spanish. We started by discussing the most common translation, ‘arrodillarse,’ which is the standard term used in most Spanish-speaking countries. We also looked at some regional variations such as ‘ponerse de rodillas’ and ‘hincarse.’ Furthermore, we examined the different contexts in which these phrases can be used, such as in religious or romantic situations. Finally, we discussed the importance of understanding these phrases in order to communicate effectively with Spanish speakers.

Encouragement To Practice And Use Kneel In Real-life Conversations

Learning a new language can be challenging, but it can also be incredibly rewarding. By mastering the different ways to say ‘kneel’ in Spanish, you can enhance your communication skills and build stronger relationships with Spanish speakers. We encourage you to practice using these phrases in real-life conversations and to seek out opportunities to immerse yourself in the Spanish language and culture. With dedication and persistence, you can become fluent in Spanish and open up a world of new possibilities. ¡Buena suerte! (Good luck!)

Shawn Manaher

Shawn Manaher is the founder and CEO of The Content Authority and He’s a seasoned innovator, harnessing the power of technology to connect cultures through language. His worse translation though is when he refers to “pancakes” as “flat waffles”.