Hi everyone 👋
I hope you are well!
After having written an article on the figures of the Street Workout, we will focus today on one of them: the Handstand.
We will see the 3 main aspects that make up the movement in order to obtain a Handstand of the most correct.
On the agenda of this article:
- The positions of the hands
- The best ways to get in and out of this position
- Mistakes to avoid
- Routine Handstand
- Additional progressions
Let's go 🔥
Handstand = Strength and Balance
The Handstand is mainly composed of 3 elements, and the first 2 you will have to focus on are: strength and balance.
You will need a minimum of strength if you want to stand upside down on your hands, also a good amount of balance if you want to be able to stand without any help.
Having a lot of strength or a lot of balance will compensate for a lack in the other element. The third dimension of Handstand is alignment.
Handstand There are 2 types ofHandstand : the Handstand banana with a bent back and the Handstand straight with a straight body.
The banana is the version that is a little easier to achieve and probably the first one you will get.
When doing a straight one, you will have to contract your whole body. This version is safer and based on balance, which makes it less tiring and will allow you to hold it longer. A straight Handstand will teach you the correct body position that you will need to have in many other Street Workout moves, such as the back lever or plank.
While learning the movement, it is important to be aware of keeping your body upright, especially when working against a wall.
Just before getting into the details, you should not neglect the warm-up because the Handstand will put your body, shoulders and especially your wrists to a severe test.
The warm-up of the Handstand
I especially recommend warming up your wrists and shoulders, personally I always do this before every workout.
At the very beginning, you will need a minimum of strength to seriously work on the first main position. The Handstand against a wall is ideal to get stronger and start getting used to having your head down. Your shoulders and wrists will start to get used to it little by little, without the risk of injury.
Strength and balance exercises
To begin to find your balance point and build strength, the Pike position Handstand is ideal. You can progressively raise your feet to increase the difficulty until they are fully raised against a wall.
Another great exercise that I did a lot in my early days is the Frog Stand which will require a little more strength and balance. Tighten your knees against your arms at the beginning to make the exercise easier. Set a goal to last between 10-30 seconds in a row, this will be a good start 💪
To go further in strength and balance. You can perform the Crow Stand where you will put your knees higher and you will keep your arms straight. But be careful, it is already more advanced and it pulls well on the wrists.
Positioning of the hands on the ground
The first thing to consider here is the positioning of your hands. You will want them shoulder-width apart or a little wider. Then, don't squeeze your fingers together, but spread them apart, enough to increase your stability.
Lastly, I recommend bending your fingers before you start like the picture below. Once in balance, you will constantly alternate between pushing on your fingers and releasing the pressure to stay in position.
Jump with your back to the wall to become familiar with the Handstand
You will throw one of your back legs directly on the wall, the second leg will do the same a few moments later. Be careful to leave enough room between your hands and the wall at the beginning, and to measure your jump so that you fall directly on your feet.
The wall is ideal to start gradually to become familiar with this figure of Street Workout.
The Handstand with its back to the wall
Once you are holding upside down, you will immediately want to work in the best position possible. You'll want to squeeze your feet, buttocks and abs as much as you can to keep your body straight and avoid digging into your lower back. Also take care to push your shoulders all the way down, as if you were trying to get them as close to your ears as possible.
Once you have a solid enough position, I recommend working up to holding it a good minute in a rowIf you have trouble, don't force it. Hold for 30 seconds this position will already be very effectiveRepeat this 2 to 3 times.
Here we go 🔥⌛️
Getting off the wall
Two ways to proceed:
- The first is to push yourself off the wall with your foot before your hands take over to keep yourself balanced.
- The second is to lean as little as possible with your foot anduse only your hands to get off the ground. To do this, you're going to want to push hard on your fingers, which will bring you nicely backwards, away from the wall, and bring both feet back on the ground.
The fear of falling
When you start doing Handstand without walls, it is important toeliminate any fears you may have, especially about falling.
That's why you must first learn how to fall without hurting yourself. There are different ways to get out of a Handstand :
If you do it on soft ground, you can pull your head in and roll onto your back and not your neck or you can decide to bridge from your Handstand. This is not necessarily ideal because it is more impressive.
The exit I recommend is to simply rotate the body to one side before falling on your feet.
Tip: Test yourself to see which side you prefer. You will keep this side in your mind when you make the Handstand.
Now that you know how to fall, let's focus on this famous position!
Jumping in Handstand
I always advise starting with your hands on the ground as we saw earlier, rather than projecting upright.
A major step will be learning to jump just enough, you will have to find the right balance point. You will find it as you go along.
As a general rule, I recommend looking a little above the hands rather than trying to pull the head in (which can complicate the balance). Here are the dos and don'ts.
Mistakes to avoid and my advice
- First of all, you should start with your shoulders above your hands and not behind them, so that they are already close to their final position.
- You will also direct the movement with your hips and not your feet. The hips should come above the shoulders before your feet and ideally, it should stay there.
- Speaking of feet, you should try not to squeeze them or at least not too soon. Generally, you'll almost prefer to wait until the leg you're jumping with is in position and balanced before bringing the second one in.
- Lastly, you want to keep your hips parallel to your hands for as long as possible and only twist when you fall.
Now let's see how to hold this position! 🤸♂️
Hold on tightly Handstand
My best advice is really to practice it over and over again every day, if you can.
Repetition is the only way to get it and improve it. I would also advise you to do max attempts quite often, for example once every morning and every night against a wall in your room, try to hold it for as long as possible.
When you're at the point of trying to separate from the wall and stand on your own, you should work on it every day if you can but as part of your workouts, I would incorporate it as a set time instead.
For example, you block out 20 minutes at the beginning of your workouts during which you practice jumping and holding a Handstand. That doesn't mean 20 minutes of non-stop jumping.
In order to hold on, you need to be fresh. So, if you miss 3, 4, 5 times in a row, rest for a little while, just to be ready to go again 💪
Also, you should combine work with a wall in addition to without. For example, you could do 10 min of each, just to get enough jump attempts, but also enough time spent upside down.
We've seen how to fall, but remember that it's a last resort! As long as you're up, you' ll have to fight to stay up!
And here are a few techniques to do so:
First of all, avoid stepping on your hands to avoid falling, it's a bad habit that won't help much in holding a Handstand.
Otherwise, when you fall forward, that is, on your back. The best prevention method you can use is to push hard on your fingers, as we have seen. You can also do a Hollow Back Handstand, but this is much more advanced.
To avoid falling back on your feet in your starting position, the best thing to do is to learn not to push too hard on your fingers and to release the pressure at the right time.
You want to try to keep your weight in the middle, or even a little bit towards the front of your hands and not on your palms. If you are losing your balance, there are still two other ways to stay up by compensating with strength, but again, they are more advanced.
Either you bend your arms and you make a small pump on your hands to go back up, or you keep your arms stretched and you go back up by slowing down the descent in plank. But as I said, it becomes very hard very quickly.
Two additional tips to help you find and keep your balance:
- First, if you have the luxury of having someone to help you, it can be very effective for him or her to reach out on either side of your legs and gently push on the other side to help you find your balance point. This can also help you reduce your fear of falling at first.
- Second, if you find something at about foot level, such as a pull-up bar or a not-so-high ceiling, you can also use it to push against, to find balance before releasing the pressure.
How to improve your mobility?
The head down dog posture is very good to improve your mobility. It can be done against a wall or on the floor. You don't need to keep your legs straight, since it's not the ischios that you want to stretch.
Never dig into your back and gently push yourself out of your comfort zone.
You can also train the Hollow body position, which is what you're looking for in a Handstand, except that you train it on the floor and on your back.
Again, you stick your lower back to the floor, contract your abs, buttocks, legs and stretch your arms behind you. It is a very good exercise of gainage, but be very careful not to dig your back.
Here is the expected position:
There are still several important points about the right Handstand . For example, having straight legs is good, but as you can see, it is not always enough.
You may have noticed, but in order to have a straight back, you will also have to voluntarily pull in your stomach. More specifically, you will have to contract your transverse abdominis.
Handstand on parallettes
Another type of Handstand that I will quickly address and that will concern you even more if you do Street Workout, is the one on parallel bars.
In my opinion, it is easier to achieve than on the ground because of the hand position which will allow you to use even more force to counterbalance backwards, but also forwards.
When placing your hands on the bars, you don't want to break your wrists in either direction, but rather look to put the bar a little diagonally in your palm, so as to maximize contact with your hand and therefore stability.
To conclude this article, let's look at some possible progressions.
First, you can play with your hand positioning, such as practicing balances with wide or tight grips for different sensations.
You can turn to the outside for more difficulty, but also an easier transition to other moves like planks or semi planks, for example.
This is now the end of this article, I hope you enjoyed it 😃
To go further and improve your skills at Handstand, you will find everything on my store 🔥
To discover the video on this subject: right here!
See you soon,