Getting into a handstand is relatively simple, you just plant your hand a kick up, basically.
The better posture you have in your handstand, the easier it will be. The better technique and form you have, the less effort it will take to stay stable.
When you are doing a handstand the aim is to stay up as long as possible, or for a set time, or so that you can transition into other positions. To get to this level, you need to know what to do so that you can stay (hand) standing.
You’ve probably seen someone who can handstand. They’re all bent over almost kicking themselves in the head, their legs are waving about with a mind of their own and their back has a really awkward looking bend in it.
If you have ever seen a gymnast or an acrobat handstand, it is a totally different story. Their handstands are tall and straight. They are still and just seem to stand there without any stress or struggle, as if they were weightless.
Handstand technique is all about getting as straight and pointy as possible. You should be stretching high off the ground, still and strong.
On this page I am going to walk you through a few tips and techniques to take your handstand from wonky mess to natural architecture.
Handstand Technique Tips
We'll Start At The Top . . .
Tip 1 - Toes Pointed
Pointing your toes helps to tighten up your legs and keep them straight.
It is one simple change that could easily transform your hold time!
Tip 2 - Legs Straight
If your legs are bent and leaning out at awkward angles they will make balancing much harder.
Keep them straight and together, stacked directly above your hands.
Tip 3 - Pelvic Tilt
The pelvic tilt refers to a slight tilt in your pelvis, specifically a posterior tilt where you almost have your hips turned under your core as opposed to an anterior tilt where your bum sticks out
Tip 4 - Trunk Hollow
The hollow body position is used regularly in Handstands to help maintain balance without bending your legs, hips, arms or anything else.
To actually get Straight, your body will feel like it is slightly bent in that hollow body position, and it will be very useful later on with Handstand push ups and presses.
Tip 5 - Core Pulled In
When you banana in your handstand your lower back tightens and your core stretches out.
Ideally you want to do the opposite, tightening your core and pulling it in to help stabilize the hips and legs keeping them vertical instead of bending over
Tip 6 - Head Tight
Keep your head tight into your shoulders, don't try too look out in front of you, instead look right down between your hands.
Tip 7 - Extended Shoulders
Stretch high off the ground so your shoulders are tucked right in to your ears.
Tip 8 - Open Shoulders
A lot of Handstands you see have very tight shoulders with bent up backs. It is the equivalent of trying to stand up with your hips at 90 degrees.
Tip 9 - Straight Arms
If your stand with your legs bent, your legs will quickly start aching. If your arms are bent you are taking your weight on your arms.
If you straighten your arms you stop loading them, remember a handstand is a stability exercise not strength.
Tip 10 - Narrow Hands
Spreading your hands wide in a handstand is going to make it more difficult. Instead keep your hands narrow directly under your shoulders, and you will find you are instantly more stable.
Standing on your hands is a lot like standing on your legs. If you stand up nice and straight it will be effortless and comfortable.
If you bend over or twist around it become significantly harder.
Exactly the same happens when you are doing a handstand. A tall straight handstand is a lot easier than a bendy, wonky handstand.
Don't make it harder for yourself!
Check out the full list of progressions and supplementary exercises here . . .
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