Tag Archives | cartwheel

Do you Have Sensitive Hands?

Oddly enough this is an actual question that I’m asking you.

Our hands are incredible tools. According to a book on hand dynamics, it takes a third of our motor brain to control the hands. And by the fact alone, we are able to manipulate tools and thus build an advanced civilization unlike any other animal.

When you think about it, our hands are very amazing instruments. They have so many dynamic ranges of movement they can achieve, that its mind boggling. They can create art, play musical instruments, hold large weights, massage another person, and much more.

Hand balancing doesn’t just take strength. That’s an obvious thing to anyone who has ever tried a handstand.

In order to balance you need sensitivity. Being able to feel minor movements in your body and weight distribution and correct them by manipulating your fingers and wrists.

Let me leave you with a final thought.

Ultimate Guide to Handstand Pushups
Ultimate Guide to Handstand Pushups on Amazon

Sometimes you need to concentrate on the big picture. Other times you need to look at the very small details.

The next time you are inverted, give some added thought to the slightest movements in your hands. It might help you out.

Stay Inverted!
-Jonathan Magno

PS If you want guided path on your hand balance journey, check out our Handstand Mastery Course.

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Training Differently in Your Routines

Last week I posted about adding weights to your hand balance training. Its a great way to build up the necessary muscles and stimulate the right activation. But, what do you do if you keep training in the same manner but reach a standstill. I can get into processes like autoregulation, but I’m going to make this simple and say just change things up!

There was a time when I would spend about 30 min 5-6 days a week on my hand balancing. Not including the periodic times during the day.

Luckily, I have a nice open floor to train. Although working on the freestanding handstand is great, constantly working on your bailout isn’t. In other words it doesn’t help if you cant keep the hold.

I could have probably tried to power through it. If you quit every time something gets difficult you won’t ever achieve anything great. But I’m more a technical guy than power.

So I decided to test and change things up. I tried variations off the fall, different surfaces, and even stalling from cartwheels.

This creates the dual effect of shocking your body and refreshing your mind. If you ever feel tired and stuck a small or even big change-up is what you may need.

As long as you stay consistent you will get better. All you might need is a little alteration.

There is so much variety in hand balancing, if you stay creative, you’ll never get bored.

How to do the One Hand Handstand by Professor Orlick
ow to do the One Hand Handstand on Amazon

If you need some help in getting started, why not check out our Handstand Mastery Course.

Stay Inverted!
-Jonathan Magno


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How to Land Safely From the Parallettes Handstand

The first part of the video from GMB covers how to get out of bent arm stand, but for purpose of this post we’ll focus on the second part which teaches us how to bail out from a handstand on parallettes. The technique used for both is pretty similar anyway – a cartwheel, but with a twist.

Instead of going up and over, this technique relies on:

  • Pushing, twisting and going out at an angle
  • Keeping your arms straight
  • Gradual practice of kicking up and going over

For this and other exercises which can be done with or without parallettes, make sure to check out Gold Medal Bodies Parallettes Training program.


The True Art and Science of Hand Balancing
The True Art and Science of Hand Balancing on Amazon
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November Gymnastic Progress

I put together a short video showing some on the recent progress I’ve made in gymnastics. There’s plenty of other things but I don’t get everything on film.

The first move shown here is a back lever on the rings. This is a strength movement that requires whole body tightness and coordination. You’ll noticed I’m straddling the legs which lessens the leverage slightly.

Just lowering into a horizontal position takes skill, especially being able to know when you’re parallel to the ground. It’s helpful to have someone tell you when you’re there.

As in the case with all these moves I had better attempts but they weren’t always caught on film.

The next move is an aerial. This is like a cartwheel done without the use of the arms. I still figured I was weeks or even months off from being able to do these but all of a sudden I was successful.

This move tends to be much easier for women due to hip flexibility. What I may lack in there I try to make up for in power. The landing was not graceful but I have since duplicated the move gradually making more improvement.

The True Art and Science of Hand Balancing
The True Art and Science of Hand Balancing on Amazon

The third is a goal I set just because I thought it would be fun. My goal is 10 backflips in a row. In the video I do seven. Since then I have hit nine.

The difficult part about this is two-fold. One, I get dizzy and my take-off becomes less vertical giving me less space to flip. Secondly, it’s tiring to do such an explosive move over and over.

Hope you enjoyed the video. With my new gym I have some exciting projects in store. Stay tuned.

Good Luck and Good Gymnastics,
Logan Christopher

P.S. Nothing takes the place of practice but learning is a way to start and build the foundation. To do many of the moves I recommend Tumbling Illustrated. You’ll learn tons of tumbling moves whether you’re beginner or advanced.

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Second Day at Gymnastics

Yesterday was my second day back at gymnastics.

The True Art and Science of Hand Balancing
The True Art and Science of Hand Balancing on Amazon

I have to admit it’s a lot of fun. Join the class and do a series of drills across the floors. Different kinds of cartwheels. Handstands. Handstand roll out. Handstand rollout to standing. And so on.

The different people there have different strengths and weaknesses in these drills. Some are easy. Some are not, but you try anyway, and even if you fail in many cases you are getting better.

After the various warmup drills we were free to work on what we wanted to.

I didn’t do any back handsprings the previous time so I figured that was a good place to start. It’s nice to come back to gymnastics rather than starting from scratch. Much easier this time around.

A few preliminary drills, a spot on one back handspring and then I was doing them by myself. Couldn’t quite get the ideal form I was trying for but I was getting back to my feet. Will have to work on those more for sure.


Back to Back Flips

On to back flips. Although it wasn’t easy last time getting back into the motion, I had it down. Right away on the trampoline. Once again a few preliminary drills and I was ready to go.

This is why training in a gymnastics center is so great. One of the drills involved stacking a whole bunch of pads, including a wedge shaped pad at the top. This was close to shoulder height. The objective was to jump up and back. As soon as you touched the pads, or even before, you would tuck and roll back (the wedge helping you to do so). This allows you to work the jump and tuck while eliminating the entire second half of the move.

Wish I had taken a picture. Where else are you going to be able to do this?

I get a spot on my first real back tuck. It’s done off of raised mats onto a pad. Success. I find often times a single spot is all that is needed, not so much to help in the move, but to calm your mind, and allow you to do it without fear. After that you’re good to go. Just replicate the same action.

Gradually I lowered the mats until it was even. Then I did away with the mats and pads altogether and did a back flip on the floor. Back in action.

Seeing as I easily did these before I knew it wouldn’t be much trouble. Just had to get back into it step by step as I describe in this article on back flips. This time the steps were a lot quicker then when I first learned.

In a few sessions I’ll have all my skills back (and even be better in some ways.) I look forward to the new skills I’ll be learning how to do and sharing that all with you.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

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