Tag Archives | Elbows

Yoga Arm Balances

Yesterday morning, I decided to do something a little different from my normal morning routine, which involves spending some time upside down.

I had come across this yoga video of some fairly advanced stuff including a few yoga arm balances. So I popped it in the player and did my best to follow along.

I’d like to think I did fairly well considering I don’t actually do yoga and this was an advanced program. But there was a number of skills I could not do, mostly involving flexibility.

The lotus position, forget it. And doing it in a handstand was way beyond my level.

But I picked up some interesting moves I hadn’t done before. Not to mention the video helped me to identify a few weak points.

Try this one out. Its similar to a frogstand except both your legs are going to be to one side. So bend your elbows, put both legs to the outside of one knee and lift up onto your hands with the legs stacked on top of each other resting on the knee.

From here, drop your head to the ground and press from this side position up into a headstand.

Its just one move that stood out to me. Give it a try and see if you can do it.

The point is that you should look outside your discipline at many things similar but also far different. For hand balancing you’ve got gymnastics, capoeira, yoga, break dancing, parkour and more.

It can help you change it up and look your practice through some different eyes.

Anyone coming from a gymnastics background can learn a lot from the origins of hand balancing. That’s why getting The True Art and Science of Hand Balancing can show you tons of moves you‘ve never even thought of doing.

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And maybe in the future I’ll find some more resources to further help you branch out.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

P.S. Do you have your costume ready for Halloween? Just finished mine and I’m pleased with the results. I’ll try to snap a few pictures tomorrow and post them on the blog. Whether I can manage a handstand in it or not, is debatable

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Handstand Questions Answered

Gonna drop into the mailbag and answer a few questions today.

“Is it possible for a weak old man to develop the strength necessary to do a handstand? (presently outa condition and overweight). when will the dvd be available again?” -Dennis

The Secrets of the Handstand Quickstart Guide has been sold out for a couple weeks. But it will be coming back, better than ever, and soon. Stay tuned for that.

Anyone, no matter their age can get started hand balancing. To be truthful, the normal handstand doesn’t require a whole lot of strength. It’s a matter of using the body in the correct way to support itself.

That being said, if you are really out of shape, handstands may not be the best starting point. Use other easier exercises like regular pushups to build up your strength levels before you begin.

“Heyy! I can do a hand stand but my only problem is I can only stay balanced for a few seconds maybe about five. How could I improve that??” -Shae

Well, Shae just keep practicing. While there are helpful tips to keep you up in the air, nothing takes the place of practice. Get into a good position and work the balance.

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“Hello. I’d like to know how the arms move when doing HSPU’s. I mean do the shoulders stick out to the sides, or do the shoulders stick out in front of the person? Thanks” -Daniel

Where your shoulders and arms point can make a big difference in doing handstand pushups. You can do it either way but one will be harder than the other. I’ll leave it up to you to figure out which one is what.

As far as freestanding handstand pushups you’re going to have to take the elbows in position unless you do a handstand with a large base, that is the arms spread out wide.

That’s it for today.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

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Diane Robinson – Contortionist Extraordinaire

From the November 1950 issue of Acro-Chat.

Diane Robinson Hand Stand

Diane Robinson like many others has spent many happy hours working out with the gang at Santa Monica’s “Muscle Beach.” But her real training came from dancing school acrobatic teachers in Oakland and Hollywood, California.

Diane’s ease of manner, grace of work and charming personality has made her a favorite with western audiences. Many contortionists perform their bending on top of a small platform or pedestal, but Diane goes them one better by performing her difficult bends and balances on top of a large ball.

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Here she is very much at ease in a free elbow stand balance.

 Elbow Stand Balance

In you want to try the contortionism thing then its still a matter of progressing from where you start. Trying to get the little bit more of back bend each time.

I wouldn’t recommend starting off on top of a ball. Just standing on top of a swiss ball proves to much for most people.

As far of the points of the elbows stand, go ahead and give it a try. Simply start from a forearm balance and raise your hands up. With a little practice you can add this trick to your repertoire.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

P.S. There’s a few more pictures of Diane demonstrating the front walkover which I’ll put up next time. Until then be sure to check out the new review on the Hand Balancing Mastery Course if you haven’t already.

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What a broom can teach you about hand balancing

Everyone has done this at one time or another. A broom is a common item but any long straight object will do just fine.

Put one end on your open palm with the other end straight up in the air and keep it there by balancing.

This is not very difficult and let me tell you why. The broom is straight and solid. Your efforts at balancing it from the bottom translate straight up to the top so it is quite easy to keep it in the air.

Of course, this is related to hand balancing. However, there are some big differences.

Your body is not just one straight long object. You have mobile joints at your elbows, shoulders, hips, knees and ankles. And then there’s your spine which has many moving pieces.

This is not an anatomy lesson. My point is that your efforts of balancing on your hands may not directly translate to keeping your feet in the air.

Your target must be keeping your body from wrists to toes unmoving so that you can balance.

Keeping your body tight is the key to holding a quality handstand. Any leak means getting out of proper position and a much tougher time getting back in.

So stay tight, but don’t forget to breathe.

In the beginning all this is not as easy as it appears, especially when you are in the unfamiliar upside down position. But keep practicing.

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When you can keep your body rigid then handstands are a piece of cake.

Sincerely,
Logan Christopher

P.S. For in depth instuctions on how to get into position and hold it check out Professor Paulinetti and Bob Jones’ Book

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Handstand Lead-up Stunts (The Two Arm Elbow Planche)

In Handbalancing Made Easy, Professor E.M. Orlick explains that there are a number of stunts which will  teach you many of the aspects that are needed for a good handstand. Two of these stunts are covered in the downloadable guide. These are the headstand and frogstand. Today I want to talk about one more of the 21 covered in the course.

In his own words these are the benefits on mastering all of these stunts.

The following lead-up stunts constitute stepping stones to perfection. They serve a multiple purpose and are of inestimable value. Taken alone each is a stunt in itself and worth learning even if you had no interest in handbalancing. All of them have something in common to the handstand and thus, pave the way for good handbalancing.

Each accustoms you to the upside-down position of the handstand, each helps to develop the strength, balance and muscular coordination necessary to handbalancing. Many form the very basis of the advanced stunts which will be dealt with later.

Anyone who sincerely desires to become an expert at the art of handbalancing should master each and everyone of these lead-up stunts. Even if you can hold a fairly good handstand now you should practice these stunts, for no matter how good you may be there is always room for improvement.

The Two Arm Elbow Planche.

Two Arm Elbow Planche

In addition to being an excellent lead-up trick the two arm elbow planche plays an important part in advanced handbalancing. Many difficult stunts can be built around it.

To perform the trick kneel on the floor, bring both elbows together and place them in your stomach and turn the palms of the hands facing upwards. Now lean forwards slowly and place the hands flat on the floor with your fingers pointing backwards. Arch your back slowly until your toes leave the floor and you will be doing the two arm elbow planche.

You will find the balance a little difficult at first but just keep on practicing. The stunt can also be performed on the edge of a table or on the end of any ordinary bed.

I have also heard this move called many other things, from an elbow lever to a half-arm planche. The obvious next step, and much more advanced, is to switch to doing this move on a single arm.

Why is this stunt helpful? It trains the balancing aspect on your hands from a low center of gravity. You also have to keep a decent arch and your body tight or else you will touch the ground with more than your hands.

Looking back I realize just how helpful these lead-up stunts are. I was going after a handstand before I could easily hold a headstand. Logically, you should go after the easier stunts first before tackling the more difficult.

The great thing about this course is just about every stunt and move shown leads in to the next one. If you want to get the One Hand Handstand then you have eight different lead-up stunts before you even attempt it.

On that note don’t forget you can get early access to ordering the Hand Balancing Mastery Course by signing up for the VIP List at Hand Balancing VIP List

And you can win yourself a free copy by sending in your success story. Don’t forget to do it soon because the deadline for entries is midnight on Monday, November 19th.

Have fun with this one and until next time…

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

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