Tag Archives | Fingertips

Straddle Press Handstand Drill #5

I’ve been working on various drills lately in order to achieve the straddle press to handstand and one of them is drill #5 explained in this video.

Walking and Jumping On Your HandsWalking and Jumping On Your Hands on Amazon

I start with the straddle position against the ground, which shares similarities with a regular straddle press, without being upside down. I put my back against a pillar to prevent leaning back in order to increase dynamic flexibility, which is the main goal of this drill. From there, just put your fingertips on the ground between thighs and lift your legs above the ground.

You may get some cramps in this position initially, but this move will help you increase that strength-dynamic flexibility which is the main thing you’ll need to perform the press handstand.

As you gradually increase your strength and flexibility, eventually you’ll be able to lift your legs with your hands between your feet and then soon you’ll be able to achieve that press handstand. You can do this drill for reps or time, whichever suits you the best. The results will be the same.

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Fingertip Planche

This came into today and I thought it was worth sharing.

Hey logan i was just able to check out the amazing feat video and i have to say thanks for sharing that with all of us, i love how the monks train and the one and two finger zen are always legendary. I wanted to tell you to keep up all your hard work man! yourself and jim are great motivators and i loved the teleseminar you guys posted out awhile back. I can not do a one handed handstand pushup yet, but ive always had strong fingers and i recently not too long ago was able to do (Not Perfect Form) but a three finger planche and since i read the Feats message i wanted to share the picture with you i hope you receive it, its not the best at all man but im training and having fun hoping to promote others to exercise and keep healthy. Im alittle late on the video since you sended it but i just got to the message now. I always try my best to catch any new information that you give out.

Never stop training,
Alejandro

Fingertip Planche

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

Today’s post will answer another question from the many I regularly receive.

“Hey I am Stefan I am now starting out with doing the handstand, but my question is what muscles are involved in doing the handstand and what exercises can I do to improve it?”

Let’s start with the first question, what muscles are involved in the handstand? And the answer is all of them.

When you’re starting out you need to be able to keep your body tight if you want to have any chance of staying upside down. This means every muscle must be engaged from the tips of your fingertips down to your toes.

This doesn’t mean you flex everything as hard as possible but you must stay tight. As you advance you’ll learn how to use only as much tension as is needed and no more. This allows you to go for longer periods. But to start out with squeeze all those muscles, arms, back, abs, legs and even the toes.

Learn How to Back Flip in 31 Days
Learn How to Back Flip in 31 Days on Amazon

Now onto the second question. There is a rule of thumb in training. In order to get good at something you must do that thing. So if you want to get good at handstands you must do a lot of handstands. There is no way around this.

This is true but in some cases you’re better off working on easier skills. Do skills that are easier then the handstand itself that build up the same abilities that the handstand needs. For the handstand these include a wall handstand, frogstand, forearm stand, and headstand. All the details and proper progression for this is laid out in the Secrets of the Handstand Quickstart DVD.

Work on easier skills that lead up to the harder ones. For anything else in hand balancing check out the Hand Balancing Mastery Course.

As an analogy, if you wanted to learn the piano you wouldn’t start out with the Rach 3 but instead focus on scales and simple songs first. This concept holds true for all skills you desire to build.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

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More Questions Answered

I figured I’d dive into the email file and answer a few questions today.

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

“I’ve been working on the one armed handstand pushup and have gotten one armed handstand planks. Do you have any tips for faster progression with the one armed handstand pushup. I’m at partial ROM at the moment.”
Jesse

First off congratulations Jesse, you are much further along then most everyone, including myself.

I can’t give you my personal experience as I haven’t got to that point yet. But I can offer what others have said will work.

The basics of progressing from two hands to one would be to use your off hand less and less. You can do this by raising it on an object or just using less pressure (like going on to the fingertips. This way your ‘working’ arm must do more work.

For more on the one hand handstand pushup I recommend you check out the book Convict Conditioning by a man who was able to work up to this awesome move. You can read my full Convict Conditioning review here.

“I only started hand balancing because I thought it will make me taller??? I’m 16 and 5’9 will I be 6 ft if I do hand balancing???”
Naqib

This is the first time I got this question. And its interesting. Does hand balancing make you taller? Probably not. Hand balancing and inversion can offer many benefits and keep the spine straight and aligned. This probably won’t make you taller but it certainly won’t make you shorter. Considering that you’re young its likely that you’ll still keep growing.

“I have been practicing handstands for 3 years. I probably practiced it the wrong way because I can barely hold it for 5 seconds. What can I do to extend the life of my handstands?”
Brian

Don’t mean to be harsh but yes you must be doing something wrong. It took me about a year to work up to thirty seconds and I think that was too long!

You must be neglecting something basic like keeping the body tight. Without seeing you do a handstand I can’t advise you better than that. No matter what it is though, I encourage you to revisit the lead-up stunts as described in the Secrets of the Handstand Quick Start Guide.

Sir I am practicing yoga since 1 & 1/2 years. I can do difficult postures excluding this handstand. In yoga all boys generally perform curved Handstand instead of straight Handstand. Sir I have one question, What is the role of our back while performing handstand? Is it responsible for balancing Or Handstand is only depends on power in our hands? Also I am 20 year old. I listened that age is one of the barrier in practicing the handstand. Is it true? If possible Please tell me sir, at what age you have started the Handstand?
Aniruddha

Whether you have a straight or curved handstand the back is not involved in the balance. IT is used to keep you stable, but you do not arch more or less in order to stay balanced. Balancing comes from the hands and also the shoulders. (For beginners I recommend keeping the shoulders immobile and focusing on the hands.)

As for age there’s a few things going on. Kids are better off at gaining skills. They have more myelin which allows them to gain skills quickly. And by starting early you have more time to build your skill. (Full details on this can be found on the Skill and How to Build It CD found in the Hand Balancing Mastery Course.)

They also weigh less and are closer to the ground. So yes, younger people are much better off at hand balancing. But age is no barrier. You can become good, even great, if you’re dedicated.

That’s enough questions for today. Pay attention to the next post for something special. Until then…

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

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Over and Underbalancing in a Handstand

“Hey Logan, just a short question on the handstand, how do you get control when you go towards under balancing ( I think…I’m new to all this, hehe)? Because when I over balance I just push the floor with my fingers, but when I under balance I just have no idea what to do.”

Thanks,
Sebastien V-G

“Hey Logan, I felt like trying a handstand today, and I tried it. I think I did pretty good, but before I can even hold it for more than a few seconds, I lose my balance and fall forwards. I have read most of the articles on this website, and I have tried the handstand again, but I still keep falling forward. Any Help?”
-Andrew

Thanks for the questions Sebastien and Andrew. They are common ones and are really all about what it takes to stay in the handstand.

To begin with if you are overbalancing you will press your fingertips into the floor. If you are underbalancing you can’t really press your palm into the floor, but you’ll want to raise your fingers up.

This old article has more details on the science of balancing.

There are also other methods of saving your balance whether its over or under. Read this article on shoulder weaving. As Bob Jones recommends this is not for beginners.

Learning this control whether by action of the hands or shoulders takes lots of practice. It’s a fine skill and will take time to develop or else everyone would be able to hold a handstand with ease.

That’s why I developed my Secrets of the Handstand Quick Start DVD. Using lead-up stunts will better help you to develop that balancing skill. And this review from Julia shows you why.

“Hi Logan, I appreciate your interest and support.  You probably have the best support system I’ve seen for people using your products.

Tumbling Illustrated
Tumbling Illustrated on Amazon

“The DVD is great, and I think it’s a valuable tool for anybody who wants to have a strong and stable handstand.  I can really see the value of the lead-up stunts, and why a freestanding handstand is a bad idea until I get my frogstand under control.”

Thanks a lot!
-Julia

If you can’t control you handstand for more than a few seconds check out the Secrets of the Handstand Quick Start DVD.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

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Planche and Hand Position

A few comments were raised about the hand position in Rafael Guerrero’s planche in a previous post.

Why was he up on the fingertips? Is this necessary to do a planche in good form?

Unless you have hyper-flexible wrists you won’t be able to do a planche with the fingers pointing forwards and flat on the ground. Most people turn their wrists out to the sides to alleviate this sort of strain or come up on the fingers.

But there are other ways to do a planche with the hands not taking as much stress as these other pictures by Rafael show. You can do it on some sort of parallel bars.

Planche on Bars
Or completely on the fingertips.

Top Planche on Fingertips
Even in a hand-to-hand balance.

Hand Balancing Made EasyHandBalancingMadeEasy_on_Amazon

Top Planche in High Hand to Hand Balance
But if you do have the wrist flexibility you can do it on flat ground with the palms flat on the ground and facing forward. In the True Art and Science of Hand Balancing the chapter on planches showcases W.H. Mering doing just that.

And if you’re seeking to build incredible strength like these planches show I have an important announcement later this week. Stay tuned!

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

A few comments were raised about the hand position in Rafael Guerrero’s planche in a previous post. (If you missed that you can find it at https://lostartofhandbalancing.com/blog/the-true-planche/.)

Why was he up on the fingertips? Is this necessary to do a planche in good form?

Unless you have hyper-flexible wrists you won’t be able to do a planche with the fingers pointing forwards and flat on the ground. Most people turn their wrists out to the sides to alleviate this sort of strain or come up on the fingers.

But there are other ways to do a planche with the hands not taking as much stress as these other pictures by Rafael show. You can do it on some sort of parallel bars.

Or completely on the fingertips.

Even in a hand-to-hand balance.

But if you do have the wrist flexibility you can do it on flat ground with the palms flat on the ground and facing forward. In the True Art and Science of Hand Balancing the chapter on planches showcases W.H. Mering doing just that. Check out the book for more.

If you’re seeking to build incredible strength like these planches show I have an important announcement later this week. Stay tuned!

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

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Basic Handstand Help

I’ve received quite a few questions lately, so today I’m going to dive into the proverbially mail bag. Remember you can submit your hand balancing questions here.

Here’s a few different questions from Cheryl.

“Which part of my body to focus for balancing when i hold a handstand. Do I use my backbend to balance? Do I inner or outer rotate my thighs to balance? Do I grip my fingers to balance? thank you very much.”

“How to lift to handstand as each time i kick up I will either past centre or cant reach the centre. Which part of my body should I engage and how? Thank you very much.”

These are good questions Cheryl and they actually overlap a bit.

You want your entire body to stay tight, from you toes through your back all the way to your fingers. At no point (except when doing certain tricks) should you be balancing by using your legs or back.

The balance should be maintained with pressure of the fingertips. You can maintain balance with your arms and shoulders but for a beginner you should get these just as locked out as the rest of the body and use only the fingers.

The kick-up is a skill in and of itself that must be specifically practiced like the handstand. Improve your kick-up and getting into the handstand becomes easy.

It’s really a matter of kicking up with the same amount of force each time so that you hit the sweet spot, not overbalancing, not underbalancing.

And like stated earlier when you are in position your whole body engages.

These are the basics of the handstand. Get them down and you’ll be holding handstands effortlessly.

Trampoline Handbook
Trampoline Handbook on Amazon

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

P.S. If you want more help on how to do maintain the proper position, how to train the kick-up and extra exercises check out The Secrets of the Handstand Quickstart Guide.

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Handstands and Hand/Grip Positions

First off I want to remind you that the New Year’s Sale is still going. Check Hand Balancing New Year’s Sale to see how you can save 20.08% off of everything. It ends Saturday so if you’re putting it off you better do it now before you forget.For today I’ll dig into the question bag and answer another one.

When I think of how handstands are done with flat palms, I think of how pushups are also done with flat palms. Similarly, both have been done on a bar (pronated grip) or on a set of parallel bars (neutral grip). I have seen variant pushups done with a reversed grip (supinated) and indeed, I think this is the position people take for doing planches. There are also pushups done on fists, on the back of the hand instead of the palm (wrists flexed instead of extended as usual) and on fingertips. While I did hear of some shaolin master doing a supported handstand (with wall) on two fingers, I have never seen these variations addressed in any guides. Are you familiar with anything like that, attempted any of the difficult variations, or have ideas about them?
-Tyciol

This is more than one question so I will break it apart.

Handstands can be done with a variety of grips. Of course you have the standard extended wrist position. But every other way you can move your hands is a way you can do handstands.

Parallel bars do add extra dimensions, and having something to grip can help you be stronger, but similar positions can be taken on the floor if you make your hands into fist.

Hand Balancing Made EasyHandBalancingMadeEasy_on_Amazon

The supinated grip, where your fingers are pointed back the opposite way of normal, makes a handstand much harder to do. Planches could be done like this, but more often you just turn them slightly out from the normal straightforward location.

Fingertip handstands is a big subject that I will cover in some more detail soon.

As far as do any of the books cover training for this stuff, the answer is absolutely.

In Hand Balancing Made Easy, Professor Orlick covers all of the various hand positions you can do in a handstand. In total I counted 35 exercises covering different positions for the fingers and hands.

When you master all these you can balance from just about any position. If you can do a normal handstand try turning your hands. Just a few attempts at doing a handstand with your hands backwards and you will understand the benefits. Great for flexibility too.

You can get this book alone at  or as part of the Hand Balancing Mastery Course.And in The True Art and Science of Hand Balancing, Bob Jones brings you through the progressions he used to master his famous Thumb Stand.But don’t order any of these from the page itself. Get your discount at the Hand Balancing New Year’s Sale

. The sale ends on Saturday.Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

P.S. I dug up and old picture I had forgotten about of an interesting feat my friend and I performed. You’ll get to see it next time.

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