Tag Archives | Headstand

More Handstand Q&A

Gonna dip into the mailbag today and answer a couple questions.

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I had a question that relate to both my bridging, and hand balancing. When I do either, the blood rushes to my head very soon, not letting me hold either very long. Is this normal? Will it go away after more time? Are there any special ways to get around this? I would like to be able to work on both more than I am able to now because of that. Thank you for you great websites and emails!
Thank you,
Justin

That’s just a sign of gravity doing its job. The human body is not normally use to being upside down so when you start out it can cause you to feel like your head is about to explode.

I would guess that this happens to most people in one degree or another. And it will get better with time just as you become accustom to the position.

In addition, here’s two things to try out. Holding your breath compounds this problem. Make sure you are breathing easily while you bridge or do handstands. It can be tough in the beginning but you need to breathe for best results.

Second you can do an exercise specifically to get yourself familiar with being upside down. Just go up into a headstand (against a wall or not) and hold for a long time. With practice you’ll be able to do this for minutes at a time. And then you’ll be able to deal with blood rushing to your head.

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Handstands are really frustrating to me.  For a while now I’ve been having consistent 3 sec handstands and it hasn’t been improving. I’m also a bboy and my planches are better than my handstands, I can hold a planche-ish thing with my body horizontal and my back bent with my legs slightly at an angle. Kinda like this \_.   Any tips?
Nate

I think the fact that you are strong from break dancing may actually be holding you back on the handstand. The handstand is really a balanced position. You don’t want to have to rely on your strength to hold you there, unlike the planche.

Professor Orlick use to say that it was easier to teach a little kid the handstand than a strong weightlifter because the kid would have to find the balance, while the weightlifter would try to use his strength. If you want to hear more from Prof. Orlick check out the Hand Balancing Mastery Course.

Its hard to say without some more details but give either of these techniques a try. If you are underbalancing, going toward that planche, push back upwards into the handstand. If you find yourself overbalancing correct yourself and get back to neutral.

But the main thing is to just keep working on it. Set a goal to hit 5 seconds and work on that. Really get a feel for the position. In time it will come.

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

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

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Straightening Handstand, Wrist Strength & More

Diving into a few questions and comments today.

“In the hand stand, and especially in the bridge, the main persisting difficulty is an inherent wrist weakness. In fact I observe steady improvement in back and shoulder flexibility, but the wrist is always setting me back!”
Joseph

I know your pain Joseph, having my own share of wrist problems. But I’ve come a long way in part thanks to handstands.

Here’s a few things you can try out. Always stretch before hand balancing or bridging. Just open the wrist back as far as it will go. And afterwards its great to work it the other direction too.

Try working some of the positions of the fists as well. This is known to help strengthen the wrists.

Of course there is much else to do, including many mobility drills for the hands and fingers. Since this is a problem for many people I’ll be covering it in more detail in the future. But for now I hope that helps.

Onto another comment.

“I got it! Thanks a bunch. I’m pleased with the quality of the material and your service.

“The handstand is really one of the most difficult skill I’m trying to learn, I’m almost there. Been practising since august but I was doing it wrongly by starting to do the handstands and not the build up moves! now I know what I know I’m doing wrong.

“Unfortunately my online friend who is into handbalancing didn’t tell me about the build up moves so I ended up wasting a lot of time practising doing handstands immediately. And most of the resources over the internet failed to teach this important aspect in learning this skill. Out of desperation I even attended a gymnastics class once. After many months of practice (4months) out of 10 attempts 1 will get thru and I would consider that a lucky day if I could hold it for 3seconds! It got so frustrating that I was ready to give up.

“I’m not back to ground zero but I could feel its just a matter of time in learning this. I’ve already mastered the frogstand, headstand and now been practising the kick up. Next would be the forearm stand.

“Here in the philippines, there isn’t much interest in handbalancing. I could only see some B-boys doing a walking handstands but doing static holds? I’ve never seen one. Though when I saw the press to handstand I was blown away by some guy at the gymnastics class.

“Ok got to read the books and dvd! I can’t wait till I can master the handstand! Once I could balance for 30 seconds then on to the advance course.

“Handbalancing is truly a lost art. It’s great that you that you decided to open this resource site.”

Regards,
Gerald

Thanks for sending in the report Gerald. You are too right. Learning the handstand can be frustrating, especially if you take the long slow road of going right to it.

That’s why I created the Secrets of the Handstand Quickstart Guide to give you the lead-up stunts you mentioned and plan to attack the handstand in an easier way.

Once you have that its just a matter of time and practice. You’ll be holding a handstand for 30 seconds in no time.

“How do you correct the arch of the back in a handstand?”
Martha

Let me start off by saying that arching in a handstand is not wrong to do as many people believe. But if you want to straighten out here’s what to do.

Go back to the wall.

Walls are flat so kick up into a handstand and straighten out to the point where all the points on your body are in contact with it.

Of course, you’ll also bring your head down in between your arms and this alone will help to eliminate the arch.

But don’t expect this to go away overnight, and especially be able to balance in the position. You’ll have to work at it to re-configure the body to do as you please since an arched handstand is not only easier but more natural.

That’s it for today. Going to have some new stuff for you this week so stay tuned.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

P.S. Frustrated with the difficulty of the handstand? Don’t know the best place to begin? Find the proper path with the Secrets of the Handstand Quickstart Guide

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

Trampoline Handbook
Trampoline Handbook on Amazon

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.

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 Pushups and Handstand Hand Positions

Got two more handstand questions I’ll dig into today. I have to admit the quality of the questions has stepped up recently at least for the most part. Submit yours at https://lostartofhandbalancing.com/question.html.Here we go. The first one is from Ari.

“OK, Logan, I can balance on my hands, and I have the strength to do handstand pushups, but maintaining balance in an HSPU seems almost impossible. As I lower from the handstand my weight always starts to move to the ventral (stomach) side and unless I bend my legs at the knees so my calves counterbalance the weight, I lose my handstand. How do you maintain a straight bodywhile doing a handstand pushup?”

The first step is to make sure you have the strength to perform the move. When most people do handstand pushups against the wall it’s in an alignment that makes the pushup easier than the form you have to take for a free standing handstand pushup. This is a big topic in and of itself that I’ll have to dig into another time.

The important thing is to have an excess of strength. It’s not good to be burned out after two attempts, since you need to ‘practice’ the move. Onto the balancing.

It is going to be slightly different depending on how straight or arched you are. The thing is that your body will be at an angle and not perfectly vertical from the ground. When your head touches the ground it should be in a triangle formation with the hands. Like the headstand except you don’t rest on the head.

Because of this the upper body and lower body are on different sides of your center of gravity. As if you were lowering down toward the planche.

The most important thing you have to do in order to keep the balance and not fall toward the feet is keeping yourself toward overbalancing. The pressure must be toward your fingers at all times. If you go toward your palms you’ll lose it.

Of course the body has to be kept real tight at the same time. But keep the weight toward your fingers and you’ll be able to stay balanced while doing the pushups.

And here’s one from Ron.

“I’ve been doing handstand training for the past 4 months. For the purpose of experimentation, what are the effects of different hand positioning? In other words, if you spread your hands wider apart, does that provide any benefits, as opposed to keeping the hands at shoulder width?”

Here’s the words of Professor Orlick, from the beginning of chapter 11 in Hand Balancing Made Easy.

There is a two-fold purpose for learning these (that is handstands with different hand and arm positions). The first is for the stunts themselves, they look good, impress your audiences and give you personal satisfaction.

The second is for excellent balance they develop. When you vary the position of the hands you are forced to balance less and less with the fingers and hands themselves and more and more with the body as a unified whole. This may not be clear to you right here but after you learn a few of the stunts which are described you will understand exactly what is meant.

He then goes on to list 14 handstand exercises with different hand and arm position and even more in the next chapter. For details on the exact ones check out Handbalancing Made Easy.

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

But that explains it well enough. Changing your arm position will work your balance to a higher degree. These variations are good to throw into the mix from time to time.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

P.S. Just to let you know there’s going to be changes to a few of the products next week.

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Increase your Hand Balancing Abilities

Got a question from Patrick. “I am a beginner at hand balancing. How can I find exercises and stretching drills thats will increase my abilities”

C’mon people. This is a call to all who submit questions. Be more specific. I can provide better answer when I know what you want. In fact the more detailed the better.But I will take a blind shot at this question.

To increase your abilities you need to work on the specific abilities themselves. I’m going to assume that you’re talking about your hand balancing abilities.

Depending on what you are specifically having trouble with this could mean any number of things.

If your having problems with balancing than I would recommend even easier skills than the handstand itself. Skills like the frogstand, headstand and forearm stand. Here’s the easiest way to learn how to do the handstand.

If you need strength I would recommend holding handstands against the wall and doing handstand pushups.

Trampoline Handbook
Trampoline Handbook on Amazon

For flexibility, lets say in the shoulder region, you can do many drills. In a handstand against the wall you can bring your chest outward thus working the shoulder flexibility. That’s just one example of many. The gymnastic bridge also works wonders and for more than just the shoulders.

The concepts are universally applied to almost any exercise question. If you can analyze where you are at and where you want to be than break that down into things to work on you can attain any goal.

It’s a useful skill to have. Breaking down the seemingly complex into simple steps to follow.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

P.S. Now if you want the whole hand balancing plan laid out for you than I recommend you check this one out – Hand Balancing Mastery Course.

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Frog Stand

The frog stand makes it easier to learn the handstand by training your hand balancing skills in an easier manner.

[youtube:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vp86vFUlV84]

Trampoline Handbook
Trampoline Handbook on Amazon

They call it hand balancing for a reason after all. The frogstand lowers your center of gravity and makes this learning the skills of manipulating your balance with your hands easier.

If you can’t hold the frog stand for at least a minute you have no reason to go after a free standing handstand. That’s my stance and I’m sticking to it.

But it’s not the only move. In fact there’s four. Master these and the handstand becomes much easier to learn.

You want to know what the four are?

Okay, it’s the frogstand, headstand, forearm stand, and handstand against the wall. But make sure you do them right.

The Secrets of the Handstand Quick Start DVD covers all four lead-up stunts and much more.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

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Yoga Headstands

Yoga headstands, known as Sirshasana, are different than the standard gymnastic headstand. Instead of resting your palms flat on the ground you interlock your fingers and place them behind your head.

Trampoline Handbook
Trampoline Handbook on Amazon

[youtube:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5rh-lIyJgqk]

The headstand is a great stunt. Very much underrated. Here is a more difficult variation of the headstand. In fact this would be an excellent exercise to move you forward to holding headstand with no hands at all.

I would recommend you start off this move against a wall as your base of support is quite a bit smaller than the regular headstand.

Kicking up can be tricky too. Instead of kicking up you may want to raise your legs from the floor at the same time. Good ab move too.

This is just one clip from the Handstand Quick-start Guide. I’ll be putting more video up as development continues.

As this is the first informative video, please let me know what you think.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

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Leading up to any Handstand Stunt

Seemed to have raised some interest with my last email. So I’ve decided to go into a little more depth on the subject.

To sum up what I said last time: The best way to learn the handstand, one hand handstand, or any stunt is not to do the move itself, in the beginning, but work on lead-up stunts.

Obviously at a certain point you will need to work on the skill itself in order to master it but you shouldn’t start there.

If you look at a weightlifting move like the deadlift, let’s say you have a goal to lift 500 lbs. You wouldn’t start out trying to lift this weight because most likely you could not even budge it. No, you start with what you can do and move up in weight from there.

If your goal is to do a move like the one hand handstand you can’t just start with a lighter weight. Most bodyweight exercises don’t work this way. Just going for the move is like trying to deadlift 500 lbs. when your max is 300. Not gonna happen.

An easier version of the move is essentially the same thing as a lighter weight. When you are good with one move you move on to a harder variation, just like adding weight.

Failing to do this is why so many people never reach their goal. They just try the move over and over seeing little or no progress.

One move for the one hand handstand is to place your other arm on a raised box or chair and use it to help balance.

For the normal handstand you have moves like the headstand and frogstand. But there are many more for these moves and others.

That’s the genius in how Professor Orlick taught his students. Each move leads in to the next. For the best methods of mastering any hand balancing move check out the Hand Balancing Mastery Course.

If you learn this lesson well, you can apply to many other forms of exercise.By training in this manner you can and will progress much faster. I guarantee it.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

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

P.S. Right now you can do no better than to get what has been affectionately referred to as the “Hand Balancing Bible“.

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Revitalizing Handstands

Traveling down to Los Angeles this weekend. Just a quick 6 hour drive for me.

It got me thinking about one of the uses for handstands. And that is ‘clearing the cobwebs’.

Anytime you aren’t thinking straight or feel like your brain needs to be revitalized, after a long drive for example, there is nothing better than getting inverted.

And you don’t need to be a master hand balancer in order to do it.

Just kick up into a handstand against the wall and hold for time. Once you tire of this, whether its 30 seconds or 3 minutes, drop down into a headstand and continue.

Even better is doing a couple of deep breathing exercises while your upside down. You’re sure to get a recharge from this. Add in some bridging and you’re golden.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

P.S. I just received an email you’re going to have to read to believe concerning the Hand Balancing Mastery Course. I’ll get it up on the web soon.

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

Tumbling Illustrated
Tumbling Illustrated on Amazon

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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