Tag Archives | Upper Body Strength

Planche Training

The quality of the questions coming in has, for the most part improved.

Here’s a great one on planche training from Josh,

“hey ive just learnt about planche a few weeks back and have looked up many ways of progression towards a full planche, i know it is not an over night thing but what would you recommend to do for progression? i can just hold a tuck planche for about 10 seconds but im not very far off the ground”

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

There are a few different ways you can go about this.

I’ll give you one of the best ways to do it. I was just re-reading The True Art and Science of Hand Balancing and Bob Jones talks a good amount about it on the chapter about the Planche.

The planche is such a difficult feat to perform because of the enormous leverage against the shoulders. On top of this you have to keep your body completely straight with no support except by the arms.

How do you work up to this? By making it easier. And that means lessening the leverage.

Here’s two ways you can do that. Spread the legs as wide as you can. And bending the knees. Combine these to lower the leverage even more.

Even like this though, most people will not be able to hold a planche position. It still requires great shoulder and upper body strength.

So work it as far as you can go. Lower from a handstand as far into the planche as you can, with the bent and spread legs.

Work this over time and you’ll build the strength you need.

If you want more on the planche get the book here. Plus you’ll learn what a true planche looks like and why most people are doing it wrong.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,
Logan Christopher

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Weightlifting and Hand Balancing

Does lifting weights help to hand balance? The answer is yes and no.

Let me qualify all the following by saying there are many different ways to lift weights. Whether you are doing power lifting, Olympic lifting, bodybuilding, or just good old fashioned strength training with barbells and dumbbells. How you lift matters as much as anything.

Certain exercises are going to help you out. And others won’t do much for you.

Specifically for pressing movements. It requires a tremendous amount of strength to be able to push your bodyweight overhead. You need strong triceps and shoulders.

Since many presses take you through different planes of movement, not strictly overhead work, such as a press from half planche to handstand or the frogstand press you will also need strong pectoral muscles. Of course your back and abdominals are used to keep you stabilized.

If you use weights to make these muscles stronger than you will be able to do these stunts easier.

Of course hand balancing takes a huge degree balance. While weightlifting can help your coordination, it is nothing compared to what you need to stand on your hands.

Being able to press a heavy barbell overhead has no carryover to being able to hold a handstand.

A handstand is a skill and needs to be practiced in order for you to get good at it.

These days many people are moving away from weights because they think they are not functional. To that I have to say it all depends on how you use them.

Whether you decide to build you upper body strength with barbell presses or with handstand pushups is up to you. They both build strength.

Spend some time using both and see how well they work for you.

Professor Orlick outlines a full on course of barbell, dumbbell, bodyweight and other exercises in Hand Balancing Made Easy. If an accomplished hand balancer like him believed in them, than there surely is value in the exercises.

In addition, in the interview I did with Jim Bathurst he talks about his favorite weightlifting exercises and which ones carryover to his hand balancing best.

Good Luck and Good Hand Balancing,

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

Logan Christopher

P.S. Professor Orlick even has some very creative weightlifting exercises to help with the one hand handstand. Now you can get How to do the One-Hand Handstand by itself.

Hand Balancing and Weightlifting Combined

Hand Balancing and Weightlifting Combined

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