Get ready for handstands: intro to inverted
Inverted Handstands (Hands) are a great way to start your training. They require no equipment and they are easy to learn. You don’t need any special strength or flexibility skills either, all you have to do is focus on controlling your body weight and balance. If you practice enough, you will soon be able to perform these moves with ease!
The first step towards getting started is learning the basic movement patterns of HSS. There are many different variations of HSS, but most involve some kind of inverted position. The following video shows several examples of various types of HSS:
There are three main parts to an inverted handstand: the hands, the feet and the torso. Each part has its own specific advantages and disadvantages which make it worthwhile to learn them individually before combining them into one big move.
The hands are where the majority of the work happens. Your hands must remain flat against your sides throughout the whole movement. The palms should face each other and not touch each other. If they do, you’ll lose control over your arms and legs, making it harder to maintain balance. For this reason, your shoulders should remain high and as close together as possible.
It also helps to imagine that you’re squeezing a pencil between your shoulder blades.
Most people find it easiest to get into the handstand position by jumping into it from a standing position. This usually leads to people bending their arms while they are learning the move. While this will make it easier to get into the handstand, it makes it harder to balance.
The next step is practicing holding the position with your arms stretched out in front of you. This will get your shoulders and arms used to being in this position, making it easier to balance later on down the road.
Once you can hold the position with your arms outstretched for a few seconds, start bending your elbows and stretching them back out repeatedly. Continue stretching back and forth while you practice holding the position. This will help to strengthen the muscles needed to keep your arms in this position, which in turn will make it easier to balance.
The next step is to start leaning forward and backwards. This will get your shoulders used to moving around while in an inverted position. Continue holding the position and stretching back and forth until you feel comfortable enough to stretch back and forth without losing balance. The more you practice this step, the easier it will be to raise your legs up into the handstand position.
Raising your legs up into the handstand position involves tilting your shoulders forward. This will cause your legs to follow. Raising your legs while stretching back from the shoulders is a little more difficult, but can be done by tilting your head and neck far back while lifting your legs up.
Once you can get into the handstand position with ease, try lifting one leg up at a time. This will require extra concentration, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll be able to balance much easier.
Once you can get into the handstand position with both legs and both arms, you’re ready to combine the two and begin leaning forward. Begin leaning as far forward as you can without falling over. Try to move slowly and smoothly at first, since this requires a lot more concentration than simple stretching back and forth.
Once you can hold the position with your face a few inches above the floor, try lifting one leg up and bending it at the knee. Try to keep the other leg straight and stretched out behind you for added balance.
Combining leg and arm movements is a lot harder than it seems, so don’t get discouraged if you lose balance fairly often when you first start trying. Once you get the hang of it, you should be able to move much faster and with much more control.
Note: Once you are able to hold a handstand with your face a few inches from the floor, you can move on to the next lesson.
Sources & references used in this article:
Neural Training through Handstand–A Guide by R Papa-Adams – spirituality-studies.org
Inversion methods and apparatus by H Johnson, T Cettina – Yoga Therapy Today, 2006 – International Association of Yoga …
The handstand: A four stage training model by CH Leier, L Wang – US Patent App. 15/928,576, 2018 – Google Patents
Research on vision control system for inverted pendulum by V Uzunov – Gym Coach, 2008 – researchgate.net
Handstand push-up exercise device by X Jin, Y Bian, J Jiang, A Li, X Jiang… – … on Advanced Optical …, 2010 – spiedigitallibrary.org