Here are some tips to keep in mind....
Strengthen Your Wrists
This is HUGE! It's something I overlooked when I started doing inversions. After months of repetitive handstands, I found myself in pain to the point where I had to take time off to recover. Take the time to warm up, strengthen and prepare your wrist before putting load onto your hands.
Speaking from experience, I approached handstands completely backwards. I spent weeks trying to throw my legs into the air, and thinking I found balance when I held it for half a second. Start small and low to the ground. Yoga and handstands go hand in hand. Try a crow pose, taking one foot off the ground, then both, and seeing how long you can hold. Then, try to take your knees off your elbows and hold a tucked position, maintaining balance. From there you can progress into a headstand, forearm stand and then into a full handstand. Working up to your handstand is important, in baseball you can’t score a point until you touch all the bases. Take the time to become efficient at each pose before moving onto the next.
Love the wall
Once you find yourself progressing into a full handstand, take the time to practice against a wall. This is something I also overlooked and it would have made my progression much faster. Take yourself as close to the wall as possible, straighten your body so that only your toes and chest are touching the wall. If you are facing towards the wall, push through your palms to pull your toes off the all and through the fingers to go back towards the wall. If you are facing away from the fall, press through your fingers to come off the wall and palms to come back to it. Try to find a center point where you are balancing pressing between your palm and fingers to keep yourself from falling and off the wall.
Learn to Fall
There is a big mental block with handstands, and that is fear. Fear of falling will you keep you from finding balance at the top of your handstand. So how do you fix it? Learn to fall, take the time to figure out how to land out of a handstand in every direction. If you have access to a gymnastics gym with soft floors or the grass outside will work just fine. Once you eliminate fear, you will have more confidence being upside down and more confident in your handstands.
Handstands are more fun with a buddy. Find a friend and have them assist you with the handstand. Try this: kick up into your handstand, have your partner create a wall for your legs, so you do not go too far. Have them also block the front so you cannot come back down. Try to find balance between your partner’s arms. Make sure to communicate and let your partner know when you are ready to come down.
Seconds at a Time
When you are upside down, every second can feel like an eternity. So as you are starting to get your handstands, celebrate every second you hold it longer. It may seem like minimal progress but trust me, it’s an accomplishment.
Name: Josh Matthews
Nick Name: Joshy
G+O Personal Trainer
G+O Group Fitness Instructor
Usually upside down
Favorite Food: Peanut Butter
Favorite Quote: "The fear of failure is the fear of the chance to succeed."
Favorite Exercise: Medicine Ball Slam
If he had one super power it would be: All of them.
Current Goals: Taking over the world.
Why he works at G+O: Great environment with motivated people wanting to better their health.