Handstand Walking

Progressions & Tutorials

Step 1: Handstand Basics

In order to walk on your hands, you have to be able to get into a strong handstand position. Much of the handstand is dependant on your global body position and control. Here is the handstand checklist:

1. Hollow body position is responsible for holding your in a posture that facilitates no movement other than the arms.
2. Active shoulders are achieved by trying to lengthen yourself through the shoulder. It also helps stabilize the trunk to the movement in the arms.
3. Head position should be one where you can see your finger tips, but not so tilted that it causes an arch in your trunk.
4. Hand position helps with the weight distribution and overall stability. Having your pointer finger forward allows for 360 degree stability.
5. Weight distribution should be equally distributed, but with a focus on stabilizing through the finger

Progression:
Practice your kick up to the wall and handstand positioning until you are able to hold for 60 seconds in a perfect body position before moving onto the step 2.

HANDSTAND BASICS
(Click Here for Video)
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Step 2: Shoulder Taps
In order to walk on your hands, you must be able to shift your weight from one hand to the other while maintaining all of the basic handstand positions above. Think about using your hips to help shift the load from one hand to the other.

Progression:
1. Start by spreading your legs wider than shoulder width (while keeping the rest of the body, head, and hand positions in tact) to provide extra stability.
2. Shift your hips left to right trying to change the weight distribution from hand to hand. Start with jsut shifting the weight then follow this progression:
- Hand to hand
- Shift + lift of palm (keep fingers on floor)
- Shift + lift hand off floor
- Shift + touch opposite elbow
- Shift + touch shoulder (see video)
- Shift + touch hip
- Shoulder Taps

Shoulder Taps
(Click here for Video)
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Step 3: Handstand Walks

Once you are proficient in shoulder taps, you are ready to try working on your handstand walk progression. The first step in the handstand walk is learning how to control the kickup. It is IMPERATIVE that you make it to a full handstand before starting to walk.

Progression:
1. Controlled kick up - work on touching the fee together (under control) before the touch the wall.
2. Step away from the wall. Complete the previous step adding one step with your hands. (Kick up → feet together → one step → feet touch wall)
3. Complete the previous step, but take another step away from the wall. Complete this cycle until you are able to take 4-5 steps.
Attempt in free space without the wall.

Handstand Walk
(Click Here for Video)
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PRO TIP:
Make sure you work your progressions before you dive into the full handstand walk or else you may start creating some bad habits. Here are some of the common faults, and fixes.

Common Faults & Fixes
(Click Here for Video)
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Step 4: Handstand Pirouette

Once you have figured out how to walk on your hands for 10-20 feet, it is time to learn how to turn around so you can accumulate more distance efficiently without turning coming down.

Handstand Pirouette
(Click Here for Video)
Screen Shot 2017 11 24 at 4.44.46 PM

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About the Author

Stephanie McCarthy

Stephanie McCarthy

Stephanie's career in fitness started almost a decade ago after graduating with a degree in Applied Physiology and Kinesiology from the University of Florida. Over the years she's gained invaluable experience as a business owner and dedicated coach to hundreds of athletes. CrossFit has given her the opportunity to compete with incredible athletes around the country at the Regional and Games level.

 

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