Are you looking for a new challenge in your calisthenics routine? Look no further than the handstand push up. Not only is this move an impressive feat of strength and balance, but it also offers a host of benefits, from building upper body and core strength to improving shoulder mobility and stability.
But let’s be real – handstand push ups aren’t easy. They require practice, patience, and a willingness to fall (a lot). But with the right technique and a bit of determination, anyone can master this move.
In this article, we’ll guide you through the key steps and tips for how to do handstand push-ups. Whether you’re a seasoned calisthenics pro or a total beginner, we’ve got you covered. So let’s get upside down and give those shoulders a workout!
Preparing to Do Handstand Push Ups
Before attempting handstand push ups, it’s essential to properly warm up and stretch. This will help prevent injury and ensure that your muscles are ready for the challenge. Here are some tips for a good warm-up:
- Start with some light cardio, such as jumping jacks or a short jog, to get your heart rate up and increase blood flow to your muscles.
- Focus on dynamic stretching, which involves moving your joints through their full range of motion. This can include arm circles, leg swings, and shoulder rolls.
- Incorporate exercises that specifically target your shoulders and core, such as push-ups, planks, and shoulder dislocations.
Once you’re warmed up, it’s time to focus on improving your balance and form in handstands. Here are some tips:
- Practice against a wall: Start by practicing handstands with your feet against a wall. This will help you develop a feel for the correct body position and build up the strength you need to hold the position.
- Focus on keeping your body in a straight line: When you kick up into a handstand, aim to keep your body as straight as possible. Avoid arching your back or letting your hips sag.
- Use your fingers to balance: Once you’re up in a handstand, focus on shifting your weight back and forth using your fingertips. This will help you maintain balance and prevent yourself from falling over.
- Engage your core: To maintain a straight line in your body, it’s essential to engage your core muscles. Think about pulling your belly button in towards your spine and squeezing your glutes.
By focusing on your warm-up and form, you’ll be well on your way to mastering the handstand push-up. In the next section, we’ll go over the key steps for learning this challenging move.
Learning the Basics of the Handstand Push-Up
The key to a successful handstand push-up is nailing the correct positioning of your hands, arms, shoulders, and head. Here’s how to get it right:
- Start in a handstand position with your hands shoulder-width apart on the ground and your arms straight.
- Your head should be tucked slightly, with your chin touching your chest.
- Slowly lower yourself down towards the ground by bending your elbows, keeping your body in a straight line.
- When you reach the bottom of the push-up, push back up to the starting position by straightening your arms.
It’s important to note that handstand push-ups require a great deal of strength and control, so it’s essential to work your way up gradually. Here are some progressions to help you get there:
- Wall walks: Stand facing a wall and place your hands on the ground about a foot away from the wall. Walk your feet up the wall, keeping your body in a straight line, until you’re in a handstand position. Walk back down to the starting position and repeat for several reps.
- Pike push-ups: Start in a downward dog position with your hands on the ground and your hips raised towards the ceiling. Lower yourself down towards the ground by bending your elbows, keeping your head tucked in. Push back up to the starting position by straightening your arms. As you get stronger, try to increase the range of motion in your push-up by lowering your head closer to the ground.
- Negative handstand push-ups: Start in a handstand position with your heels resting against a wall. Slowly lower yourself down towards the ground by bending your elbows, taking at least five seconds to descend. Once you reach the bottom of the push-up, come back up to the starting position using a wall or partner for support.
By incorporating these progressions into your workout routine, you’ll gradually build up the strength and control you need to perform a full handstand push-up. In the next section, we’ll go over tips for refining your technique and improving your range of motion.
Refining Your Handstand Push-Up Technique
Once you’ve mastered the basics of the handstand push-up, it’s time to focus on refining your technique and improving your range of motion. Here are some tips for getting the most out of this challenging exercise:
- Avoid common mistakes: One of the most common mistakes when doing handstand push-ups is arching your back or letting your head droop. To prevent this, focus on keeping your core engaged and your head tucked in. Additionally, avoid letting your hips sag or piking at the hips. Aim to keep your body in a straight line throughout the entire movement.
- Increase your range of motion: To achieve a deeper push-up, focus on increasing your range of motion by gradually lowering yourself further towards the ground. This can be done by using a shorter platform or gradually increasing the range of motion in your pike push-ups. Additionally, you can try placing your hands on blocks or other raised surfaces to increase the depth of your push-up.
- Incorporate variations: To keep your workouts interesting and challenging, try incorporating different variations of the handstand push-up. This can include adding weight to your push-ups, performing them on rings, or even trying a one-arm handstand push-up.
It’s essential to approach handstand push ups with patience and perseverance, as they require a great deal of strength and control. By focusing on proper technique and gradually increasing your range of motion, you’ll be well on your way to mastering this impressive exercise.
In the final section, we’ll go over some additional tips and considerations for incorporating handstand push-ups into your workout routine.
Advanced Handstand Push-Up Variations
If you’ve mastered the basics and are looking to take your handstand push-ups to the next level, there are several more challenging variations to try. Here are some of the most advanced handstand push-up variations:
- Deficit handstand push ups: This variation involves placing your hands on a platform or blocks, allowing you to lower yourself even further towards the ground. This increases the range of motion and requires even more strength and control.
- One-arm handstand push-ups: This move requires incredible strength and balance, as you’ll be performing a handstand push-up with only one arm. This variation should only be attempted once you have built up a high level of strength and control in your regular handstand push-ups.
- Freestanding handstand push-ups: This is the most challenging variation of the handstand push-up, as it involves performing the exercise without any support or assistance from a wall or other surface.
It’s important to approach these advanced variations with caution and to progress gradually. Here are some tips for safely working up to these challenging moves:
- Focus on building strength and control in your regular handstand push-ups first. Make sure you can perform several reps with proper form and a full range of motion before attempting more advanced variations.
- Incorporate the more challenging variations gradually, starting with a smaller range of motion or a lower platform. As you get stronger and more comfortable with the movement, you can gradually increase the range of motion or difficulty.
- Listen to your body and avoid pushing yourself too hard too soon. If you feel pain or discomfort, stop and reassess your form or level of difficulty.
By incorporating these advanced handstand push-up variations into your workout routine, you’ll continue to challenge yourself and build impressive strength and control. Just remember to approach these moves with patience and caution, and to always prioritize proper form and safety.
Incorporating Handstand Push-Ups into Your Training
Handstand push-ups are an excellent exercise to add to your calisthenics routine, as they offer a range of benefits for both strength and mobility. Here are some of the benefits of incorporating handstand push-ups into your workout plan:
- Build upper body strength: Handstand push-ups are an incredibly effective exercise for building strength in your shoulders, arms, and upper back. By incorporating them into your routine, you’ll see improvements in your pressing strength and overall upper body development.
- Improve balance and stability: The handstand position requires a great deal of balance and stability, which translates to improved body control and coordination. By practicing handstand push-ups regularly, you’ll develop better overall balance and stability.
- Increase range of motion: By gradually increasing the range of motion in your handstand push-ups, you’ll develop greater mobility and flexibility in your shoulders and upper back.
To incorporate handstand push-ups into your training, you can add them to your regular calisthenics routine or use them as a standalone exercise. Here are some suggestions for how to incorporate handstand push-ups into your workout plan:
- Use handstand push-ups as a warm-up exercise before your main workout. This will help activate your upper body muscles and prepare your shoulders and back for more intense exercise.
- Add handstand push-ups to a full-body calisthenics workout. This can include other exercises like squats, lunges, and pull-ups, for a complete strength-building workout.
- Use handstand push-ups as a standalone exercise, performing several sets with increasing difficulty and range of motion.
Whatever your approach, it’s important to focus on proper form and gradually increasing the difficulty of your handstand push-ups. With consistent practice and patience, you’ll develop impressive strength and control in this challenging exercise.
Handstand push-ups are a challenging but rewarding exercise that offer a range of benefits for both strength and mobility. By practicing the proper form and gradually increasing the difficulty, you can build impressive strength and control in your shoulders, arms, and upper back.
Remember to always prioritize safety and proper form when practicing handstand push-ups, and to progress gradually over time. Incorporating these exercises into your calisthenics routine can help you build upper body strength, improve your balance and stability, and increase your range of motion.
So whether you’re a calisthenics enthusiast or just looking for a new challenge, give handstand push-ups a try and see what you’re capable of achieving! With consistent practice and a bit of patience, you’ll be amazed at the progress you can make in this impressive exercise.