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Beginner Handstand Routine

Warm Up

Take your time going through the warm up.  Explore the full range of motion available to you in these movements. If you need to add a few reps or exercises to feel ready, go for it. 

DemoExerciseReps/SetsHow to/Cues
W-Raises 8 repsGo slow and focus pulling shoulder blades together
W to Y-Raises 8 repsActively keep lifting arms up on Y-Raises
Back Extensions 8 repsInitiate lift by externally rotating your arms until thumb is facing the ceiling
Arm Circles 8 per directionExtend arms to the side and create small circular movements
Elbow Raises 8 repsLift elbows as high as you can
Knees to Chest 2 reps x 2Keep back pressed against floor at all times
Wrist Warm-UpFew reps eachChoose 2-3 Exercises, or feel free to add your own. Go through these until your wrists feel ready.
Kneeling Shoulder Shrugs with Elastic2sets, 6-12 repsLook at your hands! Cover your ears with your shoulders every time! Extra slow on the way down.

Practice

Learning handstands takes time. In the beginning it is all about getting familiar with being upside down, and then gradually you will build specific strength & control. Don’t rush through these exercises and take breaks as needed.

DemoExerciseReps/SetsHow to/Cues
Wall Walks2sets, 3 repsKeep shoulder elevation & keep legs nice and tight. Walk as close to the wall as you can.
Tuck Slides2sets, 4 repsKeep hips right above shoulders & maintain shoulder elevation at all times. Make sure to keep knees together and touch knees to walls as soon as they bend.
Box Tuck Walk1set, 2repsChoose a higher box to keep hips from picking. Walk towards the box and away from it
Box tuck single leg extensions2sets, 2reps each legChoose a box that is higher to keep hips from picking. Lift one leg at a time into a straight handstand. Focus on shoulder push
Tuck Jumps2sets, 30sec Attempt tuck jumps for 30 consecutive seconds without a break. The goal is not yet to hold the tuck but to focus on aligning hands, shoulders and hips vertically
45 degrees wall Handstand → bring both legs away from wall2sets, 2reps each sideSet up with your legs straight against a wall in a 45° angle. Keep hips right above shoulders & maintain shoulder push at all times. Bring one leg away into a straight handstand, then let the other leg join into a full handstand. To come back let one leg come back to the wall at a time.
Tuck to straight // alternatively in headstand1-3sets, 1repJump through tuck to straight handstand Hold as long as possible Fight to hold every single handstand
Bonus: Straight to tuck // alternatively in headstand1-3sets, 1repJump through the tuck to straight handstand. Lower down to tuck slowly

You made it!

You’ve reached the end of this workout. Go use your legs and get food, a drink or whatever else gives you joy! 

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Start lying on your stomach face down. Legs are locked and nothing moves except for arms.
Arms in 90° angle, with elbows aligned around the height of your eyes.
Focus on pulling your shoulder blades together as you lift your arms and chest up off the ground. Then bring your hands back to your forehead, and back again.

Start by lying on your stomach. Go from a W-Raise into a Y-Raise, meaning extend your arms up in front of you. Once they are extended in front of you lift them up towards the ceiling a little. That is one rep.

Start by lying on your stomach with your arms extended on each side. Have the back of your hand on the floor. Initiate the lift by externally rotating your arms until your thumb is facing the ceiling. Try to lift your chest up as high as you can, as you squeeze your shoulder blades together and pull your shoulder blades back.

Lying with stomach on floor, extend arms to the side and create small circular movements, forward and backwards. Keep head on ground.

Interlace fingers behind your head and lift elbows as high as you can. Head stays on the ground the entire time. Legs are locked and feet pointed.

Start with back on ground. Lift your arms and shoulders up off the ground slightly. Push through your shoulders to extend your arms overhead, covering your ears with your shoulder. Keep that push throughout the whole motion.
Back stays pressed against the floor - you are trying to keep you ribs in and your core engaged.
To start: lift your legs off the ground into a hollow body hold. Knees are locked and pressed together & feet pointed. From there pull your knees towards your chest. Only go as far as your hip stays in place and doesn't roll up. You want to learn to move your legs individually without having any affect on the rest of your body.

With all wrist warm ups there is no specific number I want you to do, just do them until your wrists are fully warmed up. Generally better take more time to warm up instead of less. Pick the exercises that feel the best for your wrists, and if you already have a wrist warm-up routine, just go with that one.

Exercise 1 - Place palm of hand on the floor in various positions and angles (e.g. fingers facing your knees, fingers pointing to the outside, etc) while you load weight on to your arms gently

Exercise 2 - Place one hand on top of the other and only move your arm around (from straight to bend, imagine you are drawing circles with your elbow)

Exercise 3 - Place back of hands on ground and gently load weight on to your arms. Move around from side to side, front and back to stretch them out a bit.

Extend your arms in front of you and open/close your hands. Work on extending your fingers fully.

Interlace your hands in front of your body and fully rotate your wrists around in one direction and then the other direction.

Put hands together in front you in a prayer position. Move hands downwards and elbows out to introduce a stretch. Go through these until wrists feel warm and ready