Handstands & Handstand Pushups

handstand modifications

Benefits & Technique of the Handstand and Handstand Pushup

Some people might think crossfit athletes are a little "nuts" doing things like tireflips, rope climbs and stone to shoulders. Along with those movements you don't typically see in other gyms are the handstand, handstand pushups and handstand walks. Yes, these movements are a little unconventional but they also have countless benefits and are instrumental to becoming a strong crossfit athlete - and they're fun!

Benefits of Handstands and Handstand Pushups:

When doing handstands and handstand push-ups the athlete must use the shoulder, triceps, pectoral muscles, a strong core and even call on the strength of your glutes. In order to perform a handstand push-up these muscles must first be developed which is why our crossfit trainers are skilled in scaling, or modifying, the handstand pushups in order for our athletes to progress.

Progressing to the Handstand Pushup

At Coca CrossFit, when we talk about handstands they're against the wall - rather than a free-standing handstand. We typically use the handstand as a progression to build strength for the handstand pushup - also a movement we do against the wall. Our crossfit trainers usually start with pike push-ups on a box, then finally moving to the wall will work on slowly focusing on kicking up to the wall and slowly bringing your head down to the floor (on an abmat), then a kipping handstand pushup before the athlete will develop the muscles and strength to master the handstand pushup. This process could take years.

Strict Handstand Push-Up

Mastering these aspects of the handstand push-up will guarantee continued success and strength development - not to mention more fun in your workouts! With hands just outside of your shoulder width distance, kick up to the wall and extend your arms. Keeping your toes pointed, glutes tight (yes, squeeze your butt) and core tight, move elbows forward to initiate and implement the descent. Slowly descend until head touches the ground and then push your body back up, fully extending the arms and bringing your head through as you open your shoulders.