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Learn how to use Progressions to perform a perfect handstand



Some exercises simply look fantastic .

We've all seen someone show a movement that requires incredible balance, concentration and power, and that seems to bend the laws of physics and defy gravity. This is what we call heroes' movements, the high-level maneuvers that you saw open-mouthed on Instagram, but never thought you could pull yourself out.

Good News: With the Right Plan, you can learn exactly what it takes to master these hero moves. Crossfit coach and former US national gymnast David Durante is confident that he can help you master the handstand, a classic gymnastics maneuver that requires a remarkable amount of strength, balance and body control to get through properly.

"I like to think of a rounded handstand as this triumvirate, where strength, stability, and position are handled according to their own needs," says Durante. After following his progress and putting in a ton of work, you can also show that coordination and motor mastery.

Handstand Setup

Before you enter the progressions, Durante says that you should make sure you have the right attitude.

Hand and finger positioning

Shoulder width, hands forward with widely spread fingertips

Eye line

Head in neutral position along the shoulder, looking at a fixed position near the thumb

Shoulder Positioning

Angle that allows you to go to (then beyond 1

80 degrees) without restricting the hip position.

Hip Positioning

Working to Achieve Hollow Position

Once in Force If you know how your body should be positioned, you must be sure that you are strong enough to get a proper handstand to reach. That does not mean you just have to blindfold and try to hold onto your hands. "We want to think about spending time with a little more purpose under tension," says Durante. To do this, try these exercises:

Handstand Games

Doubling Game

Start with a 7.5 second hold. Rest your time. Build on 15 seconds and then on 15 seconds. Next, try 30 On, 30 Off, 1 Minute On, 1 Minute Off – You get the picture. Just do not move to the next time interval until you can hold the entire period. If you can not stand it, use a wall to get used to the head.

Breathing upside down

Find positions to practice the same breathing pattern that you practice standing upside down. Try to focus on breathing in a plank position, then lean against a wall and then turn it upside down.

Position Foundation

These exercises will prepare you for the entire handstand – but not all will turn your head upside down. Arms directly overhead

6 reps of 10 seconds duration

Hollow Body Line

6 reps of 10 seconds in length

Position Progressions

Progression 1 – Angled Wall Hold

6 reps of 20 Seconds Holds

Progression 2-7 Position

6 sets of 10-second angles in 10-second position 7

Progression 3-1-leg extension

6 sets of 5 Second Angle Brackets in 5 Seconds 7 Position Hold in 5 Sec. Single Leg Extension

Accessory Drills

Try these accessory drills to machine the soft tissue of your forearm and the T-spine.

  • Prone Raise
  • Underhand grip shoulder stretch

    Stability base

    Durante says the stability of the handstand is too often ignored. This should be addressed by two factors:

    • Micro Stability – The ability of your fingertips to grip the ground
    • Macro Stability – What your shoulders do to support and stabilize your body

      Work on the Enhance your Stability with These Drills:

      • Single Plate Overhead Stability Drill
      • Double Plate Overhead Stability Drill
      • Back-to-Wall Floater Drill
      • Belly-to-Wall Floater Drill

        If you master everyone From these progressions you are ready for the real.

        If you commit to full movement, Durante recommends working on the progressions daily. That means you should focus not only on handstand – on some days, Durante says, even 10 to 15 minutes of work can be helpful. With all the exercises and basic exercises that you have to master, you do not have to turn each time upside down.

        Hero moves are a great way to demonstrate your hard work and athleticism – so if you can succeed in the handstand, do not be shy! Share your skills with us (@menshealthmag) and Durante (@davedurante) and experiment with the places where you perform the move.

        If you want to learn about other hero moves, check out our explanatory symbol on the front lever with the build up, pistol squat, Superman push-ups, and L-Sit. The world can never have too many heroes.


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