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AlexX

Need help with handstand press

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AlexX

I have a question on handstand press. During the press are you suppose to be actively forcing your shoulder back and down? or is it normal for your body to naturally want to shrug them forward?

The reason I am asking is it causes me significant pain the next day when I practice handstand presses and they come out forward, however if I force them back and down I am no where near a handstand press and very weak in that position.

Second question is what are some good exercises besides dips (can't do them) for pressing I already do handstand pushups and am looking for a second one my goal is to build basic strength before starting work on the planche, I can do planche pushups in a close tuck should I do these( about 2-3 with good form)? or is there a more basic exercise?

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Amebix138

Pseudo planche push ups would be another push variation.

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Liosis

If you can do planche pushups in a tuck, can you hold the tuck planche? If so, I think it would be most beneficial to go ahead and start planche training with whatever progression you are currently able to do. This in addition to any basic strength moves you decide to include.

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Blairbob

Why can't you do dips? Is it a shoulder issue or lack of equipment? Rings solve this but you can also use barstools or chairs for dipping.

If you cannot support free and dip, you could try using two chairs and keeping your feet on the floor or working dip negatives or jumping dips or spotting some of your BW off a block or height so it isn't a full BW dip.

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AlexX

I can't do dips because I compressed my back when I was young its healed but dips put some kind of strange pressure on the ligaments in that area and it leads to extreme stiffness of the upper back if I push it then it gets so stiff I literally can't move my upper body. Not sure if its only with weighted dips or not maybe Ill give ring dips a try.

Anyone have an answer for the handstand press question? I am very confused as to how the shoulders are suppose to be during the movement.

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Blairbob

When I press, I want my shoulders in my ears. If my shoulders are down, that means my back will tend to arch next.

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Coach Sommer
I have a question on handstand press. During the press are you suppose to be actively forcing your shoulder back and down? or is it normal for your body to naturally want to shrug them forward?

Yes you are correct, for a standard press handstand you should be striving to maintain the shoulders above the hands at all times. This means NO leaning forward. Maintaining this shoulder-over-the hands-position will feel as though you are pulling your shoulders underneath you.

Once you have the shoulders over the hands, the next step is to pull the hips directly up over the shoulders. This will be quite a difficult transition for beginners and can be made manageable by elevating the feet up on a box to begin the press. As your strength improves, simply decrease the height of the box.

There should be no back arch during the press. To complete the extension upward into the handstand from the stacked position with the hips above the shoulders, the back should now curl up one vetebrae at a time. Most beginners will fail to execute this portion of the press handstand correctly by allowing their back to either stay flat (like a planche) or, even worse, to arch up during the press.

It is also important to realize that pressing up to the handstand is actually only half a repetition. To complete the repetition, reverse the movement with control and strength back to the starting position. Do not allow yourself to simply fall down.

Once you are strong enough to perform a single correct repetition at a given elevated box height, move on to multiple repetitions allowing the feet to support your weight briefly in between repetitions at that same box height. After you have mastered this, the next step is to do multiple repetitions with only allowing the toes to lightly brush the box in between repetitions. Finally once you are able to perform your press handstand repetitions in this manner at that box height, continue repeating the above process at a lower and lower box heights until finally you are able to perform the basic press handstand from a standing position on the ground.

Yours in Fitness,

Coach Sommer

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Nick Van Bockxmeer

can this procedure be applied to tuck, straddle and pike press handstand positions?

One further question, is their any correlation between HSPU strength and straight arm press handstands?

Is a solid HSPU necessary foundation strength in the arms and shoulders for executing a good press?

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Coach Sommer
can this procedure be applied to tuck, straddle and pike press handstand positions?

Yes. However the caveats for the correct shoulder and back positions remain constant regardless of what leg position is being used.

One further question, is their any correlation between HSPU strength and straight arm press handstands?

Is a solid HSPU necessary foundation strength in the arms and shoulders for executing a good press?

No, straight arm strength and bent arm strength are completey different animals. Profiency in one usually has little to no carryover to the other which is why the correct development of both is essential.

Yours in Fitness,

Coach Sommer

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Nick Van Bockxmeer

ok thanks

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Andrew Browne

Coach, I'd like to see a video of what you describe: a press with no leaning forward at the shoulders and no arching of the lower back. This seems impossible to me unless you are tipping your whole body forward at the wrists, with wrists, shoulders, and hips in a straight line. But even then the shoulders would be somewhat forward of the hands. You can't keep your arms at a perfect 90 degree angle to the floor unless you arch your lower back during the "hips up" phase (and have VERY good hamstring flexibility). There is no counter-balance for the legs otherwise. Did you mean by "no leaning" that the arms make a PERFECT 90 degree angle to the floor?

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Coach Sommer

I will reiterate that there should be no arching whatsoever during a standard standing press to handstand. Nor should the shoulders be allowed to drift forward of the hands. The positions described are not only possible, but essential for the correct development of press handstand strength.

The issues you are having with being unable to obtain the proper positions boil down to two reasons; lack of shoulder girdle strength and insufficient flexibility. The progressions using the boxes as discussed above with allow you to gradually correct both of these deficiencies.

Yours in Fitness,

Coach Sommer

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palmcron
Coach, I'd like to see a video of what you describe: a press with no leaning forward at the shoulders and no arching of the lower back.

not Coach, but this is the best I could find:

CwTQQM3y0fU

(at 3:10 you see a press from the side)

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Nick Van Bockxmeer

i was more amazed by the suppleness of his hips

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Nic Scheelings

Hi Coach,

If the shoulders are not supposed to lean forward at all during a press handstand is there much point doing wall pike press handstands? As these tend to mean you have a large shoulder lean while doing them.

Or in your opinion is it best to focus on the top down approach as in the box press handstand?

Cheers

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Coach Sommer
If the shoulders are not supposed to lean forward at all during a press handstand is there much point doing wall pike press handstands?

Yes, remember that as your strength improves you are supposed to gradually decrease the distance of your hands from the wall until you are to perform Wall Press HS while just barely leaning on the wall. At that time you should progress on to the Box Press HS to continue your Press HS development.

Yours in Fitness,

Coach Sommer

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Spanyard

What about mixin wall press HS and Box press HS? I though about that as I can do wall press HS in straddle but not piked, so may using the box method while my back is on the wall should help. What u guys think?

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Blairbob

More supple hips means easier to handstand press.

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Cole Dano

This has been very helpful, i've had the wrong idea, always thought that the lean forward was part of it.

I take it that this is NOT the way to do it?

http://www.presstohandstand.com/Straigh ... bpage.html

In yoga we do what is commonly referred to as a jump back, bend forward, place hands on floor, attempt to lift feet and land in push up position. I've always has the impression that the shoulders should come out in front to counter balance, similar to the above video, but since this is the same movement i see that the shoulders need to stack! I'll have to play with that and see where it takes me.

The video referenced earlier has been removed, is there another example video, it would really help to see one done properly. A google search is all 'lean forward' style only.

One question for working on this can one benefit by doing the box HS press at a wall?

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James Portillo
What about mixin wall press HS and Box press HS? I though about that as I can do wall press HS in straddle but not piked, so may using the box method while my back is on the wall should help. What u guys think?

I know this is an extremely old thread.. but I have this question as well and saw that it was not answered.

I feel sort of embarrassed that I cannot do a wall pike press HS nor a wall straddle press HS, so I definitely cannot do a box pike/straddle press HS (which is part of tomorrow's/fridays WOD); would wall pike/straddle press HS with feet on box be a good first step to working up to box presses and eventually freestanding HS presses? I would think it would be something like:

box wall press HS--->wall press HS w/o box--->box press HS--->freestanding HS press(?)

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Blairbob

HeS presses. HS presses on the wall, HS presses off box or off panel mat.

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Razz

You can try it as an intermediate step between Hes press and Wall HS press. How long can you hold a wall HS, stommack to wall?

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palmcron

In another thread HeS presses with elevated head were suggested and I believe it's also a good exercise.

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AlexX

If you have a workout partner you can do them with a spot which will greatly help if not Razz's suggestions are the way to go.

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