HSPUs -Coach Tanner

Handstand push-ups. Go for strict over kipping!

I see kipping handstand push ups happening all the time around the box.  A kipping hspu can be a valuable tool to have when in a competition or in the open but, because of the risk of injury, shouldn’t be done on a regular basis.  If your shoulders are not strong enough to support the momentum that is created in the kip or when your body is coming back to the ground you can easily hurt your head, neck, spine, and shoulders.

I will always be an advocate of being able to do strict movements over movements that involve momentum, especially when a movement requires you to place weight on your head. By training your ability to do strict hspu (as well as other strict gymnastic movements) you ensure that your shoulders are stable and strong enough to hand the forces you are putting upon yourself.

If you aren’t able to do a strict hspu yet here are some exercises you can do to help get you there!

1) strict press- standing or seated

2) pike press- You may have seen my classes utilizing this great exercise as a sub for hspu. Grab an abmat place your thumbs by the corners of the mat closest to you. The raise your hips so that your body is in the shape of a triangle. Now move your torso forward, not down, and make your your elbows point to your toes. Keep moving until your head touches the abmat then press back to your original position. Good luck. These can be challenging!

3) hspu negatives- These are great but can be done wrong sooo easily!! Kick yourself upside down up against a wall. Make sure your hands aren’t too close to the wall. Lower your head, with control, to the ground. Your head and hands should be in a tripod position, not in a line! And once again please make sure you are under control throughout the entire movement! You can add mats in order to lower the range of motion if you cannot control yourself the entire way down. Go for a 5 sec. deficit and increase from there if you are able to!

If you have any questions don’t be afraid to ask me!

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