Beginner Handstand Pushups
Today we’ll look at developing the handstand pushup against the wall. The first step is to obviously throw yourself up against the wall into a handstand. If this is already too great a step, try starting with the headstand until you feel comfortable upside-down.
You should be able to hold this handstand position against the wall for at least 15 seconds before you start working toward the pushup.
When you can hold the static handstand position for an adequate time, throw a pillow on the ground between your hands. You’ll now want to SLOWLY lower yourself to the ground. Please don’t dive head first through your floor! When you get to the ground put your feet down, then kick back up into a handstand and repeat.
These negative repetitions will help to build the necessary pressing strength. During these negative reps, you can work on STOPPING yourself in various positions along the way, as well as pushing back up only a couple inches, instead of the entire way.
So to recap the three methods for building pushup strength:
1. Lower down slowly
2. Stop and hold yourself at various points
3. Try pushing up short distances
Keeping the repetitions low and giving a couple minutes of rest in between your sets will help to build your shoulder strength. You may prefer to work this training into your schedule differently though. With practice, you’ll get strong enough to lower down completely to the ground and press back up. Congratulations, there’s a handstand pushup.�۬
If you’re looking for an exercise other than handstand pushup negatives, there are several others that can help you build up your shoulder strength. Nothing too revolutionary, just different ways of working out your arms and shoulders.
The first exercise is simply to start elevating your feet in the pushup position. You can start by elevating your feet with a chair, and work your way up to a desk or something higher. The higher your feet, the more stress on your shoulders.
I’d also recommend trying pushups with your hands by your sides, leaning forward over your hands. You will feel that this places a great deal of stress on the triceps and shoulders. This is also an excellent pushup variation to help your planche. You can work on elevating your feet for this exercise as well.
The last exercise I’ve heard referred to as a “tiger pushup”. Start with your heels against the wall, then reach down with your hands and put them on the ground a couple feet in front of your feet. You should look like an upside-down “V”.
You’ll notice that your upper body is in a position to work the shoulders. You can now perform pushups in this position, which will work your shoulders but put less stress on them than full-on handstand pushups. Work to elevate the feet in this exercise as well to add more bodyweight to the press and increase difficulty.
Now the obvious question – can’t I just work my military press in the gym? Sure you can. I love to work heavy shoulder presses myself. But get yourself up against the wall and working in a handstand as soon as you can. This will help you get use to pressing while upside-down, which feels different than weightlifting, and will be useful for other skills.