Wall Holds: Hip Extension vs Shoulder Extension

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mowgli
Posts: 2
Joined: 19 Nov 2020, 17:36

Hi

I have been doing a combination of episodes 5&6 for the last 2 months. Despite somewhat regular practice 3-4 days a week I have been stuck at 25seconds for the endurance holds for the last 3weeks. The first round or two I can get to 30 seconds. After that, the time I can hold (till my arms and shoulders just give way) decreases with each hold.

Doing shoulder mobility exercises has been somewhat helpful but I think part of my problem is also limited hip extension. If I hang off something I can keep my shoulders and torso in a straight line but my legs always end up in front of me. Not sure if that is a useful way of finding the limiting joint complex.

So my questions are: 1. Do you have any recommended hip extension exercises? and 2. What is a good way to tell where the limitation really is?

Happy Handstanding,
Mo
Lucas Vieira
Posts: 1
Joined: 26 Apr 2021, 06:20

Noo
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Natalie Reckert
Posts: 52
Joined: 17 Sep 2019, 21:14

Hello Mo,

Thank you for submitting your question and well done for doing the whole course until the end.

In my experience the "arms giving way" problem is due to limited shoulder mobility.

If your shoulders have a "carrying angle" they are working hard and the weight is not well stacked.

In your case I would recommend you fold your chin to your chest in the endurance holds, it should feel like your are almost touching your chin with your chest. These would be handstand holds with your back to the wall or facing the wall wichever way works best.

Focus on elevating the shoulders as much as possible and think of pushing the arms slightly back to open more (this is not the same as leaning to the front with your chest! which you should not do) It is a shoulder elevation pkus pushing the arms behind you. Try it standing first.

Try to pull the shoulder blades together on your back, this will create a slight outward rotation in the arms. The outward rotation helps you to open the shoulders further.

When you hold the handstand, make sure your elbows stay straight. Pull the floor apart with your hands, this can help create stability together with the shoulder push.

If none of that works well, I recommend doing handstands in a diagonal line towards the wall, helping your to work into the shoulder opening:

https://youtu.be/rnPuytrobMw


I am not sure what the limited hip mobility is. Could you describe that a bit more?

Are you sure your legs are pulling you to the front and not your chest, it maybe sticking out to the front?

I hope this helps and happy handstanding for you too :)

Best,
Natalie
mowgli
Posts: 2
Joined: 19 Nov 2020, 17:36

Hi Natalie,

Thanks for your reply.

I have been keeping my chin to my chest. It makes things a little easier but still not much progress.

I've decided to take a weeks break as things went a bit backwards, maybe I have not taken enough recovery periods and am over training a bit. I will probably start again with episode 4 and incorporate the shoulder opening routine and the video you sent.

With hip extension I mean that my legs are not able to move much behind my body when straight. To allow them to do that my pelvis has to tilt forward (pubic bone towards the feet, tailbone towards the head) and lower back has to bend/arch. So when I do a hold with my back facing the wall my lower back is extended a bit and it is hard to properly engage the abdomen. My hamstrings are also working hard.

I tried to do the wall holds facing the wall first and was able to do the first 4 holds for 30seconds but then couldn't make it past two wall holds with my back to the wall.

Regards,
Mo
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Natalie Reckert
Posts: 52
Joined: 17 Sep 2019, 21:14

Hello,

Yes, I see what you mean by hip extension.

I would suggest that for now you only do the handstand holds facing the wall and in a slight diagonal towards the wall to help you open the shoulders.

Do take longer breaks, everyone's learning speed and recovery time is unique. You could also try practicing on alternate days and focus more on mobility on the days between practicing.

You may find that the endurance holds get easier quicker than you think. It seems impossible at first try but the body builds that type of strength quickly.

Keep up the good work and let me know how it goes,
Best,
Natalie
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