Posts: 9
Joined: 30 Apr 2020, 03:07

Hi Nathalie,

This is a great course, I am very happy to be part of it.
I am currently on week4 for past 2 days. I need some guidance on the following:

1. In the handstand kicking to the wall, I am able to get into the handstand sometimes head touches the wall and I get down to adjust such that my head is not touching the wall.
When getting down from this holding position, I am having a little bit of difficulty getting down.

2. When I am facing towards the wall and climbing, I am having some difficulty getting down.
And my hands are not as close to the wall like yours, mine are like 1-2 feet away from the wall.
Not sure if that is the reason or not engaging the required muscle groups.

3. In the last endurance set of bending knees to chest and straightening, would like to know if it is okay to maintain distance from the wall to hand as the distance in the L shape hold.

4. Some of my fingers are feeling little numb after the practice, is this common.

Thanks & appreciate all your help and support Nathalie!
User avatar
Natalie Reckert
Posts: 66
Joined: 17 Sep 2019, 21:14

Hello Veena,

Thank you for asking so many great questions :)

Well done also to making it as far as Episode 4! I can tell by your questions too that you are putting a lot of thought and effort into the exercises.

1. I wonder why your head touches the wall here. Are you looking between your fingers? Are you maybe overshooting your shoulders further than your wrists when doing the kick up? Are you rounding your back properly or are you maybe arching? I belive I have sent you this before but just in case here it is one more time, my kick up video, whoch contains the most important aspects of how to kick up:

If you like you can also post a video of that kick up against the wall here. (I think that you should be able to add videos or links here. As the forum is relatively new I am not 100% sure but it should work) I believe it can be an attachment or a link to a youtube video, which if you mark it as unlisted will only appear to the people who click on the link and you can delete it anytime-

Coming out of this position - So you mean, once you are up in the handstand it is hard to come down? That is quite common.
What you need to do is to push actively away from the wall with one foot like in the end of this at 15:00
Additionally you can actually bend one knee and with the actual flat foot push the body away from the wall. Practice this a few times with short holds so that you train the "exit route"

2. Do you mean the handstand holds with your front against the wall or the wall walks? In the handstand holds try to be as close to the wall as possible. Fear of falling may be the thing that keeps you from walking closer in which case try to cartwheel out of the handstand a few times to practic ethe "exit routes"
If you mean the handstand wall walks don't worry if you are not very close to the wall. That exercise si about walking more than the handstand position.

3. Yes this numbness is common. At the end of Episode 6 you find a range of wrist stretches and especially nerv stretches which are the important ones to alleviate the numbness. Have a look at those and add them to the end of your session.
Also push the whole of your palm onto the floor, my guess is that you have a lot of weight on the back /the base of the wrist.
The numbness occurs for two reasons: one is that your whole body weight is pushing down onto the base of your hand where all the nervs run trough to your fingers. So the nerves get a bit squashed and they don't like that (that is why it is better to push the whole palm into the floor, to take weight of the back).
And second, you are building and using a lot of muscles around your shoulder and as the muscles tighten your nerves are less elastic inside the muscle. Healthy nerves are like a seperate string and move smoothly inside the muscle. That is what the nerv stretches are for: to gently pull the nerves so they keep running smoothly through the muscles.
Have a look around the internet if you find it interesting, there are many nerv stretches out there that you can add to the ones in Episode 6.

This numbness is also the reason why I recommend using handstand blocks, they help you to practice longer and with less wrists strain. I'll send you the link here, most people are fine without them but they are an option: https://www.akrobatik-shop.de/shop-1/na ... t-edition/

Hope this helps,

Keep up the good work and best wishes!
Posts: 9
Joined: 30 Apr 2020, 03:07

Hi Nathalie,

I tried to upload video but I get error invalid file extension. Could you please guide me on what extensions are allowed.
Mine is mp4 video.

User avatar
Natalie Reckert
Posts: 66
Joined: 17 Sep 2019, 21:14

Hello Veena,

Please try one more time.

I have changed the maximum upload size to 1MB.

The other option is to send a link to an uploaded youtube video that you can mark as unlisted so that only people who have the link can see it.

Thank you for your patience.
Posts: 9
Joined: 30 Apr 2020, 03:07

Thanks Nathalie, but I am still getting the error as before as the file type is invalid.
Mine is mp4 video.

User avatar
Natalie Reckert
Posts: 66
Joined: 17 Sep 2019, 21:14

Hello Veena,

I have notified my tech wizard to fix this.

In the meantime you can send a Youtube link or send me an email with the file to nataliereckert ((at) hotmail . de

Thank you
Posts: 17
Joined: 03 May 2021, 15:52

This is week 4 from 'The Ultimate 7 week handstand course' from Natalie Reckert
The purple numbers are minutes : seconds in the video on vimeo

Natalie's tip for open up the shoulders/arms:

 In between every exercise: With slightly bend knees chest to wall handstand, control of ribs pulled in, then push the floor away to lengthen up out of the shoulders while at the same time using the body weight (slightly diagonal with the upper body) to open up the shoulder line more. 20 sec hold
 Next step getting closer to the wall, same lenghtening up by pushing the shoulders up, now with the legs straighter against the wall, chin pulled to the chest, again using body weight to getting more opening in the shoulders, 20 sec hold

What is this episode about
• Shoulder opening/flexibility and strength
• Arms up and back, moving shoulderblades up and down: when down the arms can go further back
• In handstand lowering rib cage and pulling the stomach in makes it harder to get the arms open and back, work against that and open shoulders even more

Shoulder opening (2:38)
• Stand with the back against the wall, back and ribcage touching the wall, lift up the arms and shoulders, arms close to the ears, straight elbows, push shoulders up.
• Touch the wall with the hands while at the same time pull the ribs down
• Hold for 10 sec, 3 x

Active shoulder flexibility (4:22)
• Stand in the position (ribs pulled in, abs engaged), arms up
• Push the shoulders up, push the arms back,
• making a semicircle down with the arms while pulling the arms back
• From under pull the shoulders down, pull the arms back and make the semicircle back up again
• 10 x, 2 sets
• Arms to the sides, palms sighting up, straight elbows, shoulders pushed down
• Make small circles with the arms
• 10 x to the front
• 10 x to the back
• Don’t stop
• Bend the elbows slightly
• Stick the chest out
• Move hands and elbows backwards as far as possible and to the middle again
• 20 x
4 (8:49)
• Arms in a horizontal plane, elbows bend 45 degree (as if pushing something heavy to the front)
• Push the shoulderblades back, arms have to stay horizontally
• 20 x
5 (9:27)
• Arms up, shoulders pushed down, with arms creating a diamond shape above the head
• Bend the knees and tilt the upper body forward slightly
• Pull the arms in diamond shape back
• 20 x
• Stretch the arms out to the side
• Tilt the upper body a little bit more
• Move the arms backwards
• 20 x
6 (10:48)
• Grab a stick above the head, little more than shoulder width
• Begin by bending to the side as far as possible
• Curve the upper back to the front and drop your head
• Bend to the other side
• Come above and reach behind opening the chest and shoulders
• Keep on making flowing circles
• Don’t stick out the butt, when making the circle to the back stretch in the thoracle spine
• 5 x one side
• 5 x the other side

Learning how to bridge (13:20)
• Engage the lower core to protect it
• You should not feel the stretch in the lower back
• You only should feel it in the upper back, rib cage and arms

• Sit on the floor, knees bend
• Put one elbow behind you onto the floor
• Lift the hips up and stretch to the wall behind you, the free arm stretched out and reaching to the wall
• Hold the stretch a short moment to really feel it
• Other side
• Head relaxed hanging, looking the the wall behind
• 3 x
2 (15:00)
• Same thing but with straight arms
• 3x
3 (15:45)
• Same thing but when reaching to the back you circle further trying to put the outstretched arm to the floor
• If you can, put the second hand down, turn to the other side, bring the first hand above and back and circle threw till back again sitting on the floor
• This is a way to prepare the bridge! I totally can’t do this. I can’t bring second arm to the floor
4 (16:29)
• Laying on the back on the floor, knees bend
• Arms bend and beside the ears
• Pushing up into a bridge
• Push actively, elbows straight and locked
• Easier (17:21) Lay above a chair to support your weight (for me the chair is too high, I take my fatboy)
• Hold for 10 sec

Leg stretches (17:33)
• Downward facing dog
• Step one foot in
• Lift the other foot as high as possible (of hips leveled or turned to the side)
• Upper leg can be bend or straight
• Push the chest towards the leg while pushing the leg up
• Hold for 10 sec
• Other leg
• Hold for 10 sec
• Role up to standing

Handstands using the wall for support (18:56)
• Kick ups to the wall
• Arms shoulder width (= 2 cm away from the ears)
• Keep ellbows locked
• Activly use the fingers
• Hands 1 hand widths away from the wall
• Don’t stick the head out
• Squeeze the butt and legs together
• Stay leaned against the wall
• For shoulder mobility: push the shoulders up into the ground, take the chin onto the chest and look up to your feet
• Don’t rest the hips onto the wall, keep the hollow body shape

Strenght and endurance (21:14)
In the breaks between, do various arm and wrist swings/short stretches
• Handstands against the wall (back against the wall)
• Hold each for 20 sec
• 4 x, short breaks in between
• Chest to wall handstand (25:14)
• Don’t rest the hips or ribs against the wall
• 4 x, short breaks in between (30 sec)
• L-shape position (30:44)
• One leg on the wall
• The other bending to the chest and straightening up in a continuous movement
• 10 x one side, 10 x the other, 2 sets
• Walk up and down the wall, chest to wall (33:25)
• Start in push up position, so quite far away from the wall
• 5 x (without putting the feet on the ground), 3 sets

Cool down and stretch (37:38)
• Kneel on the floor
• Palms on the floor
• Fingers directing towards you
• Lean back gently to stretch the upper arms
• Hold for like 15 sec
• Stretch further into the fingers by leaning back further and letting the palm come off the floor

• Sit on your back
• Arms behind, hands on the floor, fingers are facing towards you
• Lift the hips up as high as you can
• Keep elbows straight
• Hold for 20 sec

• Kneel, place one hand in front of you (39:00)
• Thread the other hand underneath the straight arm through to the side
• Go as far as the shoulder is flat on the floor
• Therefore you can come up slightly, so don’t sit on your legs
• Stretch by bringing the shoulder with the hand on the floor (now more stretched out to the front) towards the other arm (laying on the floor)

• Upright position (41:00)
• Hold your hand in front of your face, palm facing you
• Grab the thumb with the other hand (coming from the outside)
• Twist the hand so that the thumb is directing to the front
• While pushing the hand down in front of the ribcage
Posts: 17
Joined: 03 May 2021, 15:52

Hi Natalie,
I've questions about my shoulder opening.
It's really poor. My shoulders are anatomically built with a curve to the front, perhaps that makes things even harder. I'm training though....
But still, it would be great to hear your opinion.

I show you in the foto's what I mean.

In the standing against the wall and in the bridge preparations I really stretch back like hell! It doesn't look like it, but it's true!
20210524 Bridge preparation 2.JPG
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20210524 Bridge preparation 1.JPG
20210524 Bridge preparation 1.JPG (382.61 KiB) Viewed 3921 times
20210524 Shoulder opening.JPG
20210524 Shoulder opening.JPG (267.13 KiB) Viewed 3921 times
Posts: 17
Joined: 03 May 2021, 15:52

Couldn't place more attachments,
coming now:

Bridge with support: the chair is too high, I can't bring or my hands or my feet to the ground, the fatboy works better. I can press myself up from here. But it's hard. It's not the lack in strength I think, it's more that I can't bend my arms further back. I feel it more in the arms than in the shoulders. But yeah, my thoracal spine bend is probably also poor.
20210524 Bridge with support.JPG
20210524 Bridge with support.JPG (328.83 KiB) Viewed 3921 times
20210524 Bridge with support too high.JPG
20210524 Bridge with support too high.JPG (321.31 KiB) Viewed 3921 times
Posts: 17
Joined: 03 May 2021, 15:52

One more bridge,
this is it when doing freely. The lack of mobility is holding me back
20210524 Bridge.JPG
20210524 Bridge.JPG (280.25 KiB) Viewed 3921 times
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