Mequon CrossFit Mortalis

Road to Rio: Handstand Walking


Video & Article by Danni Krumins

Have you ever wanted to be able to just walk around on your hands? 

Now that you have had a chance to practice your handstand with the tips and progressions from my first article Road to Rio: The Handstand, you can start working on handstand walking and learn to walk on your hands almost as good as your feet in no time!

This skill requires core strength, shoulder strength, and good body control when you are upside down because you are going to have to maintain a handstand position while moving and shifting your weight.

The best way to increase body awareness and strength for handstands is to practice being in a handstand! In the video below I will demonstrate a few drills that will help you become comfortable with shifting your weight from hand-to-hand and increase your overall strength and stability in the handstand position.

Wall Slaps

This is a great drill for learning how to shift your weight in a while handstand. You want to make sure that your body stays in one, stacked line as you put all of your weight over one hand, and show control as you are bring your hand back down ground. To make this drill a little easier will starting off, just tap your shoulder or a lower spot on the wall, working your way up to your hip.

Around the World Walks

This drill is definitely a shoulder burner! For an extra challenge you can add a handstand pushup each time you change directions.

Wall Walks

This drill will simulate the weight shift and forward motion of handstand walking with the assistance of the wall. Focus on keeping a tight core and good body position the entire time.

Spotted Handstand Walking

Once you are feeling ready, grab a coach and have them spot you! Make sure the spotter is someone that is confident and strong enough to help you properly, and to assist if something should go wrong. Also, be sure that you and the spotter communicate what is going to happen before you start.

Tips for The Handstand Walk:

  1. Kick up and hit a handstand position before you start to move your hands forward
  2. Keep your body tight and tall for as long as possible
  3. Active shoulders – shrugged and locked into place
  4. Fingers spread to help you balance
  5. Know how to safely exit your handstand either by forward rolling or coming back down to your feet

The best way to get good at handstand walk is to practice! Try challenging yourself and practice for speed or distance, or even set up a little obstacle course to do on your hands.

Not only are handstand walks used by the gymnasts you will see in Rio, but you can also keep an eye out for them in the CrossFit Games that start this week!