Mobility for handstands
Updated: Oct 14, 2019
In previous blog posts, strength/endurance, mobility, balance, and body awareness/engagement were introduced as the four physical capabilities that play the biggest role in Handstands
While it’s impossible to isolate each of them completely during our practice, in order to understand them and to train them efficiently they will be broken down and explained individually.
Which can be technically defined as the motor skill that allows exploiting the maximum range of motion in joints.
The range of motion refers to the amplitude that joints can get exposed to, whilst the capacity of controlling it points to how much the body is actually capable of access and control it through muscular activation. Very important factor!
Take for example the middle splits. How much the legs can open equals its range of motion, but the ability to control that split specifically points to how much the body is able to do so with only the activation of the muscles (typically 20/30% less).
Mobility in this sense is important for handstands because in them we will rarely be able to take advantage of the range of motion in our joints that is not actively controlled by our own muscles.
Better levels of mobility have a huge impact on the handstand practice as it increases the efficiency of almost every handstand movement and hold. The reason why is behind the handstand principle of “counterbalance”, previously mentioned in the blog.
In simple words, the more mobility the more weight can be kept close to the vertical projection of our hands so lesser strength is needed to control the handstand.
Mobility training should definitely be present in the handstand practice. Train your range of motion, but also train the capacity to actively control it!
Let me know down in the comments what are your thoughts on this topic!