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pikipupiba's avatar

How do I balance without moving in a handstand?

Asked by pikipupiba (1629points) December 13th, 2009

I can do a handstand. I can stand on my hands for long periods of time. I cannot, however, stand on my hands without moving forwards and backwards to compensate for my body falling in different directions. I really want to just stand there, but I can’t figure out how to ‘find my center’, so to speak. Everyone who has made a YouTube video can apparently do it fine and doesn’t explain how, so I haven’t found any help there. Fluther, you are my last hope!!!

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7 Answers

Facade's avatar

That’s the only way to balance. Your body checks itself to stay stable. You do this even when you’re standing still.

colliedog's avatar

Kinesthetic ability is innate. You either have it or you don’t. That’s why some people are good dancers without even receiving a lesson and others can take all the lessons they want without much improvement (looks in mirror).

keithold's avatar

G’day Pikipupiba,

Thank you for your question.

This is a guide to doing a handstand which may prove useful. link


Xilas's avatar

practice makes perfect do it near a wall to practice, and work out your arms & shoulders

Jayne's avatar

@colliedog; definitely not true. I couldn’t do a handstand for shit six months ago. Despite the fact that I seemed to be making no real progress and showed no signs of innate ability, after several weeks of practicing maybe 30 minutes a day, I could hold one with good form for 30 seconds consistently. Now I can balance almost indefinitely (not taking into account the discomfort), and I can even do decent push-ups. It just takes practice; some more than others, but almost anyone can learn.

Now, while the key is practice, a lot of it, I did find it useful to analyze what I was doing to balance. Your weight should be centered over the center of your hands, around the end of your palm. The easiest way to make small adjustments to balance is to exert force through your hands and wrists, and if your weight is over your arms and the heel of your palm, you have no way of exerting torque in one direction; you will fall right back down onto your feet. It puts more stress on your wrists and back, and this position is probably well past where your brain naturally wants you to be; it doesn’t feel like you are vertical, but past vertical. Don’t worry, your brain just isn’t used to gauging your position while you are inverted. So when you go up, go past the point where you fell vertical and you are standing comfortably on the heel of your palms. Go past a few degrees, and you will feel yourself settling into a locked position in which you must exert a constant force through your wrists to keep from toppling over. You also have to relax your abs and allow your back to arch a little bit; it definitely should not be curved forward at all.

I say the easiest way to balance is by pushing with the hands: to keep from toppling over, you push with your fingers (you must engage your abs and control or eliminate the arch of yur back ass you do this, or this may actually push you further over), and to keep from falling back you lift up your fingers and push with the heel of your palm (you may have to bend your elbows a bit to accommodate this). These work with small adjustments like you will be making almost constantly. For larger adjustments, like the corrections you will have to make after the initial lunge, or later if you can’t head them off, you have to bring your body into play. To prevent toppling, try engaging your abs and bringing your legs towards your front; this works best if you bend your knees, although this is of course bad form. Of course, there is a point after which this won’t help, and it will in fact make it worse, but by then you are screwed anyways.

To keep from falling back down (which I always find more difficult), you can try bending your elbows and ‘pulling’ yourself forward, so that your face moves forward past your hands. This will shift your center of gravity forward, helping the balance, but will also bring your body down towards the horizontal, which is a difficult position to support and must be corrected. Thus, this technique for is last ditch use, and only works for fairly small adjustments. There may be other ways to balance in this direction, but I don’t really know them yet. It is better just to hold your body forward over your hands so that you don’t fall that way in the first place.

I hope that helps somewhat; if you need more info, just ask, I’m glad to help. Now no practice!

HumourMe's avatar

Practice, practice, practice. Building up your strength will help as well.

ccrow's avatar

OMG I can’t even dream of doing this- sometimes I’m not so good w/standing on my feet! :-p

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