Displaying items by tag: handstand pushups
You on this list, and indeed those of you that have bought my books etc are no doubt aware of my liking for the CLOSE grip pushup – and all it's many variants.
That being, to bring the hands in close together while doing pushups – or the “elbows in” boxer style pushup as I like to call it.
I dont know why, but every time I say pushups, people think this means either with arms at shoulder width, or slightly wider than that.
And I have to say this.
If THAT style is all you're (primarily) doing for that type of pushup (and there are many!) then you're not only doing yourself and your strength training a disservice, but the mighty pushup as well!
Believe me, the elbows in variant is so much better than the regular version that I could probably write a mini -manual on that alone!
And while the regular version(s) are fine to start off with I don't recommend you “stay” there.
(Of course, it's still better than benching or doing nothing, but hey ... )
Anyway, in came a question from a subscriber a while ago that I completely forgot to address here.
What are your thoughts on close grip handstand pushups? Would you say they work the body and the shoulders, specifically, more intesely than the regular version?”
There was more. He had another question which I believe I did address ...
... But back to this one, and it's a good question actually
I don't really advocate the close grip version of the handsand pushup my friend – for two reasons primarily.
One, BALANCE and reducing unneeded stress and strain on the wrist (and indeed, by extension) the elbows are parmount when doing any upper body exercise, and all the more so for intense workouts such as what handstand pushups lend themselves to.
And believe me on this one – no matter how much of an expert you are or will get to be at these, the closer you get, the more “unbalanced” you'll start to get.
Handstands and handstand pushups are meant to work the MAJOR big muscles of your upper body and the forearms. And the core, of course. And lower back.
But again, upper body wise – that means traps, shoulders and LATS (is it any surprise that I've always mentioned handstand pushups as one of the keys to getting better at pull-ups, and why the two together make an unbeatable workout combo?) . . .
And the closer you get with your hands when upside down, the more strain goes AWAY from said muscles.
Not good, and not what you want.
And as for “diamond” style handstand pushups?
Well, you could try – but again – I believe the variants I give you in Shoulders like Boulders, combined with the pulling variants in Battletank Shoulders are ALL you need for your entire life in that regard my friend.
As for pull-ups, well, you're already well aware of my views on the close grip pull-up – and why
One of the best ever movements! Enough said, hehe.
Anyway, these and MANY other “faq's” make their way to me pretty frequently my friend, and sometimes I forget to address them in these emails.
And that is why I did up the “faq” on handstand pushups – and PULL-ups.
25 in each book, I believe – or mini book I should say, and if you're ordering off the 0 Excuses site, well, they're yours FREE with the purchase of the other books.
But if you're ordering off Amazon etc, well, it's a seperate order.
I don't believe I've gotten around to putting them anywhere else, unlike my other books, and I probably won't either. Hehe.
Well, my friend – thats it for now. Have at!
PS – Pick up the best course on pushups right here – Pushup Central. My fingers grow weary of typing it, but I'll do so anyway – I nigh on challenge you to find one better than THIS! ;)
Well, well, well.
Holy Mary as they say.
Holy Moly as came to my mind, hehe.
I realize dthat although I mentioned “lower” back in the last email, I completely forgot to mention anything at all about lower back and anything related in that email!!
Being I already sent it out, here goes in THIS email.
And I will keep the heading short lest I forget again!
So lower back, yes. And muscle memory.
We got into muscle memory in the last post, eh.
But as far as the lower back is concerned, it's a weak, weak area for MANY people - most notably the pumpers and toners at the gym, but also those that “focus mostly on pounding the pavement” - or for those for whom “the bench press is where it's at” - or thos ethat do heavy deadlifts regularly, and so forth.
That deadlift, by the way is responsible for causing more lower back pain in the gym than most other exercises my friend. Because most people just don't do it right, and even if they do, it's a completely unnatural movement the way it's taught and done.
I mean, think about it.
How often do you pick up an object with a grip like that, not to mention “conveniently” shaped like a barbell off the ground in daily life and grunt your way through for reps?
IF it were a beer barrel you were “cleaning”, I'd get it ...
But anyway, point of this.
I've made NO Secret of the fact that the bridge is the best exercise by far both lower back and core strength, and getting rid of lower back and NECK pain quick.
There is a real good reason wrestlers (real ones, not the WWE 'roid monsters) and boxers for one do these all the time, not to mention strongmen (again, real ones) of yore did 'em all the time.
Because the exercise and the way it stretches the entire body is beyond comparison, and the neck and lower back benefits immensely from the bridge and all it's variations.
And being lower back pain is not just “endemic” to most people, but a “pandemic” of sorts I thought I'd say it. Bridging is a course unto itself, but for now, the variations I teach you in 0 Excuses Fitness (from rank beginner no less) are enough to focus upon (and indeed if yiou do it right, it's all you need your entire LIFE).
And handstand pushups are anothe rgreat one for the lower back, though you wouldn't think so would you?
Just like you wouldn't think or believe it's a super, super GRIP exercise until you actually do them and feel them forearms BURNING (and we're not even getting into fingertip handstand pushups, or one handed ones. Hoo boyyyyy!).
And why are handstand pushups so effective at not just building up the entire core and lower back but BANISHING back pain forever?
Well, think about it.
Most niggles and pains are due to weak ligaments and tendons (connective tissues too) - - NOT so much the muscles.
One of the main reasons Hindu squats are so damned effective and a great workout is that they focus on the inside, not the show thigh muscles. They build up the tendons and ligaments from the inside out from whence on the sky, my friend, is literally the limit.
It don't work quite as well the other way around!
Same thing for handstand pushups. In fact just HOLDING yourself in that position, and hell, even getting into it for you overweight folks will noot only get you huffing and puffing nigh quick, but will build overall strength like NOTHING else can.
Not to mention the balance required works the heck out of the tendons etc as well.
Second (or third), another reason for lower back pain is too much fat on the lower abs.
Or “digestive issues”.
Or, “the infamous “bloat”” and let me tell yo uone thing right now.
When you're in an upside down position, all of this and then some disappears QUICK.
Even if you just work on the position for a few seconds.
Thats all it takes for the magic to start working.
And your stomach muscles naturally pull that flabby belly in, and the INTERNAL stomach muscles naturally contract and you'll feel a stretch-cum-contraction all across the lower back in a horizontal manner.
Like someone was “strengthening” the muscle as you did it, literally!
And I felt it today.
Last, but not least, any good core exercise means an AWESOME lower back exercise.
Goes true for leg raises. Holds true for the “vacum” I explain in Corrugated Core. And any other similar exercise.
And that, my friend is that for now. Give these a whirl, and I promise you'll never “go back”!
PS – Here is where you can learn how to do handstand pushups the RIGHT way – the way that gets results – real RESULTS – Shoulders like Boulders.
So, it’s been an interesting day.
Wacko Glyn (remember, I wrote about him) has apparently been foaming at the mouth about something or the other and is getting his knickers in a twist that I blocked him on social media.
Along with a few other bozos.
And of course, his enablers seem to be at it, but this post isn’t about that. We’ll address that later!
For now, lets look at what Charlene, a reader from (apparently) South Africa had to say to me –
Im pretty sure I would break something if I try any of these but I do advocate strength training:) Glad you arent as clumsy as I am...hope one day I can at least achieve one handstand pushup. Good read!
(This was w.r.t my emails on handstand pushups a while back).
And then, to a recent post about hill sprints and pull-ups - -
Ah, Pushups are my nemesis! Can't even do one properly without my hubby helping me up however my hubby swears by pushups but I don't think he knows about the hill sprints before the actual pushup workout. Thank you, will def let him know or better yet, I will let him read your article:)
(now, I did write the article about doing pull-ups, but hey, pushups work as well . . . )
My responses were as follows:
Get good at regular pushups first, Charlene before moving to these. I'm a pretty clumsy guy btw, so if I can do it - anyone! Hehe. Coming from one whose wife once called him Mr Handstand pushup, hehe. Maybe I'll do a post about that soon!
And to the second . . .
Haha, keep trying Charlene! You'll get there - we all gotta start SOMEPLACE! ;-) And yes - the more you get in shape with hill sprints (but start out SLOW!) - the easier them pushups and pullups get!
Now ,key lessons and takeaways from all this (minus the wacko Schofield part , of course!) –
That one, you don’t necessarily need to be a trapeze artist or a hand balancing expert to do any of what I recommend, and even the handstand pushups.
Lots of people have asked me why I don’t include something on FREESTANDING handstand pushups in my books.
Well, I could – but Idon’t for the same reason I haven’t put out a book on doing one armed work as yet.
Because, for the vast majority of people, the BASIC stuff is what they a) need to get good at first, and b) they don’t necessarily even need anything beyond that.
Believe me, the stuff I teach you in 0 Excuses Fitness and my other BASIC courses are enough to kick even seasoned trainees in the can the first few times they try it, and enough to give you a workout that will kick your BOOTY for the rest of your life, my friend.
And if you don’t believe me, well, just TRY some of the stuff first.
But if you really want to go advanced (and even basic handstand pushups are advanced) ?
Well, that’s why I teach you how to do ‘em against the wall, and that’s why I teach you how to do it in a completely different manner than what most of the “experts” recommend!
And second, you gotta start someplace, and with a lot of ladies, pushups are best done on your knees when you first start.
And YES, ladies, you CAN do pushups, and YES, YES, YES, you can do pull-ups – and the latter better than guys in many cases!
I ain’t kidding you my friend. I’ve seen several examples of women that you wouldn’t necessarily consider bionic pump out pull-ups like no tomorrow while the gym bros gawk on in amazement (And the wackos stare and pull their you know what’s).
Believe me – you ladies can do bodyweight stuff out there just as well as guys can, and while pushups may be a bit of an exception to that general rule, you sure CAN do ‘em!
I’ll have more on this in future.
For now, let me end by saying that yours truly was and has often been labeled “Clums” (that’s right, without the “y”) because . . . well, he can be incredibly clumsy at times!
And if he can do handstand pushups, well, so can you – if you work up to it!
And that’s that for now. Back again with more sizzlers – yee haa!
PS – HERE is the ONE DEFINITIVE course on handstand pushups that will get you from “clumsy zero” status to repping them out like there is NO tomorrow – Shoulders like Boulders.
I had an idea recently in the shower, and just had to write to you about it.
Not the idea itself, but the “concept” behind it.
And my idea was getting my daughter to do supported handstands while I hold her ankles, and have her walk around in that position.
That’s a FANTASTIC exercise by the way, and the only reason it ain’t included in either Battletank Shoulders or Shoulders like Boulders is because you pretty much need someone to hold on to your legs for that, unless you’re at elite status and can do it on your own.
(And you can, if you work up to it, but most of YOU reading the books wouldn’t be able to at the start, and therefore . . . ?).
Now, that reminded me of a dinner (lunch, actually) I was having with a couple of students of mine once a few years ago.
I gobbled up my food, while they kept picking at it for a while.
And Carol (remember her??) told me a couple of days later about this once.
“You’re Mr. Fast”, she giggled. “You do everything fast!”
“Talk fast, type fast, read fast, EAT fast” (for background, she was an English student first, and fitness student later, so . . . )
(Talk about killing two “birds” with one stone, pun NOT intended) . . .
Anyway, we gave her a nickname as well.
And I’ve been called worse things of course! ?
And there are worse things TO BE than be this way, and as I recently told my daughter.
“Honey, you should be a speed demon at most things!”
Anyway, my wife a couple of years ago saw me doing handstand pushups.
And that night in bed with my daughter they were discussing a name for me.
And while my daughter came up with several hilarious names, my wife hit the nail on the head when she said “nah”.
“He’s Mr. Handstand pushup!”
And so I am my friend.
So I am, and there are WORSE things to be! ?
Has there ever been a name YOU were called and that just “stuck”?
Write back – and let me know!
PS: As I wrote about recently, handstand pushups done right are one of the best exercises out there that you can do, and everyone should get damn good at them. But the basics are always key and HERE is the System that will get you firmly ground in the basics (and truth be told, this is a fitness system you could follow your entire life without doing nothing else and still make gains) – https://0excusesfitness.com/0excusesfitnessystem/
PS #2 – Check out our other products as well while you’re at it!