Off the Pole focuses on non-pole exercises – so you can learn about different training methods to help strengthen and balance your body. Here you can find different tips and tricks for equipment and training.


Handstand February: ‘How to Survive’ part 1 – Failing


Ladies and gentlemen, let the handstanding begin!

With every February comes the handstand challenge, and with it, the improvement of a technique which is at the foundation of being both balanced and graceful on the pole.

Handstands 101

When giving a new technique a go you should always be mindful of 3 things:

  • Fail Fast

You need to commit mind and body to leaping over those earlier hurdles as fast as you can, and this means accepting you’ll fail a lot.

You’ll notice that learning curve will get steeper, but with it, the speed at which you develop your skills will also increase. And our community is here to help you.

(Keep an eye out for tips on getting over the fear of handstands soon!)


  • Fail Often

The number of attempts that ANYONE requires to climb a skill level, whatever the subject at hand, is enormous – you first need to develop an understanding of the ins and outs of everything within that tier, to progress.

This can be daunting, but it shouldn’t, since this is all part of the process of gaining confidence to succeed on every attempt.

Consistency is key, you’ll hit plateaus and it won’t always be smooth sailing, but as long as you keep at it – you’re moving closer towards your goal.


  • Fail Safe

This is almost self-explanatory, but you need to know how to be safe; Samantha Starr emphasized that same how during episode #4 of the OTP Podcast.

Paraphrasing, If you get used to falling safely into a cartwheel, you’ll be able to effectively fall less, and gain the balance (and that much needed confidence) faster.

Another way to go about this is to work with an experienced spotter who can help you dismount from the handstand safely and correctly.

Warm ups: It’s imperative that you warm up your wrists, forearms and shoulders sufficiently before handstand training. This will help to mobilize these areas so you can get into the correct positions, reduce the risk of injury and allow you to recruit your muscles optimally. Keep an eye out for next week’s PoleWOD which will be all about Handstand warm-ups.

The next stage of handstand development is overcoming your fear, but I’ll only get into that next week! So remember to drop by again to check it out, next Thursday!







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