Let's Get Upside Down For The August Fitness Challenge

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I cannot do a handstand. Or a headstand. I get kind of terrified even just trying to put my legs up above me onto a wall. Are you with me? Let’s get out of our comfort zones. If you can already do handstands, well, I’ll have some extra challenges for you too.

One way to get started is to try wall walks. You start on your hands and knees, with your feet touching the wall. Put your feet up onto the wall, one at a time, and see how high you can go.

Not gonna lie, I only get about halfway up before I chicken out. It’s hard to figure out how much of my difficulty is mental versus a lack of shoulder strength. I expect over the course of the month I’ll figure that out.

Getting there... (Photo: Beth Skwarecki)

Another beginner move is to put your feet on a box or chair, and angle your torso until it’s vertical (head down, butt in the air, feet still on that box). You can see the technique in this introduction to handstand push-ups, but for our purposes this month, the push-ups are optional.

You can tell I’m still kind of chickening out here—my torso isn’t fully vertical. (Photo: Beth Skwarecki)

There are many ways to get upside down, so choose one as your goal for this month, and practise it every day. Some suggestions:

  • Working toward handstands, with the methods above
  • Working toward yoga headstands
  • Doing other yoga inversions, such as shoulder stands or wheel pose, or even downward dog if that’s where your comfort level is
  • Walking on your hands, if just standing there is too easy for you

With any of these, make sure to stay safe! If you aren’t sure of yourself, get a trainer or experienced friend to spot you, stay on soft surfaces, and read up on any other safety pointers relevant to your method of choice.


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