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Posted by Keith Pettit on

Lack of wrist flexibility and strength is an often overlooked problem.When you are in a handstand, you want to try to keep your back and shoulders still and do all of your balancing with your hands and wrists. This means you need to work on your wrist flexibility as well as the strength.

Look at a close up of this boy’s hands and wrists. When holding a handstand his fingers should be pointing forward. See how his fingertips are pressing into the mat? He is using his fingers to help him balance.  

Notice the angle between his hand and forearm is 90 degrees or even less. If you cannot bend your wrist comfortably that much then you will have a hard time holding a straight handstand.   When you start to walk, your wrist will need to bend even more.

Spend a couple of minutes stretching those wrists when you warm up. Stretch your wrists in every direction.  Put them palm down fingers pointing forward and lean forward and to each side. Then have fingers point back towards you and repeat. Flip the hands over, palms up, and apply slight pressure on them. Hold each position 10-15 seconds. Make sure you stretch your wrists every time you workout.

Here are a couple good wrist exercises.


Start on your knees at first putting just light pressure on your hands. Push through your hands until you get up to your fingertips.  As you get stronger do these without your knees touching in a full push-up position.

The second exercise begins with your hand turned over, rock up onto your knuckles. Again start on your knees and as you get stronger go to the full push-up position.

Do two sets of 10 of each of these exercise.

It doesn't take a lot of time to stretch and strengthen those wrists - its definitely worth the effort!

More tips?  Go check out my tutorials.  Use the discount code "bars" for 25% off!

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  • Hi Coach! I just found this page and I have to tell you that I think is fantastic! I’m very interested in Gymnastic Strength Training and I think your work is very good!

    Job on

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