Learn How to Walk in a Handstand with this Workout

Instead of just telling you how to walk on your hands, I am going to give you a full “how to master walking on your hands” WORKOUT. This actionable guide to handstand walking will quickly and effectively help you fit calisthenics and handstand training into your busy schedule.

The first time I saw someone walking on their hands, I was mesmerized. I HAD to make handstand walking my goal. So, how did I go from dreaming about walking in handstand to doing it? By structuring my training and consistently working on my handstand of course! 

Today’s workout will build shoulder strength, shoulder mobility,  handstand balance, core strength…and it’ll give you a strong sense of pride when you get that first step!

If you are looking for a fun way to strengthen your body – this is it.

handstand shoulder tap for handstand walking

Should you learn how to handstand walk before you can handstand?

You should do whatever is fun for you! That’s the beauty of designing your own program. If you like walking, get good at walking. If you like balancing, get good at that. If balancing a still handstand is your main priority, save the handstand walking until later in your journey. 

Are you always walking in a handstand by accident?
One downside is that once you learn how to handstand walk, you may begin to walk in your regular handstands more and more……(unless you also train backwards walking to gain more control. More on that soon).

Hey! We are in this together.

Welcome, my name is Summer, I am a self-taught calisthenics athlete with no gymnastics training. My goal with this calisthenics site is to help adults get started in performance-based goals to develop a strong, mobile, athletic body for life!

Learn How to Walk in a Handstand with this Workout

What you need:
Resistance Band
– Yoga Block (if you can’t touch your toes)
– A Wall

That’s it! Oh…and a “can-do attitude.” **Remember, this takes practice.** If you could instantly handstand walk, it wouldn’t be any fun.

Location: Today’s workout can be done at home or at the gym. 

Prep Work
Let’s assume you want to really learn how to master walking on your hands….

In order to achieve that you have to properly prepare your body for the workout! By prepping your body you will have more control and coordination which equates to MORE SUCCESS.

Listen, you wouldn’t squat heavy before doing a warm-up set. Preparing your body for the load is just as important with handstands-especially when you consider that your shoulders and wrists have to be strong enough to push your ENTIRE bodyweight!

Core activation
Core activation is important so that we have active control/connection with our lower body.

If you find your lower back is collapsing in a handstand, STOP, do some core drills, then start again.

4 mins. 20 sec on, 10 sec off

3 sec holds, arch 6x

arch body to hollow body roll with yoga blocks for added intensity

10 reps

arch body lifts

Walking Drills
No one likes cramped hip flexors – so let’s warm up both our lower body and  upper body so we can perform the best handstand walk that we can.

Pick a challeging distance. Don’t forget to switch arms.

walking split kicks with shoulders extended and hands clasped over head

Same distance as before.

walking split kicks

10 per leg.

standing split kicks showing advanced flexibility and beginner flexibility

Same distances as before.

3 legged kick walks for handstand walking beginner to advanced

Handstand Walking Form
Shoulder elevation is KEY. Even elite hand balancers are constantly working on their shoulder elevation. Always keep in mind that you want to…..
push taller, get longer. Stretch your body up towards the ceiling. 

That is why we need to warm up our shoulder elevation prior to doing the handstand walks as it’ll prime our body for the movement. 

I find that if I do not perform shoulder elevation drills prior to handstand walking I tend to be less successful as my shoulders tend to sink causing me to lose balance.

10 reps, 2 sets, 60 sec rest

seated banded shoulder elevation for better handstands

12-20 reps, 2 sets, 60 sec rest

scap push ups top position

2-5 mins

Perfect! Now that your shoulders and core are ready to go it’s time for the main portion of the workout to master handstand walking. 

3 reps, 2-3 sets, 90 sec rest

top portion of a chest to wall handstand wall walk

10 reps per leg, start with bad leg

handstand from a handstand kick up drill

10 reps per side

shoulder tap in a plank

Advanced aim for 15-30 in a row. Handstand Beginners use singles to accumulate 8-10 reps. 2 sets, 3 min rest inbetween each set

handstand shoulder tap for handstand walking

Pick a challenging distance for yourself. You may have to come in and out of your handstand many times to reach the distance. That is fine. Repeat that distance forward and back. 3 sets, 3 min rest

calisthenics girl in a handstand

Handstand Program

Take the guesswork out of learning how to handstand. Build strength and balance with my 30-day beginner handstand program >> 

How to Handstand Kick Up

Step 1. Set up for lunge, arms behind.

step 1 in kicking to handstand, lunge, arms behind back

Step 2. Arms swoop down in front. NOT OVER HEAD.

step 2 in a handstand kick up, hands dive down in front

Step 3. Shift weight onto your front leg, dive forward.

step 3 in handstand kick up, loading the front leg

Step 4. Hands plant, push through shoulders, push off front leg and kick the top leg.

step 4 in handstand kick up, push off front leg

Step 5. Push tall through shoulders, bring legs together, find your handstand.

step 5 in handstand kick up, bring legs together in handstand

Step 6. Reverse the movement ending exactly how you started.

last step pf handstand kick up is to finish where you started in a lunge

How to Walk in a Handstand

  1. Lunge to Kick-Up
  2. Find your Handstand (here’s how to do a handstand)
  3. Look slightly forward between hands
  4. Keep lower back engaged
  5. Lean heels over
  6. Start walking keeping your shoulders in line with one another – Create the bend through your elbows rather then through pushing one shoulder up (which will cause you to fall)
  7. Keep legs squeezed together. *If you allow the legs to flop you may end up with compression in the lower back. 

Don’t do THIS: https://youtu.be/3EF6p9EFdZc?t=530

calisthenics girl in a handstand

Getting Even Better at Walking on your Hands
After you’ve mastered walking on your hands try walking over something, walking up to something, or walking down something, handstand walking sideways and even backwards!

To be a pro at handstand walking, handstand walk often-it’s as simple as that! 

Now you know how to walk in a handstand! Are you ready to learn how to do a handstand push-up? click here.

This workout can be done twice a week for 6 weeks or so. I hope this actionable guide to walking on your hands has provided you with the tools to achieve your goals.  I’d love to see you try out this workout! Send me an email,  tag me on Instagram in your attempts. 

Ready to get really good at holding a handstand? Try this beginner handstand workout routine.

lunge to handstand kick up