Grip
Grip

Forearm Conditioning for Handstands

This program is designed to work as supplementary physical preparation for someone working on handbalancing as a skill. It can also benefit any person engaging in a practice where the hands are supporting and controlling weight.

The idea behind this program is that, while the time spent on the hands is enough stimulus to develop the specific strength and physical adaptation needed for handbalancing, we risk overloading and exceeding capacity if we add a conditioning program that uses the same planes as the main work. The aim of this program is to train all the functions of the forearm, particularly the ones that are less stimulated by the specific training in the handstand itself. Additionally, it aims to strengthen and hypertrophy the muscles of the forearm.

Grip at a
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  • 4 EXPLANATION VIDEOS
    Watch and rewatch the exercise explanations, demos and technical lectures at your own pace

  • 30 PAGE MANUAL
    Available as a PDF, or can also be bought in print

  • 8 WEEKS OF PROGRAMMING
    Step-by-step program templates are included, with guided advancement

  • LIFE-TIME ACCESS

  • FREE PROGRAM
    With Member Registration

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What You Get

The Grip program itself can be seen as a specialisation program, in that we do not constantly run it alongside our regular training, but rather phase it in and out over a few months, and then keep it in the toolbox to top up our forearm resilience when needed.

The aim of this program is to train all the functions of the forearm, particularly the ones that are less stimulated by the specific training in the handstand itself. Additionally, it aims to strengthen and possibly hypertrophy (make bigger) the muscles of the forearm.

The program consists of 4 videos across the following sections, and you will learn to find and select suitable exercises out of these and the accompanying manual, covering skillwork and conditioning.

What You Get

The Grip program itself can be seen as a specialisation program, in that we do not constantly run it alongside our regular training, but rather phase it in and out over a few months, and then keep it in the toolbox to top up our forearm resilience when needed.

The aim of this program is to train all the functions of the forearm, particularly the ones that are less stimulated by the specific training in the handstand itself. Additionally, it aims to strengthen and possibly hypertrophy (make bigger) the muscles of the forearm.

The program consists of 4 videos across the following sections, and you will learn to find and select suitable exercises out of these and the accompanying manual, covering skillwork and conditioning.

Level All levels
Goals General forearm conditioning
Duration Specialisation program
Included 4 Videos, 30 Page Manual, Life-Time Access
Prerequisites None
Level All levels
Goals General forearm conditioning
Duration Specialisation Program
Included 4 Videos, 30 Page Manual, Life-Time Access
Prerequisites None

“Learning handstands will put you into a risk zone regarding your wrists, and injuries are likely to happen at some point or other, just as with any complex physical activity. To reduce the risk, the best thing you can do is learn about your capacity and not overstep it.”

“Learning handstands will put you into a risk zone regarding your wrists, and injuries are likely to happen at some point or other, just as with any complex physical activity. To reduce the risk, the best thing you can do is learn about your capacity and not overstep it.”

FROM THE GRIP MANUAL

The Origins of Grip

This program came into being from the need for more comprehensive wrist preparation for artists, athletes and movers who like to stand on, or otherwise put weight into, their hands.

Emmet Louis’ research into the concepts here originated from his own needs. Around 2007, when he was in circus school, he had persistent tendonitis in one arm from overtraining. Emmet had tried all the wrist and forearm exercises common in circus and gymnastics. He then came across an offhand comment by a Canadian strength coach named Christian Thibaudeau. The comment went along the lines that one of the common causes of tendonitis in the forearm is not training all functions of the forearm. This led Emmet down a rabbit hole, searching old strongman manuals for forearm training. After coming across sledgehammer training and leverage-based training and putting it to use for one month, his wrist issues had resolved and never returned.

Consider this program a gift to you, a homage to old time strength training. While we feel coming across an elbow issue at some point in your handbalance training is basically unavoidable if you push for the higher levels, this program will provide an added layer of insurance and possibly antidote to the issue.

The Origins of Grip

This program came into being from the need for more comprehensive wrist preparation for artists, athletes and movers who like to stand on, or otherwise put weight into, their hands.

Emmet Louis’ research into the concepts here originated from his own needs. Around 2007, when he was in circus school, he had persistent tendonitis in one arm from overtraining. Emmet had tried all the wrist and forearm exercises common in circus and gymnastics. He then came across an offhand comment by a Canadian strength coach named Christian Thibaudeau. The comment went along the lines that one of the common causes of tendonitis in the forearm is not training all functions of the forearm. This led Emmet down a rabbit hole, searching old strongman manuals for forearm training. After coming across sledgehammer training and leverage-based training and putting it to use for one month, his wrist issues had resolved and never returned.

Consider this program a gift to you, a homage to old time strength training. While we feel coming across an elbow issue at some point in your handbalance training is basically unavoidable if you push for the higher levels, this program will provide an added layer of insurance and possibly antidote to the issue.

OUR APPROACH TO FOREARM CONDITIONING

When learning to handstand, or even trying to push your handbalancing practice to the next level, it is common to experience some discomfort in the wrists, forearms and elbows. Learning early on to recognise the difference between DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) and overuse is an important skill. Giving yourself permission to skip a day of training here and there is a valuable mindset to cultivate. Taking a few days off here and there to recover is better than ignoring first signs of overuse and then having to deal with tendonitis for a few months.

OUR APPROACH TO FOREARM CONDITIONING

When learning to handstand, or even trying to push your handbalancing practice to the next level, it is common to experience some discomfort in the wrists, forearms and elbows. Learning early on to recognise the difference between DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) and overuse is an important skill. Giving yourself permission to skip a day of training here and there is a valuable mindset to cultivate. Taking a few days off here and there to recover is better than ignoring first signs of overuse and then having to deal with tendonitis for a few months.

More in depth about the Grip program

HOW YOUR TRAINING WILL LOOK

Once you log into your account on our website, you will find the grip program already added to your account. You will have access to 4 instructional videos that thoroughly explain the theory and practice of general forearm conditioning. The videos are broken up into manageable sections that clearly build upon each other. The Grip program has an accompanying manual which you will be able to download as a PDF, or view it in your browser. You will be able to use the manual to quickly read up on an exercise, or study it textbook style. The image shows the first four pages of the 30 page manual accompanying the Grip program.

The website is designed so that you can watch and rewatch the videos for each online program on desk- top, take notes, and fully immerse yourself in understanding the theory behind the art of handbalancing. At some point though, you‘re just going to have to scrap the theory and go do the thing - but don‘t worry, you can just take the videos and manuals with you and recheck things on the fly wherever you‘re training, the gym, the park, at the office... with the Handstand Factory mobile version, all you need is a floor and a wall!

OVERUSE AND INJURY - WHAT'S COVERED IN THE GRIP MANUAL

Apart from the Grip training templates, the Grip manual also gives further information on our take on avoiding overuse injuries. We discuss which phases of your handbalance training you’d be most prone to pushing your body too far, how to monitor your capacity, Conditioning vs. Adaptation in Skill training as well as correct handstand positioning to avoid wrist issues.

The Grip program itself can be seen as a specialisation program, in that we do not constantly run it alongside our regular training, but rather phase it in and out over a few months, and then keep it in the toolbox to top up our forearm resilience when needed.

The program consists of 4 videos across the following sections, and you will learn to find and select suitable exercises out of these and the accompanying manual, covering skillwork and conditioning.

“There is a distinct difference between warming up for a skill session, specific physical preparation for the skill, and general physical preparation.”

“There is a distinct difference between warming up for a skill session, specific physical preparation for the skill, and general physical preparation.”

FROM THE GRIP MANUAL

GRIP

Who’s Teaching

Mikael Kristiansen and Emmet Louis are both international teachers of handbalancing and flexibility and have spent big chunks of their lives studying and understanding all aspects of these skills professionally both as performers and teachers. With Handstand Factory, they now want to demystify and simplify the process of learning handstands, and make it accessible to anyone wanting to learn to stand on their hands. To learn more about Handstand Factory, head over to our about page.

Reviews of the Grip Program

GRIP PROGRAM

Tasha
@tashas_handstands, UK

The only grip specific program for handstanders I’ve come across. I have had wrist and elbow issues along the way on my handstand journey, so I was excited to discover the Grip program. The exercises are super effective and I’m definitely incorporating it into my training. The forearm pump on my first workout lasted for days, but as well as keeping my wrists and elbows healthy, I can open my own jars 🙂

FAQ

Is the Grip program only for warming up?

This is a complete forearm general physical preparation program, not just a warm up routine. It will strengthen your forearms in the less used planes, minimising risk of overuse injuries.

Is the Grip program both for advanced handbalancers as well as beginners?

It is suitable for all levels. Generally complete beginners won’t need this at the start but anyone coming from a physical training background will find it useful as well as professional handbalancers.

I don't really have any problems with the forearms, but should I still incorporate Grip into my training?

This program is not just for rehab purposes but is a comprehensive forearm training program that will train all functions of the forearm, giving a better prepared, more blacksmith like forearm.

How much time a week will I have to commit to the forearm conditioning training?

The program will take about 20 minutes to complete, twice a week.

Can I combine the Grip program with all other programs?

Since this forearm conditioning routine works different planes than those you use in handbalancing, the program can be combined with all of our other online programs with no issues.

When is the best time to start with the Grip program?

This program is a specialisation program and can be added at any time to your training. Each phase lasts 4 weeks so it can be cycled in throughout the year.

Want to know more? These frequently asked questions cover most queries in regards to this program. For questions relating to purchasing the programs, technical support or general training questions, please contact us here. For our Terms and Conditions, go here.

Steel Your Wrists

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Steel Your Wrists