Beyond Banana Back


So you caught some hangtime and felt the sensation of floating. That's fantastic! The first few moments of inverting in a handstand are an unrivaled experience. But then what? Almost without fail, the un-coached handstand begins to take the shape of a backbend i.e. "the banana-back handstand." This happens for a few main reasons:

1) Lack of awareness in the pelvis
2) Lack of openness in the shoulders
3) Compensation in the lumbar spine for lack of engagement elsewhere

In my practice I have been a culprit and therefor a great example of what not to do. But I did my utmost to seek out and train under people who are masterful in their handstand abilities. Luckily at Thunderbolt Power Yoga, Carly Grace is not only masterful in her own practice but has a distinct talent for teaching as well. One of my most recent “Aha!” moments came to me while taking Carly’s Fundamental of Flying Workshop in early Fall 2016. The way she described the breath was different than I heard it described previously. Sure enough it has greatly impacted the ease with which I navigate into handstands, hold handstands in good position, and even play with leg variations. The proof is in the pictures though - as you can see there is a clear banana back going on in both of the top pictures. With time, consistent effort, and consistent willingness to humble myself and start fresh, I’m happy to note a big shift in the line between my hands, shoulders, hips and feet. Come take class with Carly or me for more cues, tips and assists into the realm of flight. Or, for in-depth coaching take Fundamentals of Flying this January 30th from 2-3:30pm. See you in the #yogastorm