The Handstand Pirouette

By Laurie Galassi

Video Article

If you’re faced with lengths of handstand walks in a workout, why not use a pirouette to turn around and come back?

“To do a handstand pirouette, you have to have a really good sense of where vertical is,” says Laurie Galassi, a gymnast and coach at CrossFit Santa Cruz.

Starting beside a wall, Galassi has her athlete establish a solid handstand position. Then Galassi has the athlete kick upside down and take a few controlled steps toward the wall. This, Galassi says, it the prerequisite to the handstand pirouette.

Moving away from the wall, Galassi puts a chalk X on the floor and has the athletes use the center of the X and the ends of the lines to guide their rotation in 90-degree increments.

The key is to keep the core tight, welding the arms to the torso, hips and legs. If the hands rotate and the hips don’t, you’re in trouble. The knees, hips and armpits should rotate as one.

“You’ve got to squeeze your butt. That way you’ll turn in one piece,” says Galassi.

Video by Hollis Molloy.

7min 1sec

HD file size: 160 MB
SD wmv file size: 91 MB
SD mov file size: 53 MB

Please note: These files are larger than normal Journal videos. For smoother viewing, please download the entire file to your hard drive before watching it (right-click and choose Save Link As...).

Additional reading: The Freestanding Handstand Push-Up by Roger Harrell, published June 1, 2006.

Free Download


2 Comments on “The Handstand Pirouette”


wrote …

Thanks, awesome video!


wrote …

Great video, thanks! Love how you explain things...

Leave a comment

Comments (You may use HTML tags for style)