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Mad Hatter

Mad Hatter does handstands

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On 9/4/2019 at 3:29 PM, Mad Hatter said:

Today I woke up early and for the first time in MONTHS I was excited to get out of bed rather than dreading the day. :) I went for a morning swim and it was windy and wavy and awesome and afterwards I realised that I was feeling not bad and it made me cry a little. I'm afraid to be too hopeful but maybe, just maybe things are finally turning?

Ah, so nice to read this. Hope things are getting even better <3

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2 hours ago, Tobbe said:

 

Mhm going to a class is a bit different from following programme, even a coached online programme (which I did recently and it was great). 

Not saying it's not manageable on your own if you so desire, it is - but "hands-on" coaching + having classmates brings its own advantages imo.

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On 9/4/2019 at 6:35 PM, CourtnieMarie said:

what huge wins today! from the little i know about mental health, the change probably won't be linear but so so glad it's turning. minus stupid 18-people meetings...



In the past it's often been a 180 turn, but this time you're absolutely right and it's going to be wobbly. It's ok though. :)  

 

On 9/4/2019 at 8:39 PM, GoodDoug said:

Whatever tomorrow brings, hold on to that memory. I know for me, when I am down, I tend to forget that life can be sweet and awesome. Keeping that kind of memory keeps me in the headspace of, "See it can and will get better"

 

And I think your handstands are great so far. I wish I could hold one for more than a hot second ;) I'm jealous you get to go to a full handstand class... sigh... that would be awesome

Absolutely, that's one of the things I hold on to the most when I'm down!

 

Thanks! You can absolutely learn. :) If there's not a pure handstand class check out adult gymnastics or circus/acro places or even pole dance studios often have handstand related classes. Yoga/acro yoga people also often hold workshops. Even if you can't get to a regular class it can help to spend one or two days with a teacher to gain an initial understanding which makes learning online much easier.

 

On 9/8/2019 at 3:10 PM, Tobbe said:

Sure, but personally I'd rather get an online program from someone that's good at handstands and at teaching handstands. I might be wrong and the resource is amazing, but handstands are quite subtle and I'm not convinced it's enough.

 

On 9/6/2019 at 6:22 PM, raptron said:

SO HARD.

 

Are these leaning to one side? Or some other kind of lean? Just curious!

Uhh I meant to the side, but what we ACTUALLY did was side bends.

 

23 hours ago, zenLara said:

Ah, so nice to read this. Hope things are getting even better <3

Thanks!!! How are you doing??!!

 

22 hours ago, @mu said:

Mhm going to a class is a bit different from following programme, even a coached online programme (which I did recently and it was great). 

Not saying it's not manageable on your own if you so desire, it is - but "hands-on" coaching + having classmates brings its own advantages imo.

Absolutely, working with a teacher can significantly speed up the process and working with other people can really help with motivation. Especially since handstand is a skill where progress is often very slow and subtle and frustrating!

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On 9/8/2019 at 5:10 AM, Tobbe said:

I bought that a couple of years ago and have been following in. I just wish I had a real person who could say things like, "square your hips", "don't discombobulate your shoulders", and "tilt your forehead 12 degrees" or whatever it is instructors would say to me ;)

 

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I've become terrible at updating this thing. Not that much has been happening.

 

Wednesday was really fun, I had a free running class where we focused entirely on getting comfortable with backward tumbling where we did a bunch of progressions for back tucks and back handsprings. It was all very difficult, my lack of jumping ability coupled with lack of spatial awareness makes for a bad combo for tumbling. :P But it was fun. Mostly it feels like it will take a very, VERY long time before I'll be able to stick anything. At this point it's all going too fast to even process what's happening. :/

 

Plus handstands in the morning, can't remember exactly what I did.

 

Thursday my trap was hurting and I was quite fatigued so I took a rest day. First of many.

Friday I skipped the office gym as I needed to buy coffee in the morning and got stuck at the roastery in the torrential downpour. There are worse places to get stuck. Didn't feel too bad considering my trap was still iffy. 

Saturday I was in a weird mood and went for a really, really long walk. Like 4 hours or so. Too many thoughts. In the evening I hung out with friends but I had a slight stomach ache and the weird mood continued so it wasn't the most fun. Still great to see them. 

Sunday was even worse and the stomach ache continued coupled with tiredness and even more strange mood. 

Monday (today) I finally did handstands again! I focused almost entirely on the kick up, trying to not rush it by only kicking up into a slightly scissored position. It actually really helped and my consistency was way higher and I don't think it was a complete fluke. It was very noticeable that the trickier part was to bring my legs together without moving my pelvis. I also noticed that when my shoulders get a little bit tired and I can't get quite all the way up I tend to compensate by swinging my top leg faster => more instability. But I realised that I can get that extra bit of power by bending my bottom leg a bit more instead and that seems a lot more stable. Though of course I'd rather just have stronger shoulders with more endurance. ;)  

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2 hours ago, GoodDoug said:

I bought that a couple of years ago and have been following in. I just wish I had a real person who could say things like, "square your hips", "don't discombobulate your shoulders", and "tilt your forehead 12 degrees" or whatever it is instructors would say to me ;)

You can always post here! :) We're not teachers but I'm sure we can collectively help.

Though be prepared that the advice you might get (from us or an IRL teacher for that matter) is to keep trying, consistency and frequency is everything.

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You didn't say it directly so I am going to assume that doing handstands on Monday is the thing that finally cleared up that stomach ache

 

8 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

trying to not rush it by only kicking up into a slightly scissored position.

Interestingly I have come to a similar conclusion recently. By trying to minimize leg swing to get into the handstand, I find it so much easier to find my balance point at the top. 

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On 9/2/2019 at 1:29 PM, Mad Hatter said:

If you mean a grander purpose in life, I got nothing, and I suspect that's one of the triggers. 

Sorry to drop a question like that and then not come back for over a week.. but no.. not necessarily grander purpose. But it's worth knowing what the things are that make life worthwhile. That's not quite the same as enjoyable- because for example doing handstands isn't all enjoyable right? but there is something about pursuing them that makes it worthwhile. And it's not just the destination, also the journey. 

 

On 9/4/2019 at 3:29 PM, Mad Hatter said:

Today I woke up early and for the first time in MONTHS I was excited to get out of bed rather than dreading the day. :) I went for a morning swim and it was windy and wavy and awesome and afterwards I realised that I was feeling not bad and it made me cry a little. I'm afraid to be too hopeful but maybe, just maybe things are finally turning?

And things like this. The thought that there will be morning swims in the future, with beautiful weather. Things worth fighting for. Even if fighting is just mostly holding on. 

 

But what you said about basically not having a choice, that resonates with me. That's always one of the main reasons I pick things back up and try to put them into a liveable shape. 

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On 9/10/2019 at 6:36 AM, WhiteGhost said:

You didn't say it directly so I am going to assume that doing handstands on Monday is the thing that finally cleared up that stomach ache

 

Interestingly I have come to a similar conclusion recently. By trying to minimize leg swing to get into the handstand, I find it so much easier to find my balance point at the top. 

That is the only logical conclusion one could draw from the experience.

 

Clearly the slower you get up the more control you'll have over the movement. However the tradeoff is that the slower you get up the more press like the movement becomes which makes it less efficient. There's definitely a balance there (no pun intended :P) I'm not sure if it was clear the the realisation was not that I needed to kick up with less power, it was whether the power should come from the bottom leg or the top leg.

 

On 9/10/2019 at 2:14 PM, KB Girl said:

Sorry to drop a question like that and then not come back for over a week.. but no.. not necessarily grander purpose. But it's worth knowing what the things are that make life worthwhile. That's not quite the same as enjoyable- because for example doing handstands isn't all enjoyable right? but there is something about pursuing them that makes it worthwhile. And it's not just the destination, also the journey. 

 

And things like this. The thought that there will be morning swims in the future, with beautiful weather. Things worth fighting for. Even if fighting is just mostly holding on. 

 

But what you said about basically not having a choice, that resonates with me. That's always one of the main reasons I pick things back up and try to put them into a liveable shape. 

I... don't know. I have plenty of things that I enjoy doing but that are not necessarily worthwhile. Handstands I do find enjoyable, most of the times, but is there a point to them? Not really. On my most nihilistic days I would say that it's all pointless. On good days I'm more focused on the things that are fun, and completely ignore the idea of purpose. I think part of the problem is that I don't feel I have a way to contribute to this world, however small, and I don't know what that way would be or how. It's for sure not through my work.

 

Holding on is an apt description for fighting. :D 

 

I can imagine that reason becomes a thousand times stronger when you have a family too! 

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Tuesday I had handstand class, as per usual. I got distracted by work before the class and ended up running late, and forced to take the bus to shave off a few minutes. Before the class started I was still thinking about the work thing as I didn't have enough time to context switch if you will. That's when I really appreciated my teacher's funky warm ups which require so much concentration you very quickly let go of whatever you were doing before. With more conventional warm ups I don't always get that and I might still be thinking about the work or life things while rotating my joints and swinging my legs or whatever. We did:

 

Warm up

  • Tennis ball on a string exercise 1: One person is kneeling on the floor, while the partner is swinging and circling and moving the ball around. The kneeling person's task is to track the ball with the palm of their hand facing up (to force rotations in the shoulders rather than the wrist)
  • Tennis ball on a string exercise 2: Similar to the first exercise, but this time the person lay on their back, tracking the ball with the sole of their foot.
  • One person starts in horse stance, while the partner continuously places small objects in front, to the sides and to the back of the first person. The first person's job is to circle their hand and/or the elbow around the objects, so they end up continuously lunging and piking and stretching the hip.
  • Plus a few more things I can't remember. :P 

Drills

  • Tightness drill against the wall where the partner was shaking and pushing your legs, shoulders, back, arms, etc.
  • 90 degree turns - Uggh. It was confusing, it felt like part of my body was left behind and then I needed to compensate by swinging around more and obviously lose balance. 
  • Deep, deep side bends against the wall, in a one leg bent straddle. It was SO frickin' heavy to get out of the bend, I had to fight for two reps per side. It'd be cool to be able to do them that deep free standing though. :) 

Wednesday morning I thought my shoulders would be too fried after class, but they were ok. Practiced lots of kick ups and they're getting significantly more consistent as long as 1) my shoulders are not fatigued, there's a noticeable difference between sets and even beginning and end reps, and 2) I don't lose concentration.

Then A come in and I managed to successfully say "hello" while upside down. :D It took a disturbing amount of focus.

 

I then took a long coffee break because I really needed to talk to him about the project as honestly I've been completely incapacitated when it's come to helping out. And while I feel much better overall, the anxiety towards writing (non work-related code) is not going away. Which has of course made me feel really guilty for not contributing and like I'm being an unhelpful, flaky asshole. I can't tell if this is only a phase, but for now I need to find other ways of contributing that don't feel like my job or chores.

 

After that long, candid conversation I went back to handstands to decompress. :P I arbitrarily decided to set a goal of doing 25 handstands, and was very surprised to learn how long it would take me and how tiring it was for the shoulders. And no it wasn't because my holds were so long. ;) They were between maybe 5-20 seconds, so say I spent 4 minutes in a solid handstand during the whole training session. No wonder it takes such a long time to learn!!

 

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2 hours ago, Elastigirl said:

Your class sounds so fun! 

Super happy to have found this place! Aaaaand it's super close to my house. :D 

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The problem with having two a day sessions is when you don't have a clue what the evening class will be on and you can't tell what body parts should be kept fresh. So you decide to do all the handstands in the morning, and the class theme of course turns out to be front handsprings. Hello shoulders! :o It went well, but I have this inkling tomorrow will be a shoulder babying day. Since I kept mainly to the stations with almost no people I ended up relentlessly drilling with very short rests, meaning my shoulders took quite a beating. 

 

I still don't have a clue what's happening most of the time, but it feels like front handsprings might be a thing I could potentially learn in this life time, as opposed to the other things we've been learning so far. Maaaaaaaybe?? :P At least it feels a lot less foreign as part of the skill is handstands, and the power comes from the shoulders and swinging the leg as opposed to jumping. How to hurdle into it eludes me, and it's not just the hurdle but that they insist on building these contraptions with mats and ramps and air tracks and each one requires a different run up and it's all very confusing as I can't break it up into static steps. What happens after the handstandy part also eludes me. But at least there's this small gap of something in between that I can sort of understand and I feel like I'm slightly more capable to even listen to cues, in last week's class I felt like I didn't have the awareness to apply any of them.

 

We spent 15 minutes at the end for the free running part, where we spent most of the time flowing around the obstacles. In one of the flows the rule was move however you want, but the order should be right hand, right leg, left leg, left hand, onto the back, onto the stomach. It was very hard to not turn it into exotic floor work with shoulder rolls and pole work. :lol:

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4 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

That's when I really appreciated my teacher's funky warm ups which require so much concentration you very quickly let go of whatever you were doing before.

Yea that's really brilliant :)

 

5 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

I think part of the problem is that I don't feel I have a way to contribute to this world, however small

I don't know, how small are we thinking? don't underestimate the positive influences you have on other peoples life. Before the internet people would find purpose in taking care of their loved ones and playing a role in small communities. I think you've got some of that going on. 

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17 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

Clearly the slower you get up the more control you'll have over the movement.

 

Your comment made me remember a video I saw a few days ago. Slow and in control!

 

handstand.gif.0ed19e0ee681c5b9821f91922e25f158.gif

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16 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

The problem with having two a day sessions is when you don't have a clue what the evening class will be on and you can't tell what body parts should be kept fresh.

Yeah, that would really bother me.  Or more specifically, it would cause me so much anxiety about being wiped out when I need that body part that I would totally end up skipping one or the other.

 

16 hours ago, Mad Hatter said:

I still don't have a clue what's happening most of the time, but it feels like front handsprings might be a thing I could potentially learn in this life time, as opposed to the other things we've been learning so far. Maaaaaaaybe??

It' like doing a back walkover in fast forward :P 

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9 hours ago, Tobbe said:

Your comment made me remember a video I saw a few days ago. Slow and in control!

Impressive. :) 

 

7 hours ago, WhiteGhost said:

Yeah, that would really bother me.  Or more specifically, it would cause me so much anxiety about being wiped out when I need that body part that I would totally end up skipping one or the other.

No time for anxiety because I want to do both. :D I just suck it up. ;) 

 

7 hours ago, WhiteGhost said:

It' like doing a back walkover in fast forward :P 

Ah I see. Of course. 

 

How do I do walkovers? :P 

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22 hours ago, KB Girl said:

I don't know, how small are we thinking? don't underestimate the positive influences you have on other peoples life. Before the internet people would find purpose in taking care of their loved ones and playing a role in small communities. I think you've got some of that going on. 

Hmm maybe occasionally. By accident. :P 

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I was not wrong in my prediction - my upper back and shoulders and arms are quite sore indeed. :) I ended up with a total rest day. In the evening I went out for a beer with a friend to plan A's bachelor party. I think it will be great! We also learnt that when making the guest list for a bachelor party it's a good idea to check who's invited to the wedding before sending the invite. Oh well. :lol: 

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Friday I went to the gym but mostly for the habit as my elbows were really sore from the front handsprings. Pushing off hyper extended elbows on squishy surfaces over and over and over again is not something they're conditioned for it turns out.

I did a few warm up mobility things and squats and that's it. I wanted to do something similar as my handstand warm ups, but since I don't have a partner I came up with this exercise where I put my palms down on a desk or on the floor and moved in as many ways as possible for one whole song while keeping the hands in the same spot. I really enjoyed it, especially the hands on the floor variation on the slippery floor as I could slide around. :) 

 

After work I played Civ VI until some embarrassing stupid time because my colleague and I had been talking about the game in the morning and the conversation planted a seed that got stuck and that was the only way to get it unstuck.

 

Saturday I regretted playing all night. :P I did very little and my elbows still hurt. In the evening I went to my friend's goodbye dinner, which sucked. Not only will I miss him, but he was also the glue of the group and it's not going to be the same anymore. Without climbing and without him suddenly I have no social life to speak of and it's making me a little sad and pondering how fragile friendships are as an adult...

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I made a challenge!

I want to keep this as a handstand log and I feel it's getting too cluttered with other stuff so I'm going to see if I can have both.

 

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Wow. That's quite the suggestive thumbnail for that video there!

 

Impressive performance indeed. Love the theme of it :)  

 

Made me think of the band Alien Vampires

 

 

 

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4 minutes ago, Tobbe said:

Wow. That's quite the suggestive thumbnail for that video there!

Uhmm right maybe I should've NSFW tagged it. If you've been doing pole you kinda forget that other people's IG feed doesn't consist 80% of butts. :lol:

 

Oh man that music is NOT my cuppa tea!

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