Can heavier people do handstands?

If there’s ONE question I get asked all the time by folks, it is this – can heavier folks do handstands – and handstand pushups?

Being that the handstand – and handstand pushup is by far one of the most difficult and intimidating exercises out there (though it doesn’t have to be!), most people naturally shy away from them to begin with – and if they’re on the heavier side?

Forget about it. You’ll likely have an easier convincing a man even “somewhat heavy” to jump off the Eiffel Tower with arms outstretched like a bird, pretending to fly, fly, FLY – as opposed to even get into a handstand.

Ok, so that above bit is a tad bit exaggerated, but hey,what’s true is this – it’s a COMMON fallacy out there that heavier folks can’t do handstands.

Can’t they?

You bet they CAN! I’ve said this all along, and have been saying it for years now, and it bears mentioning yet again at this point.

First off, the handstand and handstand pushup is your go to exercise if you’re looking for them shoulders like cannons – or, much as I hate to use the term, “cannonball delts”.

If you’re looking for raw, BRUTE, unadulterated upper body strength and pressing (and pulling, too) power – then this is the exercise you need to work upon – and perfect.

If you’re looking for that massive barrel chest look capped off by traps that look like mountain peaks – well – ditto!

The old time strongmen knew this too, my friend, and trained the exercise accordingly – – which means HARD, HARD, HARD!

And despite what you think, not all of them were “chiseled” either. They were strong, but not necessarily the “chiseled six pack” sort – and they didn’t need to be.

Ever heard of John Davis – champion American weightlifter with Olympic and world titles galore?

At a bodyweight of 200 lbs – – he’d do this exercise for multiple sets – in slow, perfect sets of 10 each time!

Doug Hepburn, weighing at a massive 305 lbs of MUSCLE did these all the time – – and sometimes on pommel bars at that!!

Ditto for Bert Asserati – the English wrestler that weighed in at a similarly meaty 240 lbs or so – – and did ONE ARM handstands for time!

And lest you think these men were exceptionally genetically gifted, think again. Doug Hepburn was born with a club foot and had many other battles to wage to get to the point he eventually did.

John Davis was small and weak as a child – hardly someone you’d expect to become a champion weightlifter – and yet that is precisely what he became!

Still not convinced?

Well, here’s another example.

Back in the day, yours truly was somewhat on the heavier side as well (as y’all no doubt know by now!).

He wrote a little book called Fast and Furious Fitness – – a book he referred to this morning – – and a book very close to his heart indeed – – and he very recently re-released it on THIS site again after years.

That was my first book, and as I said this morning, there is good reason for it to be close to my heart – – and in case you’re interested, here is where you can grab this lil’ puppy – –

At the time of writing that book, I wasn’t exactly in the sort of shape you see me today (though granted, I still trained and wasn’t by any means or shape a couch potato).

And what was my favorite exercise at the time?

It wasn’t pull-ups, although I did those. It wasn’t sprints. It wasn’t even pushups as I detail in 0 Excuses Fitness, although YES, I did do those too!

No – it was an exercise that is pictured on the front cover of the book – the handstand pushup – – and if I could do ’em at the bodyweight I did ’em – – and if the men mentioned above could do ’em for sets/reps at their bodyweights – then so can YOU, my friend!

And thats a long answer to a short question.

Long story short – – heck yes, you CAN do handstands and handstand pushups even if you’re overweight – or on the “bigger” side.

That isn’t an excuse to be fat. It’s a REASON NOT to shy away from this excellent exercise – and to learn how to do it in proper form – and then just do it!

Alright, my friend. That’s it for now. I’ll be back later!


Rahul Mookerjee

P.S. – Learn how to do handstands and handstand pushups the RIGHT way here – –

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