THE

10:

YORK
Course N'o. 2

HANDBALANCING

the!'" are a numoer- of other handstand. 1;hat rill t_ast 70ur p!'oficlonoy. !f 7011 have followed COUl"M#1 o01r<:>fl1117 then the following ~tunh '1'111 not only be easy but will &dd a lot of, fun to your balancing seaaion. The 'Chair-stand' is one such .tunt and is an old favorite Tilth profass lanaI performers. Use an o"dlnar;r kit chen ohair bilt make certein that 1t 19 strong and has a ver:r sturdy back. Place one hand a,,01.ind the front edge of tha chai" and thA othe" un t0l-' of "he Oha:!.r baek (see Fig. l, Page 2.). Le&n well forwEU'd and wlth a sl.1ght jump dro.w IlJe legs up c Loae ,t'o the body and from this poslt10n press up into yOUl' handstand. You l!,Hlf1nd that you have unusuaj powal' and cont""l 1n is grasping the beek of tbe cheir end many eqllil1brl9t. say that thaba_lo.nce is much easier than the regular prea •• up but that it takes more ner-ve , yOUl' head be,ill!!; some forty C1' fifty inches 11'0"' the 1'100".

BEFORE GOING

INTO

the

"M hand bd"noao

the aI'm that

Late!' you should try aOme b0.101no." On high par,al101 bara ~ o"der to accuatom ycu1'self to balances on high objects. I he. ve seen JllSny a good man fail to uecute a ba Ianc e on some high object, although on the ground he was excellent, merely because of fright of tllahigh place 01' simply lack of nOl've. To relate a humerous incident; not 80 long ago ona of our tea,", an expert ba'l.ancen In the gym, ""., coaxed to attempt his hand3tand on the end of the sprlng·board at OUI' swimming pool with all hi3 clothc~ on ••• ne fell in, 7et the balo.nce to him was 80 abaurdly s1mple but the hazard of the water below

(Pase 1.)

_ hAAi,-4p

Unn!'rved him t~t ;heimpr'1perlY.I?"rform!,d jj;ls p,,:lsnce. . Then I h!<v.~ 'seen"a~era$e.l;!.l!JBl1:~"rs.':P_~rfo~ at great heigh:!:& doing tli!ng~ really danger,oUII .without· the ~l1ghteat fif~. -110".8O'er" '.ne"~e may serve build' ir.o.¢' Jij'ip' you,';,,11
_,,:,,,'

arid I;!merg'enB'l"

a 'good ,v_srIal;40il' of.,th"p're,.-s .. up - 1'"", ".01:\to;-1>"" at" this, st,\ge .•. Spread your _t~_e.",~ab,out" r«~t" to fUty .jJ:I~h_"~ !\-pi1l'._t- '<'o;i"l?e,nd,thg

THE STRADDlE HANDSTAND-is

_:n~~on~~~~;I<>-:;4;~;~~!i~~lY .
between tht.t .reet, a.nd "abou!':' _e·l;toulderwldth apart (Fig, 2). Lean well forward, the thIghs against the insides Of til<l-up. pe,. aI'll1S and :lIft the feet off the 1'1001'. Without bending the knees but moO"1rlg ·ant 11'ely from the hips, ratse the lege overhead. Complete the balance by bringing the feet together •.

LEAN WELL
FORWARD

(Page 2.)

','

THE NEXT BALANGE you should learn is the 'stiff-legged lever-up' with arms,bent. This 1s a tol,lSh,one but should be thoroughly mastered' because of its Q.*c~ll"nt strength buHdlng qualities.
as 010s6 to the hands as you ean without,"i;i,~nd1ng the knees (see Fig. 3A, Page 4). Lean very i'ar,,'forwlU'dallowing the elbows to bend until feet. come ott'-th8 floor (F1g. BB, sol1d 11nell). The ra.1s1ng of ~he legs takes plaoe entirely i'rom the h1ps (Fig. 3B, dotted lme's on Page 4 sho .. legs partly raised) and the legs remain straight during the entire movement. Whenthe legs are overhead (Fig. 30) the arms are straightened out as 1n the regU1~ pI'ess-up to hand~tand. This 1s a beautiful stunt '11i.~n performed IImoothly and slowly; incidently. the e'loWllr you do it the harder it is. Whenyou have mastered this ~t~t, you are ready for the 'stiff-Arm-Stiff-Legged-Leverand 'bring the fest

l'I,aoc the hands on the floor

abciut liboulder

width apar-t

'Up.

YOU WON'T FINO MANY chaps who can,do this lever-up. It takes plenty of strength and flexibility. The starting position for the stiff-s~'lititr-legged 111 shown on Page 5, Fig. 4A. Lean well forward, keep the elbows stra.ight at all times and bring ,the feet aa c Loae to the hands as possible w1thout bending the knee8. The closer you can get ,your f,aet to your hands the easier the stuht. Keep leaning torward until tr.e feet leave the floor (as indicated by the solid lines 'in Fig. 4B, Page 5) and continue to rsise the l,egs (Fig. 4Bt dotted lines) from the hipe only. As your feet come into the v9:roticsl position (Fig. 40) you will have to draw your shouldeI's and head back (that is; come back i'rom tho olttreme forward poll1tlon) untll the complete handstand has been seoured. You muat have perfect control throughoUt the ,mt1re movement. ~Should you not1ce undue strain on the wrists then try this stunt 1."01' a time on the floor-bars. You will learn the control quite well this way but you are not 'considered accomplished until you can pe.rform it on the t100r. An interesting exerCise, one that will give you IItrongtll md co-ordinat1on, 1s to endeavor to stop Brld maintain a baiance at anyone of the positions between the t160r (star't,ing position) and the finished handstand.

(Page 3.)

.:'"
.... ",.01',

,

i"

,1

I

,

"'Pigi'~"~

-,;1

''T~ "STlPF-LEG LEVER.u~"

.,
\
'."~U~_J-'_"-' ..... \

.-._...

:_"'_""

j
/

t

;.-.\~-'~~"_~-'J",:ll;"
FJG.3""

-l~~_l~=:__"FI:G ~---;;;FiG:-;3C~i _ ~3BIL_-~l
,I

~

..'
THE "STJPF-ARM

~l;Y~S:-,
STIFF leGGED

LEVER U~"

'I

FIG llA

FIG 4B

AG.4C

,,

AN INTERESTING STUNT is the 'Rook-up' to handstand. If you have mastered the movements of the preceding o.ourseyou will find this very simple but, in spite of its Simplicity, it is a graoeful handstand when properly executed.
Lie prone (face down) on the floor, plaoe the hands a few inches below the Pectorel musoles and from this position press the arms out straight keeping the lower part of the body, from the hips to the feet, flat on the floor as shown in Fig. SA on Page 7. Hold ~he head well back. From this position anap the head for'ne,rd and downward at the same time rocking the curved chest on the floor and raising the legs (Fig. 5B solid lines). When the lega,reach the posit1.on shown by the dotted lines arrest the rocking motion and continue to press up intI' the complet~d handstand. The legs should be kept as straight as possible throughout the entire movement but while learning you may have to bend the knees slightly. (About the amourrt anown in the diagr~ on Page 7). There is a little secret to this stunt; quickly flexing the thigh muac Les causes the legs to 'bounce' orr the floor. THE 'ROCK-UP' 19 a good prel1minar'J to the more difficult 'Prone-up' or 'Holl'ow-bac:( sa-up! • Pre The 'Prone-1.:p' performeQ by, first, lying prone (face 1s down) on the floor and plac1ng the hands on the floor in line with the hips. (About six inches farther back than the position shown in Fig. 5A on Page 7). The legs are then raised by arching the back but the chest remains on the floor. By sheer strength you continue arChing and raising the legs until they are high enough to permit the chest to be pressed free of the floor. Froll! thiB position you press up as you would in the regula~ press up. In the 'Prone-up' it is difficult to show just how much arch 1s required and the exact position to place the hands as each handbalancar is conatructed anatomically different, but should you master the 'Prone-up' you may well consider yourself an expert balancer.
(Pig. SB) press up into the vertical position (F~.
60)

(Page 6.)

far:. t: <I' THe "ROCK-UP" TO

HA,"DSTAND

-""

- ....

FlG.S}.

FlG.5B

FfG.5C

. ~'_.ms.k1I:ig yOUl' lOne-Handstand! easler. 'llggest that you practiae a few 'iiantlst,Bllds y kioklng up both- feet b f::t th!l"same.time. Start as you '':Would,_tbe regular' 'Preu-up' but -:~il.th ;1!he feet much farther any ;~from the. hands. Lean well forward tand spring up with both feet at >j;he aame time. Whenyou master the 'Hand-on-Hand' 'you'1I'11lbe able to balance on :P05,t8 or aingle objects of leas -than':aix inohes diameter if need be - or on your partner's head if , you~ bave a team. Place one. hand on the floor, -the-other on top of it, lapping 'Qver in order to get as much area of' the hands on the £1001' a8:;~poSs ible as shown in F1g. 6, lean well forward afid k1ck up tQ;'-thevertical position. You 11'111 .have to hit your balance at Ol,I!;lIaalateral stability 1s dtl'fioult. Have the ringers spread wel.l apart. balance being maintained by their pressure.

, "THE HAND-ON-HAND" balance 1s ~Ei:llt a.rid if you learn this it will-go a long way toFirst.
I

FIG b

Once you bav.e done it well by kick.1ngup practioe by kicking iip both feet together as msntione'~ at the top of this page. By spring1ng up ..ith_ both feet together youbave less ehanee of falling to either side. The more flexible yoUr s.hoUlders the aaa ier th is bal.ance.

"TIGER.BENDS" have always been the handbalancer's strength test just as chinning and dipping are to the gymnast. Tiger-bends take a combina~ tion of strength and co-ordination. I have seen many good handbalanoers do 6 repetition Tiger-bends and there ~re a few that do from 10 to 12 while the record, to the best of my knowledge. 1s 171

(page 8.)

PLACE l'HE FOREARMS oil. the floor and kick-up into "the fONe..i'!"-ij,tand'!ls ehown_in_ Fig~ 'lit., on Page 10. Allow th!3 legs to'tiver1;l_BJarrOl!to s:.rchant il,xtent that very little ws_ight1s felt o!,!;1ihe,,H'J;tl'ow-s-.·(Examine Fig. 7Bon Page 10). Note the- emrllllle depth-ot t'be arch which is ne-oe,Beary to- relieve the eloows oi'c,bodyweigbt,. As soon as the o'lt-..:roba;J_Elnn,e been acoclllPl:1'shed qui'ckly baa rock the ent1re bod! forward (_Fig.'7C,._ s(lllid.:l1nes to position '7C. dott"ed lines) until the t'ore;arm,s aNI- neErrly vel'tical and the b.ogj rln much the same position as_it wO,uld b'e when nearing the completion of thereg'ul"r -prss'e-up 'fumdstand. Che§k-t~e fOI'W"rd motion of the body "nd conmmnoe to press UP,"! shown in Fig. '7D.
After you haye Buccessfully- made the oomplsted hruadstand drop Clown 'to the t'orearm stand again. This 18 relatively eaay but #<~-e OBl't... 1n 70,= elbows assume the s ame po_sU10n_ (in l'ela t ion to the dis tanoe between thee 1bo" a ) then' try a seoond T1ger-bend. Here are a few pointe'rs to remember; do, 'not a_ll ....-the, arms to De flexed (bent) too much. The angle 'between the upper arID -and the_ forearm shculd be as near as poss ible to the "Illouh__t hown in Fig. '7B. s If it 1s flexed too -lIJIloh you will encounter d1f:f1eu1t:r in the press-up. Rock forWard until the for~arms Bre nearly perpapdiculal' to the £100..- (F~g. '70, dot1:"d lin03) 1n or dol' to pl'BSS up quiokly and with the least eXpendIture of strength. This 1s the secret of high rapetit1011 Tiger-bends. If you rock forward and at the same time allow too muoh bend at the elbows tps ehance a are that :rour ohin w111 come in conteot with the floor. It. var,ia,tion o_r the Tiger-bal)d which 1s rather Simple is to per form' i. t between two chs1rs or' bencbe e , This perm1t the head and shoulders to drop below the level of the hands and does not r-equaz-e such a -deep ar-ch ,
9

THE "PLANCHE" 11,1a handstand inasmuch as you are balancing your body on YOllr hands. The straight aM! planche is very very difficult snd few balancers ever accomplish it eorrectly. Those whom I have seen do t.h18 feat have had powerful upper bodies and l1ght legs. It is bard to say whe,ther thay got tbe_ir development from doing the planche or that they could do the pla,nche because of their unique bUild, neveI'theless it is a wonile--:rful strengt'h developer ,requiring te'rrifie shoulder power.

(page 9.)

PIII9U 10 TH.E "TIGER-8 END"

FIG 71>0.

FIG K

'. FIG 18

FIG 7D

YOUR FIRST ATTEMPT at the planche should be performed on the floor-bara with elbows bent. You will find thet you can do a semblance of' a p'l.an che wIth the f100r- bars . quite close together and by' fore ing the elbows tightly aga1nst the sides. This, of course, is not a true p.l.anchein any sense of the word, but"; 1t '11111 atrengthen the necessary muscles 1n the lumbar region of the back and the shouJ.dera. I suggesb pract LeinS 'II 1th an exagge:r<ated areh then gradually r-educIng the arch until the body 1s straight and horizontal to the floor. The amoun L o!' "1'01, most "uHable for a beginner 1a shown in Fig. 8.

FIG.8
You may. at
yO"l.U'-

but as .your strength increases'you need less and less. As you progress try to depend less on the support offered by the elbows and wit·h each succeeding attempt straighten the elbows more. I believe a barbell trained man can learn the planche quickly a9 he will have the requIred strength and this stunt takes more strength than an:)' other. To do the planche floor as shown Fig. 9, the from the

elbows

ttrst find you have to bend
mor-e thBn t.:Oe amount snown

FIG.9
hands must be extremely flexible. It 1s almost impossible 1:0 keep the pa Lma flat ----"' .... -"'---on the floor in thIs planohe. You lill1 find you have to depend" gr-ea deal t on finger stre~gth. I have seen a cr~p perform a very

(Page 11.)

boiaut Uul planche on his fist s after he discovered he cpuldnbt do it with hanos flat on the floor,; it takes rnorebalancs in this manner but it is worth !l, try.

IF YOU CAN 0'0 the prone-up or hollow-back press-up as described on Psge 7 of this Second Course you have 8. good chance of' accomplishing toe preaS-up from planche to handstand. Perform your planche as s:::'ownin Fig. 8 (Page 11) us ing the floorbar-s , and w Hhou t addi ti anal bending of the arms, ·force the legs as high as poas tb t.e and at the same time lean forward and .downwar-d to counterbalanc.e the legs. When 'Y9ur legs have passed the half-wey mark (ebcut a 45 de_graa arigle) you ano ukd have no diff iaulty acmplet irig "he handstand.
Dropp ing :tram the bands taml into the planehe i5 !i nea maneuver and is exce l.Ieu t for toil t tng your control, com.a down slowly leaning well forws:rd to pr-event the feet fr~"i:t drop pine; too rapidly. If you have the strength you can do H.
t

will

A FEW VARIATIONS of the hands band m.ake you, in time, a far be.tter balanc,er. It is a go od Ld.e a to stuQ_y Lll" rout in" of the next, l:and-balanc lng team you 5,86 and pay particular attention tc variation he or they may offer.

As !III example of an interesting variation I saw some y,aars ego; the balanaer placed an 0r'dinery kitohen ahair on tbe tops ~f four beer b ctrt Le.. , s A string was fastened to bne two diagonally cppo s ing each cbhe r , The performer pressed-up neatly into a chalr handstand, (Shown on Page 2, Fig. 1). When' he had sa cured his balanoe an as 9 is·tant quickly pull e d one of the be.er batt Le s away thus leaving the chair balanced on only three bottles. After a bit'}f a f10uri.6h, the .assistant pulled the: other b.ott1e away leaving the chair supported on two bottles. He received ·terrific applause for this variation of t ha s i.mple abair s tend. Once be had his ba Lanee it mat tered little whether he had two, three or four bottles under the legs.
.1' in;g<l-a r

I recall ano ther pe r former who d 1d a handstand wi th his p'La'c e d On ten-p 1n3. In othor word. ho W<l ~ bolsnc ing only on his flnger tips. This in Lt se If is diff lcu1 t enough unle s s you are POS!! ea sed of extremely strong fingers, butthls bal&ncer lifted hls fingers, one ata .fim€, off each pin, lmockihg them dovm in the proce ss , until he was balancing only on his thumbs! To the best

(Page 12.)

ot my knowledge only two haridbalancers have suooeeded in doing this incredible stunt. I have seen many -per-f'or-megIve variations of the r-s handstand on rolling objects such as: wheels, balle, roller skates and even ice skates, however, 'each or these stunbs were specialties of that particular performer and designed to create a "pentacle. '1'f you have mastered the kick-up, the pre.ss-up and several of the variants of these, you can, 1n a very short time, learn many of these profe'seIonaL balance s. If you have a f.la're for originality you can create new ones yourself, otherlvise. copy tne best or souie of your favorite pI'Ofe9910na1 performers.

THE "ONE·HAND-ST

AND"

BEFORE WE GO INTO one hand balancing I would like to touch on some beneficial exercises that will aid you in your work. If you are fortunate enough to possess a set of adjustable dumbells or a barbell and have used elther c'onecientiously the chances are you will be strong enough for any of the balancing stunts I have outlined in this course.

You should do plenty of repetition military presses both with your barbell and a pair of ~eavy dumbe1ls. I believe, however, that heavy dumbells are more beneficial to handbalancers because of their difficulty of control in the overhead l1:fts. A man who is good at handling heavy dumbells in the overhead exercises generally makas a better balancer. When you get into I hand-to-hand' work you will find that about eight presses with a pair of 75 pound dumbel1s is the equivalent of a routine with a 150 pound topmounter. Floor dipping· is an excellellt l'ree-rumd exe""lse but is fa.r more effective it some weight, such as a barbell plate, ia placed acrOBS the back. As mentioned previously, strong wrists are a requisite of the handbalancer and every effort should be made to increase their strength. Wrist strength can be 1ncreased by use of the York Wrist Developer; a device that winds up a weight on a roiler handle.

(Page 13.)

FOR EVERY 100 PERSONS who can perform a perfect handst-and there 1s but one who can do a perfect one hand standi I don't wish to seem overly pessimistic about this but from my expar Ierice it takes about one year to leaPn the one hand stand correctly. Of co~se' thene will be many of you to whom balancing comes easy and you will achieve some sort of a one hand stand after only a feYI month!! practice. The one hand stand is the mark of the finished balancer and when you can do it gracefully and with complete confidence you are one of the chosen few. The accepted method of learning the one hand stand is to go uP. either press or kick, into your regular hendstand and gradually lean over to one slde until the opposite hand is not supporting any weight and can be lifted from the floor. It sounds simple enough. The single hand on which you wish to balance must be chosen by triale.nd error. Since most of us are righthanded we Rill in all probability choose the right hand, however, by all maans try some balances using the left band. For a right-handed person the muscles on the left side of the body are stronger than those on the rightl The muscles on the left side of the body do the work the right hand -imposes. By thBt I mean: when you lift some heavy object w1th your right hand the muscles involved other than those of the right forearm are on the left side of the body. So you Illay find that you have far better balancing control by trying a one hand stand with the left band, however, I only suggest this during the early stages of your prsctice, it will not take long to find whieh hand will serve you better.

THERE ARE TWO DIAGRAMS showing 'the position to fltrive for :l'n learning the one hand stand !~1g. lOA and lOB, Page 15), pay particular attention to the front and side view. Notice that the balanoer 'Cl!)eSn1tust lean to one side but more or less in the j .direction of the little finger of the hand on tbe floor. ;Thia direction is illustrated in Fig. 11. You w111 note that I said "more or less" f-or, like many otber inst,~nces. I Mn' t tell you the exac tangle !nvo 1 ved,due to the many differences 1n height and physique but if you .kesp in mind the general direction in which to lean you I'f~~;l. accomplish the one hand stand liluch more rapidly. '(ffpther thing; a time element must be taken into cons~deration and you should be able to bold a regular handstand for longer than 30 seconds before trying the one
blinder.

(Page 14.)

FIG.tOA

The above rlgures, lOA and lOB show the ultimate position in the one·hand stand you should strive ror. The rree hand may be placed either on the hlp or along the .lde, hOlfever, 1n the early stages of learn1ng the one hander you use the free hand as an aid to balance. Se. Fig. 12C and D, Page 17.

Lean thIs di;peotion

FIG.II

LET US TAKE a st ep by step ane.lysis o.fthe orthodox nwthod of learning the one hand stand. First: go up into your regular bandstand (I suggest tbat you use the 'kiok-up' .inorder to conserve energy) and securely lock the elbow of the arm to be used in the balance. (See Fig. l2A, Page 17). Now slowly and keeping complete control of your balance lean your weight over to the locked avm (Fig. 12B. Page 17) at the same time deepening the arch so that the feet move in the d1rElction shown in Fig. lIon PagEl 15. As you continue to lean in that direction you will have less and leas weigh,t on the opposite hand. Keep leaning until you can maintain a balance with only the finger-tips resting on the floor (Fig. l2C) ther ever so carefully. 11ft the fingers free of the floor (Fig. l2D). Your initial try JfJB.y net you a one hand ba Lar.c of only a few seconds or e only a fraction of the ent.1xe length, of time taken for t he movement (about 15 aec onda in most cases) but with each, successive try you will r~qulre leas time 1n sPirtlng your weight to the one hand and the result will be a far longer one hand stand.
ONE FAULT most beginners have when learning the one hand stand is; af.ter carefully leaning to the one side and getting to the point where only the finger-tips touch the floor - they are in too much of a hurry to lift the entire arm. When you lift the free arm quickly you cannot compensate fast enough, for the sudden change in the center of gravity and as a result - you faU to complete the one handel'. Taking th,eproper time and care in lifting the free arm from the floor is the most important phase of the one hand standi

During your early stages of learning use your free arm as a counterbalance and move it out to the S ide very oarefully (Fig. l2D. Page 1'7) for you will find this extended arm an aid in maintaining a balance, however, when placed on the hip as in an expert one hand stand (Fig. lOA, Page 15) it is of no value as a counterbalanoe. When you have reached the stage of performing a balance ss illustrated in Fig. lOA 70U maintain your equilibrium with,finger-tip pressure just as you do in the regular bandstand. The above description explains the usual method of learning th,e one handel' but I am going to give you a few suggestions that will speed up your progress.

(Page 16.)

r'He-®Nt~ANK~iA~D(Rc;~r!lr ·

..~

p"1~,~U~r~~

...

'-

...
. I~, :..

ary wooden. soap or canned goods twalve inches high and plMe on up. Place the te.vored hll,nd On box wlt.h forearm resting In the

GET A SOX sucri as an ordlnM box, wfth Bida", about

the floor with open p;u.t the inside 'bottom of the cornet>. (Fig. 13.).

FIG.13

PLace the other hand 00 the oppoal te a lde ot the box and kickMUP or pres a-up into!!. handstand. (This baLance wl11 otfer no diffi~ul to' if you baV() mastered thoi ehair handM stand mentioned on Page 2 of this Se eond Course) _ Your elbow or· slightly below your e'lbow should now be wedged tightly in the cor-nsr- of the
bO.T.

.~

t.

tlon of the cine hand stand . until you can let go of the side of the bolt with the other hand. Since your balancing arm is supported on two sides by the box you have onLy one direction 1n which to contl'ol your bale:nce.
The use of .. b.oJ< "5 de .Cr fbad. w111 permit you to b&lance longer and you w~ll b6tte~be able to study the amount of arch required to balance .,·ith .. steady pne e ece-e on your :r·in·_· ger-tips. The length of t;i'ma' required to learn the one haild-· ershould be cut in haH by this method.

Ina.,

O""!'

in the

dl",,".,,_

will prevent fall1ng. 1n the One handel'. as in ~~" r;egular, tiher-e La little or no control in tbil he.e'L of tful . l:and. Onoe you rock back on the heel of the ·haJjd y.O\1 are· 'Wlde.l'bahncad' • In the l'eglilar handstand thl~ :.,l(s·~Qr'::
teccted

a oonu bemt,

pr-e aeur-e

of' tho

t'1.n.gel"'-tipc.

The same rule holds go.od, tol' the one hand stand &s t:J;\e ... l'egular handabandj yousho\4d Lean over just flU" enougli t.oat
ngo.lnet; th'b ff:/c(or

stand

thi"

by ~lightly

is pr-act icaJ.ly :.mpos9 ibla

bending

t:beelboiV~

for

but

the noy~ee.

ir,

t.1f<;i'";O,ri,,l! !li>~

(Page 18.)

THE ONE HANDER will come to you suddenly. It will oome at such a time when you can always lean in the direction that add'itional leaning can be counteracted by finger-tip p,ressure alone'. Of oourae, the amount of leeway in the one handstand is about ten times le~s than that of th~ r®gular handstand nevertheless, when you can feel the, ever 'So slight 'Overbalanoe' and have sufficient finger strength to counteract 1t - you have mastered the one handstand. Another good sUggestion is to practice a few one handel'S holding a ligbt dunibell in the other hand. Th,ie will act as an excelle,nt counterweight and will g'reatly simplify you,r control. You will notic,; fl'om the dlagl'~ that the legs lU'e always shown held together. 1 have always maintained tha,t it is far better to learn this way than by holding the legs apart and trying to gain additional control by waving the feet' about in the air a a I have seen many balancer-a do. Whenrour legs are apart and moving yo_u_ara continually altering the center of gravity snd it win take far longer to Le ar-n a balance perfectly a~thougb early success may .ene our-age you to try this method. Please don't do it; keep your legs togetller then you w:111 always know where they are.

THE "ONE HAND PLANCHE"; for the benefit of the advsnced equilibrlst I will touoh brieflyon the one hand planche, the most difficult ,feet in himdbslancing. The men who can do the planche with straight arm can be counted on the fingers of one handl Eowever, t~ planohe with the arm bent and resting agsinst the side is relatively simple. First, try' the bent arm pl.anche on your flo·or-bar, as shown in Fig. 14, Page 20. You wl11 notice that you need a slight twist to your body and the elbow is plaoed more agalnst the abdomenthan against the side. The real secret is to have a at r-ong arch for your IOlVerback muscles get a good workout when you try this. The opposi te are should be 'ext ended as a count er b'alance. Whenpl'll.oticing this bent arm planche on the floo:!' extreme flexIbility of the wrists is required. Keep the elbow as far down the abdomen as possible. This stunt can be performed easily ,..hen holding a dumbell in the extended band.

(Page 19.)

FIG 14

THERE HAS BEEN a number of' men who have pressed-up into the one h~~d stand from the position shown In Fig .• 14, and anyone accomplishing thIs f'eat 1s oonsidere.d very extraordinary. I have had the plo .. "ure of' see Ing it done a number of t irue a but the mell who did it always employed a Blight kick with th~lr legs in order to start the one h~nd prese-up WhiCh 1~ bhe most dlft'ioa;Lt part of the feet. The legs are ":lent then kicked upw.. rds which frees ths body mdrnentarilT from the elbow and the balancer forces hie baok into a deep arch, keeps his f~et as high a9 pOSSible, and presses. Should you ever accomplish this $tunt you may well be ~oud of your arm st ..ength end balancing ability.
To be able to low.r yourself from the one hand stand to the planohe that I have Ju.t described h a beautiful p1""e of co- ordSn" t 1.~" Qnd control. 'I'he secret is not, to oome down into tha planohe too quickly 'but by strel)gth of arm ret ....d your downward drop and at the "~ time mtlntain complete control of Tour bs Lanc e , You. mua.t lean in t!i£, direction of your head and ahou:.dera and tll'is,t to tu side ~t the. a_e time.

THE PLANCHE with arm atralght. as I previously ment ioned, i. the lIlOs't <lift' feat in balancing. In my l.1fet1m .. I :~aye ae"n1n,;t' on·".'''.'.' man perform it with hand on the ·floor. I ,do b.llev~. however, that a number of equ1l1brists hlive suce.eeiI~'~:9.(1' the floor-bar or a .•msll pedeatal. (See Fig. 15, Page.

1m'>

21).

._',

(Page

20.)

THERE ARE TWO METHODS of performing the straight arm planche as shown in' Fig. 15. The usual way is to place the hand on the floor-bar and lean over into, as near as poas fbja , the finisb6d position then do a slight kick-up into the balance. It is n~cessary to kick past the finished poa LtLcn as shown then lowsr down into it. The other me·thod is to execute your one hand stand and slowly drop into the position. This latter method requires terrific strength. One balancer I know of who does this p'l.ancbeon a small pedests.l practice.d by holding a we l.ght in the opposite hand snd gradually kept reducing the poundage used until he no longer required any. If you have reached the point where you c~n mantain a one bander for over ten seconds you might try the very tifficult stunt of hopping on one hand. }Jostbalancers I ·bave seen.who can hop on one hand use their feet; by overbalanalng and just as you are about to.fall kick-with the feet.and lift the hand from the floor.

FIG. IS
It is possible to hop. Some performers can hop as far as twenty feet taking about forty hopsl If you succeed in hopping on one band you might be able to do the one arm tiger-bend. Do the :"orearm stand using only one arm end eo-ordinate your kick without l1rting your elbow from the floor.
THE
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END

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