Handstand Split


The Handstand Split is an advanced yoga pose that combines elements of a handstand and a split. In this pose, you balance on your hands with your legs extended wide apart in a split position, creating a V-shaped or scissor-like shape with your legs. It requires a strong upper body, core stability, and considerable flexibility in the hips and hamstrings. Performing a Handstand Split requires practice and often starts with mastering both the handstand and splits individually before combining them into this challenging but impressive yoga pose.

Pose Detail

Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1
Lift into a handstand position, engaging your core and keeping your legs straight and together.
Step 2
Begin to slowly move your legs in opposite directions, gradually reaching your maximum split position.
Step 3
Find your balance and alignment in the Handstand Split. Your hands should be firmly grounded, and your gaze should be focused.
Step 4
Hold the Handstand Split for a few breaths, trying to maintain balance and stability.
Step 5
To exit the pose, bring your legs together and return to a handstand position.
Step 6
Slowly lower down with control, and come out of the handstand safely.

Benefits and Contraindications


Strengthens Core Muscles

Enhances Upper Body Strength

Improves Balance and Focus

Boosts Flexibility

Increases Body Awareness

Enhances Blood Circulation

Boost Self-Confidence and Cultivate a Sense of Courage

Reduces Stress and Anxiety


High Blood Pressure

Neck or Spinal Issues

Shoulder Injuries or Instability

Wrist Injuries or Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Glaucoma, Detached Retina, or Other Eye Conditions

Medical condition or physical limitation that could be exacerbated by inversions or splits.

Age-related factors, such as reduced bone density and balance.

Useful Tips For Practitioners

  • Build a Strong Foundation: Develop core strength, shoulder strength, and wrist strength through regular yoga and strength-building exercises.
    Ensure your handstand is solid before attempting the Handstand Split.
  • Warm-Up Thoroughly: Perform a comprehensive warm-up to prepare your muscles and joints, paying particular attention to your wrists, shoulders, hips, and hamstrings.
  • Use a Wall or Spotter: Start practicing near a wall or with a trusted spotter who can provide support and guidance, especially if you’re new to the pose.
  • Work on Flexibility: Regularly practice hip and hamstring stretches to improve your flexibility, which is crucial for achieving the split position.
  • Progress Gradually: If you’re new to the Handstand Split, begin with simpler inversions and splits and gradually work your way up to this advanced pose.
  • Focus on Alignment: Pay attention to proper alignment in your handstand, ensuring your wrists are under your shoulders, and your body is in a straight line.
  • Engage Your Core: Maintain strong core engagement throughout the pose to help with balance and stability.
  • Practice Splits Separately: Work on your front and side splits separately to develop the flexibility required for the Handstand Split.
  • Mindful Breathing: Focus on your breath to stay calm and centered. Deep, controlled breaths can help you maintain balance.
  • Visualization: Mentally visualize yourself successfully performing the Handstand Split before attempting it physically. Positive visualization can boost your confidence.
  • Patience and Persistence: Understand that mastering the Handstand Split takes time and practice. Be patient with yourself, and don’t get discouraged by setbacks.
  • Safety First: Prioritize safety at all times. If you feel any discomfort, pain, or instability during the pose, come out of it immediately.
  • Seek Guidance: Consider working with an experienced yoga instructor who can provide personalized guidance, adjustments, and modifications based on your abilities and limitations.
  • Practice Regularly: Consistent practice is key to improving your skills. Dedicate time to practice the Handstand Split regularly, but always within your limits.

Remember that the Handstand Split is an advanced pose, and not everyone will achieve it. It’s essential to prioritize safety, listen to your body, and progress at your own pace. Yoga is a journey, and the path to mastery is as valuable as the destination.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Handstand Split a beginner-friendly pose?

No, the Handstand Split is an advanced yoga pose that requires a strong foundation in handstands, flexibility, and balance. It’s not recommended for beginners.

How can I prepare for the Handstand Split?

Start by building strength in your core, shoulders, and wrists. Work on your handstand and splits separately before attempting the Handstand Split.

How can I avoid injuries while practicing the Handstand Split?

Ensure you have a strong and controlled handstand before attempting the split. Warm up thoroughly, use proper alignment, and practice with a qualified instructor or spotter.

Can I practice the Handstand Split at home?

While it’s possible to practice at home, it’s advisable to have proper guidance and a safe environment, especially when attempting advanced poses like the Handstand Split.

How long does it take to master the Handstand Split?

The time it takes to master this pose varies from person to person. It depends on your existing yoga practice, strength, flexibility, and consistency.

What should I do if I'm struggling with the Handstand Split?

Seek guidance from an experienced yoga instructor who can provide personalized tips, adjustments, and progression strategies to help you improve your practice.

Can Handstand Split be part of a flow sequence?

Yes, Handstand Split can be incorporated into yoga flow sequences, especially for advanced practitioners. It can be a beautiful addition to a challenging sequence.

Can Handstand Split help with mental focus and concentration?

Yes, the Handstand Split, like many advanced yoga poses, requires intense mental focus and concentration, which can enhance mindfulness and awareness.


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Iana Varshavska
Iana Varshavska
Website administrator

A digital marketer in love with yoga and everything that goes along with it. In 2021, her huge passion for yoga led her to yoga teacher trainings. After successfully completing her studies, Iana received her Yoga Alliance U.S. certification, left the corporate IT world and devoted herself to the development of Yanva. To be able to create the best online yoga space for yoga enthusiasts like her, Iana is constantly learning and improving her skills in various aspects of yoga philosophy, anatomy and biomechanics. Since 2021, she has continued to attend various types of teacher training, including yoga therapy, gives online and offline classes, and conducts local workshops for people who want to learn more about yoga. At the moment, Iana continues to work on her personal practice, improving her hand balancing skills, as well as developing her own training programs.