18.4 And The New Handstand Pushup Standard

The new handstand push-up standard has been all the rage since the announcement of 18.4.  The community has been outraged at the new measurement standard since it causes the line to be higher then the years prior.  No rep after no rep has been the most common complaint.  If you’re struggling to meet the new height then you need to take a step back and look at your handstand pushup form.  Are your hands too wide?  Are you far away from the wall?  Is your back arched when you lookout your arms?  These are important factors that can be the difference between a good rep and a no rep.

Don’t worry about why CrossFit HQ changed the standard.  Don’t worry about if it favors taller athletes, shorter athletes, athletes with shorter arms, etc.  None of that is important.  They set the rules and we do the workouts.  That’s all you can control so focus on yourself and not on the reasoning behind changing the standard.  CrossFit is still a new sport so there will be some growing pains until they get it right.  In comparison, take a look at the NFL catch rule.  The player must maintain possession of the ball all the way to the ground amongst other parameters.  This lead to the famous no catch plays of Dez Bryant and Calvin Johnson.  This year the NFL plans to change the catch rule that would’ve called those same plays catches.  The NFL is still evolving just like CrossFit will.

For those struggling to meet the new height, take a look at your form.  Handstand push-ups have always been a strength for me but even I had trouble reaching the new height.  What did I do?  I adjusted how I normally do handstand push-ups.  I moved closer to the wall and brought my hands inward.  It certainly didn’t feel good doing them this way.  My shoulders and triceps felt more taxed than usual but I had no other choice.  Either evolve as an athlete or get no repped and cry about it on the internet.  Thats all there is to it.

I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination. – James Dean


Image Source: Chris Stroud

Josh Ortiz

I've been an athlete since I started playing baseball at the age of 7 up until the end my collegiate wrestling career. As a bodybuilder looking to supplement my training I stumbled into a Crossfit gym and was immediately hooked. Although I still enjoy bodybuilding I find my passion has shifted to being a competitive crossfitter. My articles will take you through my journey into Crossfit. Enjoy!

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