Handstand push ups are an excellent test of upper body pressing strength. They're functional, challenging, and fun! However they're not the easiest exercise for most people to accomplish, and most people can't just flip upside down and start banging out a set of them. So lets look at how you too can work towards adding the handstand push up into your array of exercises.
Get Comfortable with Push Ups:
Getting comfortable with basic push ups is an absolute must! This means mastering the push up to the point where its no longer a challenge to you what so ever. You might also want to try Hindu push ups and dive bomber push ups like I've outlined in "The Body Weight Solution". Once you have these down, then you're ready to move to the next step!
Master Pike Push Ups:
Pike push ups are an excellent way to accustom your body to the pressures of handstand push ups. Try starting them with your feet on the ground at first, get comfortable with these and practice them until they're no longer a challenge for multiple reps. Once this has been accomplished try pike push ups with your feet elevated on a bench, bar, or ball.
Time To Go Upside Down:
You'll want to get comfortable holding your own body weight for long periods of time when upside down. So practice holding your hand stands for 1min each while up against the wall. Once you're able to hold your hand stand for at least 1min and you're performing multiple reps of feet elevated pike push ups, you'll be ready to try out the hand stand push up!
The hand stand push up is no easy feat, try to keep your feet together as much as possible, control your body weight throughout the entire movement, and don't forget to breath! Come up slowly, a lot of blood will rush to your head and you don't want to get light headed or worse. Take your time, it's all about practice.