Within Calisthenics people are performing handstands, muscle ups, planches, etc. These movements look like impressive feats of superhuman strength, however there are a few secrets to performing these exercises. One such secret is, the hollow body position. What is hollow body position? Master the hollow body position and all the other calisthenic exercises will become a lot easier.
What is hollow body position?
The Hollow body position is key when it comes to gymnastics/ calisthenics. The pelvis & the lower back are very important so you should concentrate on core strength and conditioning in order to get better at calisthenics. Professional gymnasts dictate to their body what their pelvis does during exercise. This results in high stability, flexibility, and enhanced athletic performance.
Purpose of hollow body position
Besides gymnastics and calisthenics, the hollow body is an absolute fundamental position regarding body control. An average man cannot perform a handstand or other basic gymnastic exercises. Due to his pelvis not being stable or flexible enough to hold and control his body movements. This is due to your spine being curved at more than 3 points (Cervical, Thoracic and Lumbar spine), i.e. not ideal for performing gymnastics efficiently.
The hollow body position reduces the natural curves of the spine and makes it as flat as possible. Using the hollow body position you are stacking the small vertebral bones on top of each other. So your your back muscles don’t have to do as much work.
Benefits of Hollow Body Position
The hollow body position allows you to correctly transfer and maintain force across your whole body. It is the shortest and most efficient way to get your lower back (spine + muscles) stable and aligned. The more flexible and stronger you are in this position, the more effective you will be at your gymnastic moves.
How to Do a Hollow Body Hold
To achieve maximum pelvic stability you need to learn how to do the hollow body hold in the right way. This exercise looks simple, however there are key tips to consider in order to nail it:
- Lie down in a prone position, i.e. flat on you back.
- Point your arms straight over your head. Keep your legs straight with your toes fully flexed while keeping your thighs, buttocks and abs tight.
- At the same time, gradually raise your legs and shoulders off the ground.
- Make sure to keep your lower back on the ground, then find the lowest position your arms and legs can go to (at first you may find it difficult but it will become easy after a little practice).
The image above shows how the hollow position is done. Being able to hold it for longer periods is the key to gymnastics, calisthenics and all other related sporting activities.