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Complete as many reps as possible in 8 minutes of:
3 handstand push-ups
3 cleans

6 handstand push-ups
3 cleans

9 handstand push-ups
3 cleans

12 handstand push-ups
6 cleans

15 handstand push-ups
6 cleans

18 handstand push-ups
6 cleans

21 handstand push-ups
9 cleans

Etc., adding 3 reps to the handstand push-up each round, and 3 reps to the clean every 3 rounds.

Men clean 185 lb.
Women clean 125 lb.

Handstand push-up foot line

Since this was the first time we see the handstand push-up at the Open, the rules are pretty clear on how to draw the foot line. Hand position is optional as long as you complete the reps with heels touching the wall and over the foot line.

Face the wall with feet at shoulder width and  toes touching the wall, reach your hands over your head elbows locked, shoulders extended and your thumbs touching. Mark the height of your wrists, then measure down 3 inches.  Mark a line on the wall with something that won’t rub off. Heels must touch the wall and each rep must begin and end with heels above the pre-marked line. The head must touch the ground at the bottom each time. 

Clean technique CLEAN hand position

Tips and strategy for handstand push-up & clean

Before the gym

Schedule your visit to the Chiropractor and buy one of those neck brace things.


  1. Wear long socks or something you can put over the heel of your shoe so your feet slide easier on the wall. Froning did this with his shoes at the 2012 Games.
  2. Wear a beanie to help pad your head.
  3. Use a gymnastics mat. If you don’t have one use an abmat with comp plates.
  4. Barbell should be comprised of comp plates so it doesn’t go bouncing around while doing singles.

Warm up

Spend a minute or two extra warming your shoulders up. Restricted shoulders will only make it harder. Don’t change too much though.


  1. Bar should be PARALLEL to handstand push-up (HSPU)
  2. Use a slippery wall if available.
  3. Pre-tape/mark your exact placement of your hands before the WOD so you know exactly how wide you can go when you get fatigued but still hit the height
  4. Take a slightly more narrow grip than you usually use for HSPU
  5. Pre-write the number of reps you need to do on a big piece of paper so you can know what’s next while you are fatigued.


  1. This for most won’t be 100% dominated by your ability to breath. Failure on the HSPU will determine your pace.
  2. PLEASE KIP. That was shocking to see such a seasoned Crossfitter like Bridges choose such an inefficient way of doing that movement.
  3. It’s all about being smart on pacing for your HSUP. This means BREAK HSPU UP EARLY. It also means that your body can only buffer that acid for so long before muscles lock up. Understand everyone has a sticking point. This will vary with each athlete.
  4. BE EFFICIENT EARLY. Panchik did this amazingly. He took it slow from the beginning and made sure he was loading and popping. His kip looks the same from first to last reps (Froning style) Bridges did not.
  5. DO SINGLES on the cleans. Panchick did… case and point.
  6. At 1:40 on the clock they were at the same place. By 4:00 Panchick had a 12 rep lead and by 5:41 Panchik had a 16 rep HSPU lead on Bridges. His no reps were due to his shoulder fatigue from doing strict early on.


crossfit trainingReady for 15.4 in Denver and Stapleton?

We’ll keep working as hard as we can for 15.4 and we hope these tips help. But if you ever wonder how some people reach incredible levels of performance and others struggle year after year, you came to the right place! The coaches Project Rise Fitness listen to your goals and help you improve your performance training. Keep coming back for more tips on how to get the most out of your training both in Denver and in Stapleton. Get your 15.4 scores in by Monday at 6 pm (all athletes will have until 5 p.m. PT on Monday of each week to perform the workout and submit their scores. There are no exceptions to this deadline.)

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