Tantra Tips with Crystal Lai

Learn how to transition basic techniques into advanced moves!

Here's what we're going to review

  • Best ways to use a handstand as a transition
  • How to build up your strength
  • Two of the most popular advanced moves out there today!

My Most Popular Advanced Moves and Transitions

I’m going to show you some advanced moves using the basic concept of the handstand on the pole.  We teach you twisted grip, regular & chinese grip handstands in our main library!  Here are some of my tutorials on how the handstand can be applied to other tricks.

One Arm Handstand

I love this one-armed handstand. It’s a great move to practice body awareness, proper alignment, and proper mechanics. You want to think about pushing through and down with the bottom arm (the one that’s on the floor), using not only your forearm but using your lats and core. The whole body is engaged here, because you definitely do not want a strong upper body and jello legs! Eliminate any “dead weight” by keeping everything activated from your pinky finger to your pinky toe. This goes for any kind of handstand!

Marion Amber

Another important tip about handstands is that you have to get your hips up and over your head. A common mistake I see when teaching is that the student is fighting being upside down by trying to be rightside up. Definitely have a spotter to help navigate you into the right position - your bum should go where your head was and your head should be where your bum was. Also, take it one step at a time. Often I see injuries occur when a person tries to go straight for the end goal. With the Marion Amber, have a spotter, start with the knees tucked position until that feels comfortable before you attempt extending the legs. Safety first, boys and girls!


Let’s quickly explore the basic rules for static pole spins: the further your reach your hips away, the more momentum you have, and the lighter you feel. Combining this with the Phoenix, the lighter you feel, the easier it is to flip into a handstand. Once you’re there, don’t forget the technique of the handstand: pull down with the top shoulder all the way down on your back through your lats, push through bottom arm down the shoulder and lats. Keep the core tight! This is an advanced move, but totally achievable when you’re ready. Keep working on those handstands on and off the pole!

Frequently Asked Questions

I have three questions that I get more than any others, here they are along with my answers!

  • q-iconI feel like I’ll never be able to do the handstand. What am I doing wrong?

    Find a spotter to spot you to do a handstand. If you have the necessary strength to do the handstand yet you cannot do the handstand, it is mostly because your technique is wrong or you’re scared. Having a spotter or someone that can do the handstand will help tremendously. Also, do the handstand first by kicking into the wall and if that is still too scary, then start with forearm stand. In order to be able to do a one arm handstand, one must be able to do a handstand against the wall and also work on the floor handstand. The push-pull mechanism is still in place so make sure you use this technique to find your balance. Since your weight is not as evenly distributed in the one arm handstand, you want to make sure you are engaging your obliques.

  • q-iconWhat’s the best grip style? Twisted, regular, or Chinese grip?

    All grip styles are great. You should always start with building strength by doing regular grip and chinese grip. Once you are able to do those grips, then you can start to work on twisted. Twisted grip is the WORST position that you can put your shoulder and wrist into. Because you are locked in position, it gives you a false sense of strength and that is when you will injure yourself if you are not ready yet.

  • q-iconI cannot find momentum when I spin - what am I doing wrong?

    When you cannot find momentum during your spin, it is mostly because you are not drawing a circle to create your momentum into your spin. Make sure to sweep your leg/arm/body weight around the pole (in a circular way). Try to avoid kicking and jumping.

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