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10 Most Impressive Advanced Headstand Variations

All poses are demonstrated by Sapphire Ng, guitarist, dancer, model and pioneer of Contortion Guitar.

Backbend Torso Twist Front Splits One Arm Headstand

1. Backbend Torso Twist Front Splits One Arm Headstand


Skills required

Backbend, Torso Twist, Front Splits, Headstand

How to get into the pose

From straight pencil headstand, lower the legs into middle splits

Bend left leg (or vice versa) into 90 degrees and rotate torso sideways and into a backbend towards the left elbow, transforming the middle splits into front splits

Place left foot on left elbow

Further rotate torso and place left foot on the ground in front of left elbow

Engage and fully extend the front splits

Lift one hand off the ground

Headstand Backbend

2. Wide Straight Legs Scorpion Headstand


Skills required

Backbend, Headstand

How to get into the pose

From straight pencil headstand, widen the legs slightly to form a V-shape

Arch the back to the maximum possible

Adjust position of hands if needed

Headstand Backbend Middle Splits

3. Backbend Middle Splits Headstand


Skills required

Backbend, Middle Splits, Headstand

How to get into the pose

From straight pencil headstand, lower the legs into middle splits

Arch the back to the maximum possible and bring hips backwards

Middle Straddle Splits Headstand

4. Middle Straddle Splits Headstand


Skills required

Middle Splits, Headstand

How to get into the pose

From straight pencil headstand, lower the legs into middle splits

5. Front Splits Headstand

Skills required

Front Splits, Headstand

How to get into the pose

From straight pencil headstand, lower the legs into front splits

6. Torso Twist Front Splits Headstand


Skills required

Torso Twist, Front Splits, Headstand

How to get into the pose

From straight pencil headstand, lower the legs into front splits

Rotate the torso sideways

7. Closed Straight Legs Scorpion Headstand


Skills required

Backbend, Headstand

How to get into the pose

From straight pencil headstand, arch the back to the maximum possible

Adjust position of hands if needed

Backbend Torso Twist Front Splits One Arm Headstand 3

8. Backbend Torso Twist Front Splits Headstand


Skills required

Backbend, Torso Twist, Front Splits, Headstand

How to get into the pose

From straight pencil headstand, lower the legs into middle splits

Bend left leg (or vice versa) into 90 degrees and rotate torso sideways and into a backbend towards the left elbow, transforming the middle splits into front splits

Place left foot on left elbow

Further rotate torso and place left foot on the ground in front of left elbow

Engage and fully extend the front splits

9. Scorpion Headstand


Skills required

Backbend, Headstand

How to get into the pose

From straight pencil headstand, widen the legs slightly to form a V-shape and bend both legs

Arch the back to the maximum possible

Adjust position of hands if needed

10. Legs Together Scorpion Headstand


Skills required

Backbend, Headstand

How to get into the pose

From straight pencil headstand, bend both legs

Arch the back to the maximum possible

Adjust position of hands if needed


Sapphire Ng

Sapphire Ng is a guitarist, dancer, model and pioneer of Contortion Guitar, an original and distinctive performance act which unites acrobatics and contortion with guitar playing.

She is also a 2-time scholarship winner, having graduated with a second class honours with upper division for her Bachelor of Laws, Law LLB at Queen Mary University of London in the UK, and also with a Summa Cum Laude for her Bachelor of Music in Music Business and Management degree at Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA, USA.

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