YOUR BACK ARCHES -- You’ve lost your dish, lost control and buggered it up. This happens a lot at first. Figure it out, was it strength or do you just need to practice the exercise more?? If it was strength, be patient, back off and don’t take your legs so low until you’ve adapted. If it was a motor control issue – great. You have an opportunity to improve quickly, but you have to practice a lot and get to know the movement. Make sure you truly understand it, then practice in different positions until you get the skill.
*If you have a naturally anteriorly tilted pelvis, which is very common in the ladies as well as handsome athletic gentlemen like myself, posterior tilting of the pelvis can be very tough at first. Be patient, practice a lot, and you will get it.
YOUR LOW BACK HURTS --If you have any back issues, this may help, but please get checked out by an expert first. I’m not really talking about you here…If you have no back issues, but your lower back starts to hurt you mid-Dish, it’s usually that you’ve lost position and are trying to continue anyway. Or, it could just be that your abs and ‘Dish Musculature’ are fatigued, aren’t doing their job, and the back is over-working and getting involved as a consequence.
If this happens to you, stop doing Dish for the day, next time stop before you start to feel the back take over and build up slowly and mindfully. You should get better, and it should disappear over time. If it doesn’t, if you don’t, see a coach or a physio and get some help.
TOO MUCH LIFT OFF -- Keep the bottom of the shoulder blades on the floor I said! It’s very common you want to lift up to a position of less tension where it's easier to recruit the upper abdominal musculature more as well. Don’t do it!
TOO MUCH AB TENSION -- Everybody wants a six-pack; I get. It’s easy for me because my six-pack is so ripped you can see it through my T-Shirt. But it doesn’t mean you have to tense your Abs as hard as you can. Not on this, but people tend to do it here. Folks get frustrated because they can’t get the position right, and then they over do it trying to hold with brute force from the wrong area. Naughty! Just pull in the Lower Abs and relax the upper portion. Your six pack will come, but not from this. It's about the food!
YOU'RE TOO GREEDY / YOU LACK PATIENCE -- It's classic seeing people mess these up trying to get their legs all the way down before they are ready. If you lose position, regress slightly.
POOR PROGRAMMING -- My Handstand coach Sammy, he used to make us do this for warm up. He’s a bit of an asshole, and they are really hard. But he is smart. If you do these too late, or while you’re out of breath, you may well struggle. Don’t do these in the middle of a circuit. Do them in a calm and focused manner -- especially when you are learning.
YOU LACK FOCUS / MOTIVATION -- These take focus. You can’t ‘just do’ them. You gotta get inside the muscles, feel them work. If you don’t feel the right stuff, stop staring at the handsome stranger across the gym… focus! Why are you doing this, how should it feel?