To begin Phase 2 of the Human Flag, you should have completed all the requirements for Phase 1. If you have not, make a U-turn and work on your planking moves and strength requirements for the shoulder girdle.
This will save you a lot of grief in the long run in time and energy – and probably prevent an injury. The Human Flag, despite how simple it looks, is actually a fairly complex movement that requires a good deal of strength in areas you don’t normally use.
I have painstakingly created a plan to get you to the flag in the minimum time possible, while reducing the chance of incurring an injury. Follow the plan and you’ll succeed. I cannot stress this enough.
How to Do a Human Flag: Phase Two
Assisted Human Flag
You’ll be elevating your feet on a bench or a stability ball or whatever you have. Here is where you start to learn proper hand positioning on the pole.
Your bottom hand uses an underhand grip with the thumb pointing down towards the ground. Your upper hand is pointing in the same direction.
You must push the bottom hand for all its worth, while pulling with the top hand. The width between the 2 hands should be comfortable, and about the width of a wide grip pull up. You will really feel the lats, traps and serratus anterior fire.
Maintain tight core stability in this lateral position. Work your way up to 30 seconds. Try to get up to 3 sets of 45 seconds.
The Half Flag
Half the position and a quarter of the difficulty!
It still looks cool and is a great core strength and stabilization drill. You have almost elite strength when you can pull this off.
Check the pictures for hand and arm placement. The Half Flag works the core harder than the Assisted Flag while giving the shoulders a break. Give it a shot. Work your way up to 10 second holds and then throw in 5 lateral lifts at the end for good measure!
Assisted Handstand Pushups
Do 4 sets of as many as you can pump out. This is my worst exercise by far. I managed to pull the flag off and I completed 4 sets of 5 reps. But if you can do more, go for it. It will only benefit you!
This workout should be done a minimum of 2 times a week, but you’ll get to the finish line quicker if you do this workout 3 times a week. I would not do more than every other day or 4 days a week. You’re putting a lot of stress on the shoulder girdle.
When you can do all the reps and time required for these exercises, move on to Phase 3.
Phase 3 will be completely dynamic pole or jungle gym related work and is the final phase in getting you to the Human Flag!
Good luck and enjoy all your new found skill, strength, and stability!
Wide Grip Pull Ups
Set your hands as wide as possible. Do 5 sets of 15 – 20 reps. Just like during Phase 1: Don’t Cheat!
That means no kipping. Don’t cross your legs and don’t swing.