Simone Biles and Katelyn Ohashi one-upped Tom Holland's original handstand t-shirt challenge by adding sweatpants (or rather, removing them) into the mix.

By Arielle Tschinkel
April 14, 2020
Baden-Wuerttemberg, Stuttgart: Gymnastics: World Championships, apparatus finals, women: Simone Biles from the USA reacts after her exercise on the ground
Credit: Tom Weller/picture alliance via Getty Images

When Tom Holland challenged his Spider-Man: Far From Home co-star Jake Gyllenhaal and Ryan Reynolds to the handstand challenge, he probably didn't expect Olympic gymnasts to eventually hop on the bandwagon (and show them up).

While Reynolds declined to take part (he replied with a hilarious look of disbelief and a simple "No" in a video on his Instagram Story), Holland and Gyllenhaal muscled their way through the mission—doing a handstand while putting on a shirt—much to the delight of their Instagram followers. (Related: Celebs Are Sharing Who They #StayHomeFor to Prevent the Spread of the Coronavirus)

Now, Olympic athletes are putting their own spin on the handstand challenge—including bobsledder and hurdler Lolo Jones. Inspired by Holland and Gyllenhaal, Jones upped the ante, putting on not one but two shirts while in a handstand. She even took a sip of red wine at the end (yes, while upside down) to celebrate.

In her video, Jones joked that this kind of strength is "why God chose women to deliver kids." She also thanked Holland and Gyllenhaal "for having their shirt off because [she hasn't] seen a man in 25 days," (#relatable).

Olympic gymnast Katelyn Ohashi (literally) tried her hand at the challenge, too. But even she had her own twist on it: Ohashi put on a shirt while doing a handstand without using the wall for support.

Not only did Ohashi manage to do that on several different attempts, but she also kicked things up a notch by taking off her sweatpants while doing a free-standing handstand—in under a minute flat, mind you. (ICYMI: Jennifer Garner knocked out three self-quarantine challenges at the same time.)

A few days later, fellow Olympic gymnast Simone Biles took on Ohashi's sweatpants challenge. Sure, it took Biles a few more tries than Ohashi, but she still crushed it.

Of course, unless you're also a professional athlete, or happen to already know how to do a handstand, it's probably not wise to try this challenge on a whim at home. (Remember: Hospitals are busy enough RN with people coming in because of the coronavirus; now's not the time to wind up in the ER because of an Instagram challenge gone wrong.)

That said, if you're inspired and want to use your time in quarantine to work on the strength, flexibility, and coordination needed to learn how to do a handstand, there are plenty of ways to achieve your goal—provided you use enough sturdy support (like a wall) and take things very, very slowly. Start by regularly doing exercises like hollow hold, pike hold, wall walks, crow pose, and core roll-backs to begin building your strength. (Here's a detailed breakdown of how to nail a handstand in three weeks.)

Once you've mastered the basics, try these handstand variations to further your balancing practice. Pretty soon, you might just slay the handstand challenge yourself.


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