The Fear of Hanging Upside Down. Remember as a kid hanging upside down…



Many people are drawn to the idea of hanging upside down to relieve back pain or improve posture, which it can. Always, however, ease into hanging upside down. Use an inversion table, which allows you to control the degree to which you invert. You can lie horizontally, at zero degrees, or go all the way upside down at 90 degrees. If you feel any uncomfortable side effects, such as headaches, invert yourself at a lower angle or discontinue use of the inversion table. The first time you use the table, invert yourself between 20 and 30 degrees to get accustomed to these angles for a few weeks. You should feel completely at ease before proceeding to a greater angle of inversion. A total body stretch, increased blood circulation and more oxygen getting to the head are positive effects from hanging at even this mild angle.

Many people are drawn to the idea of hanging upside down to relieve back pain or improve posture, which it can. If you feel any uncomfortable side effects, such as headaches, invert yourself at a lower angle or discontinue use of the inversion table.

Activities That Involve Hanging Upside Down

There are a lot of different ways you can fit inverting the head into regular play with your kids.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Hanging upside down from the couch
  • Children’s yoga
  • Hanging from the monkey bars
  • For younger children, you can set them on your lap facing you and hold their hands while you let them drop back upside down over your knees, and then pull them back up.
  • Lean backward over a large exercise ball.
  • Gymnastics and tumbling
  • Get an indoor trapeze bar – so your kiddo can hang upside down in the house (mounts onto door frame) as much as they like! (Seriously, this thing is AWESOME and will help save your sanity if you feel as crazy as I do when you watch your child leap and roll all over the sofa.)


How Long Can You Safely Hang Upside Down? 

Now you know that there’s a safe way to hang upside down. You have to do it properly and within short periods only. First-timers have to learn the proper position and then do it for only 30 seconds to one minute. 

If you feel uncomfortable or sick within that time, you can stop it without waiting for the time to expire. The clue is to do it only when you don’t feel sick. You will defeat the benefits of body inversion if you get sick in the process.

Expert yogis can hold their inverted positions for 5 to 12 minutes; however, they have had enough practice to last that long. Don’t attempt to do body inversions without consulting your doctor and without proper instructions.

As I previously said, people with underlying illnesses can die when doing body inversions. So, if you’re not sure if you have a hidden disease, consult your doctor first and ask permission to do it.

Other Benefits to Hanging Upside Down Therapy

In addition to a healthier spine, hanging upside down also temporarily increases oxygenation of the blood and increases blood flow to the head and organs. This temporary increase in flow helps pull in better blood to feed the brain, eyes, and organs, while helping the body draw out toxins and spent blood. A good side effect is that it also allows your heart a temporary break from pushing blood around and pumping it from the large muscles in your legs.

You know that flushed feeling when you blush? Bet you didn’t know it is healthy for you. Inversion therapy will give you that flushed feeling as well. This improved blood flow to your skin will help rehydrate it, flush out blood vessels, and improve circulation. Over time, your skin will begin to improve and even glow. The tone and color of your skin will improve along with enhanced mental clarity and reduced pain. The temporary increase in oxygenated blood will have a small effect that adds up over time.

Tips on Hanging Upside Down Without Getting Killed

1. Hanging Upside Down for Long Periods May Kill You

Healthy people could survive, but people with illnesses may get killed when they hang upside down for several hours. I have explained this in the subtopic above.

2. If You Want to Benefit from Inversion Therapy Consult a Licensed Therapist

Inversion therapy is beneficial if you do it properly. However, if you feel sick doing it, don’t force yourself. The treatment is, nor for everyone. There are other methods to obtain the same health benefits – of inversion therapy is not for you.

3. Hanging Upside Down for a Few Minutes Can Be Beneficial

Yogis and persons treated with inversion therapy claimed that hanging upside down has its own health benefits. Nonetheless, the procedure should be conducted by a certified yogi and physical therapist. Some studies have proven the truth of these claims.  

4. Stop If You Feel Unwell during the Process

If you feel sick even before you start or during the process, stop. No one is forcing you to do it. Only do inversions if they make you feel well. 

5. Always Do Inversions Under an Expert’s Guidance

Perform inversions only when a licensed Yogi teacher or a physical therapist, or a doctor is around. Their guidance would ensure that you’re not endangering yourself in any way.


According to an article in the “Los Angeles Times,” inversion can be risky for people with certain conditions because the blood flow to the head increases and the body is put in an “unnatural inverted state.” Anyone with high blood pressure, glaucoma, weak bones or with heart or circulatory disorders are discouraged from being inverted. Women who are pregnant or who are obese should also consult a doctor before attempting inversion.