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Old 02-22-2013, 10:58 AM   #1
bostonsc4
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What the heck did I do to my shoulder?

So I'm about 6 months into my lifting regimen, and never really had any issues with my upper body before, especially from lifting. A few weeks ago, I talked about it on a few threads but my spotter was too busy watching the news instead of spotting me on flat bench, and I had to wrench my body by lifting up my left shoulder blade while the right blade was down (just an instinct when I was struggling for one more rep, wish I hadn't) and felt a searing pain from my left ear down to my left bicep, that ripped through my shoulder and left with like a tingling sensation.


Ever since then I've had a little bit of pain in my left shoulder, everything else recovered perfectly fine but my shoulder did not. I can do every workout, shoulder workout included fine with heavy weight as long as I have good form without pain. Shoulder day is fairly painless, I can do the following without any pain:

Dumbbell military press, delt raises (machine) , barbell military press, lateral raises with light dumbbells, handstand pushups all painless with good form

Things that fvcking kill: barbell clean and press, dumbbell single arm clean and press, using a rubber chord, front raises, and lateral raises with my thumbs inward touching the seams of my pants hurt on the way up, then throb when the load is released. I'm seeing a pattern of rotational movements causing terrible pain.


I've been icing every 20 minutes and taking ibuprofen religiously. Its been tolerable, but the barbell power cleans and jerks and dumbbell clean and jerks felt like I needed an amputation. I really don't want to take days off the gym, but I am in the delayed entry program for the Air Force and really don't want to have to have a surgery or injure myself to an extent that would give me problems there. Any thoughts guys? Things I can do to improve the condition of my injury?


Thanks fellas
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Old 02-22-2013, 11:47 AM   #2
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You should chill out on the shoulder stuff for awhile.

Last edited by M3Inline6; 02-23-2013 at 12:38 AM.
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Old 02-23-2013, 08:03 AM   #3
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You should chill out on the shoulder stuff for awhile.
this, i fed up my shoulder doing military press, never again

i had to stop all shoulder and chest lifts for 4 months


i can't understand why they make the rack so far back on the military racks, it's an act so far from normal shoulder movement , it should be removed from gyms imo
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Old 02-22-2013, 01:45 PM   #4
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I had what you had 2 years ago. It took 6 months for pain to go away.

Go see a PT.

Stay away from chest and shoulder workouts especially dips and upper body BB exercises like chest presses, military press, etc... Take it easy when working out other body parts.

Strengthen your rotator cuff muscles when at home using what PT will show you (A rubber band and some body weight exercises)
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Old 02-22-2013, 02:31 PM   #5
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Just booked 3 PT appointments with my local PT's office. The guy is a family friend, which is nice, I get top caliber treatment over here. He seems to think that if I ice like a crazy person, keep a regular dose of ibuprofen flowing, don't touch anything upper body for 2 weeks until I see him, take his rubber chords and do what he tells me for another 2-4 weeks, I can start lifting lightly again.


A real kick in the balls considering all the progress I made just even this week
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Old 02-22-2013, 11:45 PM   #6
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If it goes down your bicep it's likely biceps tendinitis. Feel the front part of your shoulder and rub the tendon on the very front. If there is irritation there or closer down the bicep then that is likely the problem. Doesn't sound like rotator cuff at all
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Old 02-22-2013, 11:48 PM   #7
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It could be a labrum issue as well it really depends where the pain is felt. Labrum is pretty deep in the shoulder and hard to pinpoint. Biceps tendonitis can be deep if the pain is on the long head or on the very top. Really need to give me a visual for me to see where the pain is coming from
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Old 02-23-2013, 08:39 PM   #8
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It could be a labrum issue as well it really depends where the pain is felt. Labrum is pretty deep in the shoulder and hard to pinpoint. Biceps tendonitis can be deep if the pain is on the long head or on the very top. Really need to give me a visual for me to see where the pain is coming from
Take your left shoulder area, right where I believe the shoulder bone ends, (dead center on top of my delt) and go down what feels like an inch or 2. Thats the shoulder pain that came when I did the cleans.


I feel like an MRI is probably a necessity at this point just to see what the aftermath looks like in there.

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Old 02-22-2013, 11:49 PM   #9
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Old 02-23-2013, 08:44 AM   #10
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this, i fed up my shoulder doing military press, never again

i had to stop all shoulder and chest lifts for 4 months


i can't understand why they make the rack so far back on the military racks, it's an act so far from normal shoulder movement , it should be removed from gyms imo
That is weird. I never understood that either. I do strictly standing press.
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Old 02-23-2013, 10:43 AM   #11
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That is weird. I never understood that either. I do strictly standing press.
When I do my heavy sets, I typically have a spotter help lift it off for me, and help rack after my reps. Saves ALOT of unnecessary strain.
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Old 02-23-2013, 11:32 AM   #12
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When I do my heavy sets, I typically have a spotter help lift it off for me, and help rack after my reps. Saves ALOT of unnecessary strain.
^^This!
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Old 02-23-2013, 11:38 AM   #13
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Shoulder presses laying down would fk me up too
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Old 02-23-2013, 02:09 PM   #14
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Don't just go to PT. If you haven't yet, go to see an Orthopaedic doctor. Get an MRI done to see if you have any damage. As has been stated, there is a high likelihood that you've got damage to a labrum. The SLAP tear, or Superior Labrum Anterior and Posterior tear. This is the most common shoulder injury, and it can be healed through rest and rehab, or surgery if it's severe enough.
The last thing to do is not do anything, or to just go easy with the PT and not actively facilitate recovery. Taking 800mg NSAIDs three times daily will assist with the inflammation, which will help with recovery. This is regardless of what injury you have.
If you managed to damage something in the rotator cuff, that may or may not be repairable through PT. You may need to consider surgery. This is why it's important to get the proper medical diagnosis.
I've been to two different PTs, and one was "okay", but not great. The other was was on the ball and she knew exactly what I had and what I needed to do. The second one had a background in sports medicine, so she was very familiar with my injury, and how to rehab it properly. She also laid down a lifting plan for what to do and how to do it, and then also gave me directives on what I was to never ever do ever again.
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Old 02-23-2013, 08:36 PM   #15
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So I just got back from a trip on the weekend with my senior class, and here is what I have to report:

Before doing the single arm clean and presses with 35lb dumbbells, my shoulder had been giving me pain from seemingly deep within it, just pin and needles type with a less than noticeable amount of pain. I worked through it, often felt no pain what so ever doing chest, bis tris etc. So over this weekend, I really don't think I understand whats going on with my left arm... because:

- pain from the shoulder area itself is actually not present at the moment
- I'm having slight throbs that start in my bicep and progress into my forearm
- a few times that traveling pain would even get to my hand / palm region, but not commonly.

- I haven't put any load on my left arm what so ever since Thursday when I did the cleans, but I imagine if I attempted a resistance movement with a straight arm, it would kill. I say this because in recent weeks, the pain would subside if I wasn't working out, but after Thursday even during the night and daytime I'm getting this pain that comes and goes in my bicep and forearm region.

I'm going to tell my PT all of this as soon as I get a chance of course, and I imagine he's going to want to see Xrays / MRI if I can get a slot in over spring break. As I type this right now I'm getting pain in my palm of my left hand, and now its gone. Could this be a pinched nerve? tendinitis? I'm just really really hoping its something correctable with ice and rest.


Moral of this story is do not keep exercising on a known injured joint until its 100%, not 90% because that preemptive start to training again just put me back a lot farther than I desire to be.
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Old 02-23-2013, 09:37 PM   #16
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Pretty sure it's biceps tendinitis. Pretty naggy and will hang around until it literally just goes away one day. A labrum tear or a slap tear is pretty noticeable and more then just nagging. Tendonitis mimics the same feeling as a labral tear. And I've had both.
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Old 02-23-2013, 09:40 PM   #17
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I'm guessing its the point where you can move your tendon with your thumb. That is the top of your biceps tendon. It will pretty much make everything in your arm right. I still have it a little. It will make your elbow tight as well. Just ice and NSAIDs. Don't do anything over your head. Rest it. I've worked out with it, just stop when u feel pain IMO. It's not very common to tear the tendon, but the tendinitis is very common.
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Old 02-28-2013, 07:51 PM   #18
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Going to physical therapy Monday, but before then, I have had the hardest time staying completely dormant and its painful waiting for enough days to go by to do legs again...

I've gone a few times to try to do some very light movements just to engage my upper body in something. I am able to do bicep curls with a 40~ ez bar, set of 10 pull ups, unknown amount of pushups cause I didn't want to push it too hard, benched 95lb without problem for a set of 10, but I just feel like if I push it on anything I could get right back where I started.

Lat raises with a 5, and 10 pound dumbbell are okay at first but pain begins to knock on the door after too many reps of that. The good news is I guess that if I'm capable of doing push ups / pull-ups etc without any pain that what I've done is probably not surgery requiring, or so I hope. Hopefully i'll just get some electric stim, and a bunch of resistance bands to use for a week or 2 then I can get back in the gym.

This is awful, I feel like I lost my sport
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Old 03-01-2013, 07:41 AM   #19
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Rest is going to help the most. You won't lose as much strength as you think you would.

For general shoulder health look up shoulder impingement and exercises to counter-act it. Try leaning lateral raises too.

PT will likely get you to do a very low weight/high rep program focusing on your rotator cuff.
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Old 03-04-2013, 12:15 PM   #20
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Just left the physical therapists office:


His diagnosis is supraspinatus tendinitis! Basically he had me give him a thumbs down at my side and with a straight arm try to raise it laterally against his hand as resistance and, couldn't do it without pain. I got a laser therapy treatment, and electric stim for 8 minutes. Got a rubber chord to use and do 3 sets of as many as possible reps of rotator cuff movements a day. He estimated 4-6 weeks before I can start crushing it in the gym again. Maybe I'll heal up quicker than expected, but he said if I rush it then 4-6 weeks will turn into 4-6 months real quick. Lets hope for the best fellas.
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