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Thread: Shoulder pain on power clean

  1. #1
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    Default Shoulder pain on power clean

    So I did powercleans for the first time last night and I had some pain in my shoulders. I've always had weak shoulders and always tweaked them benchpressing throughout the years.

    It hurts on the front inside of the ball of my shoulder joint. It doesn't hurt much when I'm actually lifting but it starts to ache later.

    I'm guessing it's my form and that I'm probably using my elbows to lift some of the weight. What can I practice to make sure I keep my arms straight and don't lift with them?

    Also, I think I'm racking the weight on my arms and not on my shoulders enough. Considering I'm only doing 65 pounds right now it all feels weird. The weight moves up too fast and doesn't want to sit on my shoulders.

    Any tips on how I can practice would be great.

  2. #2
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    I'd go through the coaching that Rip has in his book. Go from hang and then move up. Remember, you're jumping, not pulling. Make sure you're getting the bar to the top of your shoulders and not the front.

  3. #3
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    How tall are you and how much do you weigh?

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    Quote Originally Posted by TomC View Post
    How tall are you and how much do you weigh?
    About 5'6 160lbs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Corrie View Post
    About 5'6 160lbs.
    Well, that's not as terribly underweight as I had initially thought. Still, a lot of this stuff is going to cease to bother you as you get stronger and put on some muscular bodyweight. A video is the most useful tool for correcting form across the Internet, which is something of a fool's errand, but if it's all you've got, then it's all you've got. What are your squat and press numbers for your 3x5s? Once you are pressing 135 to 150 for sets across, the 65 pound power cleans are going to be unlikely to cause discomfort.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by TomC View Post
    Well, that's not as terribly underweight as I had initially thought. Still, a lot of this stuff is going to cease to bother you as you get stronger and put on some muscular bodyweight. A video is the most useful tool for correcting form across the Internet, which is something of a fool's errand, but if it's all you've got, then it's all you've got. What are your squat and press numbers for your 3x5s? Once you are pressing 135 to 150 for sets across, the 65 pound power cleans are going to be unlikely to cause discomfort.
    Thanks for the advice.
    I don't really have reliable numbers right now since I just reset to the very start of the program this week. (I was just doing a free form type thing before and I got up to a squat of 2 x 155). I never did any overhead pressing before either, so I'm guessing my shoulders are very underdeveloped.

    If you are correct that adding a bit more muscle will help with the aches and pains, should I be putting off cleans until I build my shoulders up a bit? I don't want to leave anything out of the program, but I'd rather not injure myself.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Corrie View Post
    Thanks for the advice.
    I don't really have reliable numbers right now since I just reset to the very start of the program this week. (I was just doing a free form type thing before and I got up to a squat of 2 x 155). I never did any overhead pressing before either, so I'm guessing my shoulders are very underdeveloped.

    If you are correct that adding a bit more muscle will help with the aches and pains, should I be putting off cleans until I build my shoulders up a bit? I don't want to leave anything out of the program, but I'd rather not injure myself.
    If the cleans are really bothering your shoulders, don't do them, at least not initially. After two or three weeks of doing the program, try bringing them back in. Strength and increased muscular bodyweight are the answers here.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by TomC View Post
    If the cleans are really bothering your shoulders, don't do them, at least not initially. After two or three weeks of doing the program, try bringing them back in. Strength and increased muscular bodyweight are the answers here.
    Great, thanks for all the help. I'll try to stick with them for now, but hopefully the overhead pressing will balance things out for me.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by TomC View Post
    If the cleans are really bothering your shoulders, don't do them, at least not initially. After two or three weeks of doing the program, try bringing them back in. Strength and increased muscular bodyweight are the answers here.
    +1

    Shoulder abnormalites are pretty common. I have some severe problems with mine. But you only really know your limitations when you are pushing yourself physically with strict movements like this. If it really bothers your shoulders, you should indeed be very cautious. If you have unstable shoulders where things impinge inside, you have sharp bone spurs or perhaps your biceps tendon is not anchored properly. Sudden loaded jerking movements in affected positions can potentially cause serious and perhaps irreversible damage.

    I did this with snatches, even though I was supremeley cautious. Training hard with upper body work for 2 years and easing in snatch movements with stick practice & empty bar. I still ended up tearing up my shoulder very badly and it looks like I will never regain the ability to bench press with a bar and other movements too. I seriously fucked myself up.

  10. #10
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    When you do get back to doing cleans, I'd recommend that you post a video. Perhaps it's something that your doing that is leading to your shoulder pain. Read the sticky at the top of the forum on the best way to video!

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