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Thread: OHP workaround with bum shoulder

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2018
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    Default OHP workaround with bum shoulder

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    Had a question about OHP workarounds with a bum shoulder. Thank you in advance.

    Several weeks ago I injured my left shoulder - it didn't happen all at once, but over the course of a couple of weeks. Totally my own damn fault - started adding stupid shit to the main lifts (3 sets of lateral delt raises once a week; 3 sets of flyes once a week) and overdid it. Mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.

    I then took two weeks off as I got and recovered from covid.

    I hoped that on my return to the gym this week to begin a new NLP the shoulder would feel better; it doesn't, not much anyway:
    - Squat: I can't currently get into the LBS position. I read on the forum yesterday about creating a DIY SSB using straps; I did that today and it worked well.
    - BP and DL: don't cause any shoulder pain.
    - OHP: BB warm-up sets are fine but pain makes a work set impossible. Today after BB warm ups I did standing DB OHPs (3 sets of 5) with almost no pain. (I also found that incline presses hurt almost as much as OHPs.) So, my question is: is this the right approach or would you recommend something else? Also, if you do recommend this approach, is 3x5 with DBs the appropriate volume?

    I'm male, 56, 5'9", 215.

    Finally, not sure if you need this info but figured I'd embarrass myself: a few weeks ago before the injury my lifts were Squat 270x3x5, BP 215x3x5, OHP 135x3x5, DL 315x1x5.

    Thanks again.

  2. #2
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    What exactly is wrong with your shoulder?

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the reply, Rip.

    I don't have a diagnosis. I don't want to waste your time, so if not having a diagnosis means you can't address my situation just yet, that's my bad.

    But maybe the following is helpful: 1) when doing a regular BB OHP I get a sharp pain in the anterior and lateral delts starting about a quarter of the way into a rep; a neutral grip DB OHP doesn't really hurt. 2) Trying to get the left shoulder into position for a LBS is impossible given that same sharp pain. 3) Finally, I generally sleep on my side to minimize snoring, but can't sleep on the left side these last few weeks without that same pain.

    Getting old is the best.

  4. #4
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    Symptoms vary with the same diagnosis. Get it looked at.

  5. #5
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    Roger.

  6. #6
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    Out of curiosity: Did you get checked, yet?
    I have a similar problem. I can do OHP without pain but benching more than warmup weight causes a lot of pain at the roof of my shoulder.
    Even when holding my arms out and trying to put my shoulder plates in my back pocket, i can feel a little pain.
    Having my doc appointment tomorrow.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Al Copersino View Post
    Thanks for the reply, Rip.

    I don't have a diagnosis. I don't want to waste your time, so if not having a diagnosis means you can't address my situation just yet, that's my bad.

    But maybe the following is helpful: 1) when doing a regular BB OHP I get a sharp pain in the anterior and lateral delts starting about a quarter of the way into a rep; a neutral grip DB OHP doesn't really hurt. 2) Trying to get the left shoulder into position for a LBS is impossible given that same sharp pain. 3) Finally, I generally sleep on my side to minimize snoring, but can't sleep on the left side these last few weeks without that same pain.

    Getting old is the best.
    What is happening at the shoulder and elbow at the position the pain comes on?

  8. #8
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    Not yet. Made an appointment as soon as possible but the first available slot was for this Wednesday, so hopefully Iíll see whatís what in a couple of days.

  9. #9
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    Thanks for the reply, Will.

    I hope the following answers your question.

    Shoulder: The pain is isolated to the lateral delt. In a normal overhand position, an OHP hurts from about 25% of the way up to the top - even if Iím not lifting any weights. The pain is almost as bad doing an incline press. Thereís almost no pain when I bench or dip. If I do a DB OHP with hands in a neutral position and mostly take the lateral delts out of the equation, the pain is much better - it still hurts but not as much.

    In general it feels a lot like it did in 1982 when I was 14 and blew my arm out throwing too many breaking balls.

    Elbow: Best I can tell thereís nothing unusual going on at the elbow. My elbows are out in front when I try to do a normal OHP. Another movement that hurts a lot is a lateral delt raise - obviously, my elbow is way out to the side in that case.

  10. #10
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    Oct 2018
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    Hi Rip and Will. Orthopedistís diagnosis is rotator cuff tendinitis + impingement. Makes sense - I believe that was the diagnosis I got in the other shoulder years ago. (If I were a car my acromia would be recalled.)

    He prescribed nsaids and PT (2-3x/wk for 4-6/wk).

    He also said to keep doing barbell lifts so long as what Iím doing doesnít hurt, so I guess I found a good doctor.

    I was thinking Iíll continue to lift 3x/week but now add PT 2x/week, the day after a training session, where Iím supposed to work on scapular stabilizer and rotator cuff strength, as well as anterior capsule stretching and rom ďmodalitiesĒ.

    Does all this strike you as reasonable?

    Thanks yet again.

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