Elbow pain on bench press Elbow pain on bench press

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Thread: Elbow pain on bench press

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Los Angeles, CA
    Posts
    26

    Default Elbow pain on bench press

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    Hi all,

    I've been dealing with elbow pain since I first tried bench pressing some 10 years ago. Granted, I'm a skinny weakling, and my attempts at weightlifting routines have never lasted more than 2 months. But after reading through SS, I'm giving it another go.

    Yesterday was my first day of the program, and as always, once I got to working set weights on the BP, I start getting a sharp stab of pain on the inside of my left elbow (that is, in the little divot next to the bony point of the elbow, on the inside side). The pain only occurs for a brief moment, at the bottom of the press, just as I'm applying the force to start moving the bar back up.

    It's not intolerable, but I sometimes worry it's going to make me drop the bar (my hand goes slightly numb for a second).

    Any ideas on what could be the cause, and more importantly, the solution? I figure just building up the surround muscles is probably a large part of the solution, but I'm not sure how to do that with this limitation.

    Thanks,
    Matt

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    37

    Default

    I experienced similar pain. The problem is likely too wide of a squat grip (yes, I said squat grip). Try narrowing it a little and focus on not supporting the weight with your arms (pushing up or down).

    Take a look at the SS bench press grip again. Make sure the bar goes across your hand diagonoly. The picture in the book helps.

    Finally, when bench pressing, keep your elbows closer to even with the shoulders than down near your hips. Again, the picture in the book helps.

    These 3 changes, plus some additional chins, have me feeling much better. Your milage may vary.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Boston
    Posts
    144

    Default

    Can you post a video?

    I sometimes experiece elbow pain when I unrack the bar on the bench without a spotter's "lift off." I think I'm putting torque on the elbow joint...If I slide further up the bench to get under the bar more this usually lessens. I've never experienced pain at the bottom of the motion.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    47

    Default

    I'm going to guess at this one. I had a similar problem, briefly, a month ago.

    Make sure you're not letting your left elbow rotate to the outside when you are pushing the bar up. Your left shoulder would have to rotate some to allow this to happen.

    I found myself doing this and had some tendon pain in the area you described. I concentrate on keeping my elbows pointing toward my feet instead of to the outside.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Los Angeles, CA
    Posts
    26

    Default

    Thanks for the suggestions. I'll check my grip and play with my elbow positioning during my benches tomorrow, and see if there's any noticeable change.

    While the squat grip may be exasperating the problem (I focused on correcting yesterday, and could feel the difference during the squat), I doubt it's the root cause, seeing as this discomfort predates any attempts at squatting.

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