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Old 08-15-2012, 09:04 PM   #1
Daniel Mumm
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Default Distal bicep tendinitis

Ok so... I've scoured the internet for answers to this and I've found nothing good. I've also visited many PT's / AT's, who all seem to be useless because they understand nothing about this injury within the context of weightlifting (one PT actually said, "olympic weightlifting? That's like bench press and stuff right?" -- I walked out). So I figured this would be a good place to ask; I'm sure weightlifting coaches probably know more about this injury than any of the PT's/AT's I talked to.

So I've made the move from general strength/conditioning (with some weightlifting) to just weightlifting. I'm on Greg's 4-week strength program ( http://www.catalystathletics.com/wor...php?cycleID=30 ). It's certainly more volume than I've ever done with certain movements (anything overhead, particularly).

The pain in my distal biceps has gotten excruciating. I attempted to max out my lifts today as part of day 5 of the program. I couldn't snatch 50kg because I couldn't hold the weight over my head at the bottom of an OHS. To give you an idea my DL is about 410lbs and my back squat is around 310lbs. After snatching I tried to max my C+J but the pain was so bad in the front rack I had to stop. I'm sure some of you know how frustrating this is, leaving in the middle of my workout on max day.

I don't know much about this subject but if I had to GUESS, I would guess that internally rotated shoulders in overhead positions put more mechanical stress on your biceps which wears down the tendons. But I could be completely wrong.

Sorry for the long intro, this is my first post here. Basically what I need answered are two questions:

1) What, SPECIFICALLY in the context of weightlifting, causes bicep tendinitis? If you say "lots of overhead activity causes it brah" I'm gonna have an aneurysm. I need to know what compromised positions are mechanisms of injury for bicep tendinitis in weightlifters. Obviously, technically correct overhead exercise doesn't cause tendinitis or else nobody would be able to do high volume weightlifting programs.

2) What can I do before my workouts to fix the CAUSE of this problem? What can I do to correct my shoulder position? Right now I'm doing a lot of mobility work, about a half hours worth before I even start lifting.
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Old 01-13-2013, 10:33 AM   #2
Greg Everett
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This kind of stuff is pretty common in people who don't transition conservatively into this kind of training. If you make a large and abrupt increase in any activity, you're going to get beat up. I would back way off the overhead/elbow-related work for a couple weeks to get the inflammation down. During that time, continue with the mobility work for the entire body - any poor positioning can contribute to pain in seemingly unrelated body parts.

When the pain is gone or at least very minimal, begin increasing the volume and intensity of the exercises that were removed, and do so incrementally and conservatively. More often than not, it's not the volume or intensity itself that is causing the problems, but the abrupt increase. If you can build back up to the full level gradually enough, you should be able to get conditioned for it and do fine.
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