Biceps Tendon Rupture

biceps brachiitTendon rupture

I read a Frederic Delavier’s book « Strength Training Anatomy » and I learned good stuff.

Rupture or tear of the biceps long head is the serious injury the most frequent in sport

This injury usually appears on a muscle weakened by tendinitis caused by a sudden movement of the arm. Sudden arm movements are usually thrown like baseball, tennis, throwing sports and also Olympic weightlifting during the snatch. At this point, all tension transferred to the biceps long head which breaks most often where the tendon passes into the intertubercular sulcus of the humerus.

In bodybuilding, this injury is a little different, especially with the deadlift.

There is a technique in deadlift which consists of having a hand with a pronated grip and the other with a supinated grip to lift heavier weights and to avoid that the barbell rolls in the hands.

This simple technique is at the origin of the rupture or the disinsertion of the lower of the biceps (where the muscle is inserted on the humerus). Fortunately, this injury rarely happens.

During the positive phase of the deadlift, the muscles that work are legs, glutes, back and abs. Arms relaxed but they stretched as cranes cables.

Unfortunately, when a hand is with a supinated grip this shortens the biceps (the biceps is extremely powerful with a supinated grip). The result is that there is tremendous tension due to the heavy weights which cause the tearing or total rupture of the tendon of the radius. The biceps with a supinated grip works more than the biceps with a pronated grip.

In the deadlift, the injury is exclusively on the distal tendon of the muscle. The arms hang along the body, which causes the tension to be distributed at the top of the muscle between the tendons of the short head and the long head. For other exercises when the tension is at the bottom of the muscle, the tension is supported on a single tendon insertion.

biceps brachiitTendon rupture

The rupture of the biceps tendon causes a pain relatively moderate compared to the severity of the injury. If we compare the rupture of the biceps tendon with the major pectoralis or the adductors of the thighs, the pain is different. With a rupture of the major pectoralis tendon or adductors of the thighs, the suffering is so strong that the athlete must stop the effort.

It often happens that during a powerlifting competition, athletes who have a rupture of the biceps tendon during the deadlift, continue until the end of the movement.

When this injury occurs, there is swelling in the forearm because of hemorrhaging. But the most surprising thing is the retraction of the biceps which forms a ball at the top of the arm near to the pectoralis major and deltoid. This biceps retraction causes the brachial muscle in the lower arm to be more exposed.

biceps brachiitTendon rupture

It’s always possible to make a flexion of the arm with the rupture of the muscle, which less powerful than before, thanks to the brachial muscle, brachioradialis, long and short radial extensor of the carpus and the pronator teres muscle. On the other hand to make a movement with a supinated grip is a problem because the end of the movement is only carried out by a single muscle, the supinator muscle.

You have to be careful because this injury should be treated quickly by surgery to restore the brachial biceps tendon to the radius. If this surgical operation is not performed in time, the ball will have a fibrous transformation and retraction will be final. The arm’s mobility will always be possible but the loss of strength in flexion and supination is inevitable.

There is a solution to avoid this type of injury with deadlift with a bicep work to have a tendinous reinforcement. This exercise is to do a flexion only with forearms with a straight barbell. This exercise reinforces the biceps distal tendon but be careful by controlling the movement.

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Neck Position


I read a Frederic Delavier’s book « Strength Training Anatomy » and I learned good stuff.

In bodybuilding, having a bad neck’s position during an exercise can create neuralgia.

These neuralgias are numbness of the arm with tingling.

These sensations arrive a few days after doing exercise like dips, pec deck rear deltoid lateral, squat and deadlift. The cause is that the exercises were done with the neck extension, head back.

dips bad neck position

The truth is that the head back’s position triggers spasms and contractions of the deep muscles of the neck, which creates compression of the spinal nerves at their exit from the cervical vertebrae.

This compression creates a neuralgia that usually affects the brachia plexus around the vertebrae C4, C5, C6, C7, C8 et T1 (C for cervical and T for thoracic).

plexus brachial


Do dips or pec deck rear deltoid lateal with head forward by bringing your chin to your chest. This avoids these neuralgias.

neck position

Do deadlift or squat with your head straight (neutral position) looking forward. This avoids these neuralgias.

If the neuralgia installed, it’s important to stop any exercise with the head back (neck extension).

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Shoulder Stretching

shoulder stretching

I read a Frederic Delavier’s book « Strength Training Anatomy » and there is good stuff.

Standing with an arm to the horizontal. You take your elbow with your opposite hand and you pull slowly on your arm to bring your elbow to the opposite shoulder.

Keep this position for 30 seconds to feel the stretch.

This exercise mainly works the deltoid posterior and lateral. It’s important to do this because the teres minor muscles and infraspinatus, which are external rotator muscles of humerus, often have contractures that can create a functional imbalance of the shoulder. This may be, for example, excessive tendon’s friction of the long portion of the biceps in the bicipital groove of the humerus. And the consequences of these contractures can be inflammatory pathologies

This exercise works a little bit the trapezius middle and lower portion and rhomboid major muscle.

Variant : You can pull the elbow with your opposite arm from below.

shoulder stretching

Note : For very muscular persons, the arm’s adduction may be hampered by compression of the brachial biceps on the pectoralis major, which will limit the proper stretching of the shoulder.’s posterior.

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Barbell Front Raises

barbell front raises

I read a Frederic Delavier’s book « Strength Training Anatomy » and there is good stuff.

Standing with legs slightly apart. Your back straight with your abs contracted. Place a barball on your thinghs with a pronated grip and you have arms outstrechted :

  • Inhale and raises the barbell until the level of your eyes

  • Back to the start position slowly by avoiding shaking

  • Exhale at the end of the movement

This exercice mainly works your anterior deltoids, your upper pectorals, infraspinatus and a little bit your trapezius, serratus anterior and your short head of your biceps.

If you raise higher up, your posterior deltoids also work to help raise your arms vertically.

This exercice can also be done at the low pulley. Put your back against the machine with the cable passing between your legs.

Note : Your brachial biceps works a little bit in alll anterior elevation of your arm.

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Stretching Of Deltoids Anterior

stretching of deltoids anterior beams

I read a Frederic Delavier’s book « Strength Training Anatomy » and there is good stuff.

Standing legs spreads to shoulers width. Your arms stretched behind your back with your fingers crossed. Push your arms as far back as possible and raise your arms slowly. Pull out your torso and try to touch your torso with your chin.

Keep this position for 10-20 seconds.

This exercice mainly stretches deltoid anterior beams, pectoralis major (chest) and brachii biceps. This exercice stretches a little bit the brachial, brachio-radial and all wrist’s muscles extensor.

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One Arm Dumbbell Press

one arm dumbbell press

I read a Frederic Delavier’s book « Strength Training Anatomy » and there is good stuff.

Sitting on a bench with your back straight. Your arms bend with your elbows forward. A dumbbell in each hand in supinated grip (thumbs inwards) and at the level of shoulders :

  • Inhale and press your arm vertically by rotating your wrists at 90° to have your hands in pronation (thumbs outwards).

  • Exhale at the end of the movement

This exercise work deltoid muscles, mainly the anterior bundles and the clavicular bundle of the pectoralis major, triceps brachial, trapezius and anterior serratus.

chest shoulder muscles


We can do this exercise :

  • Sitting with a backrest to prevent excessive arching of the back

  • Standing

  • Alternatively, one arm after other


Train with elbows forward, we limit excessive friction at the elbows joint, which can trigger inflammations than can lead to severe pathologies. This movement is recommended to people with fragile shoulders. This is to replace traumatic exercises like back press or dumbbell press.


Reverse Curls

reverse curls anatomy version

I read a Frederic Delavier’s book « Strength Training Anatomy »  and there is good stuff.

Standing with your legs apart and your arms outstretched. Hold the barbell in  a pronated grip ( thumbs inside) :

  • Inhale and flex your arms

  • Exhale at the end of the movement

  • Back to the starting position by controlling the barbell’s descent

This exercise works the extensor muscles of the wrists : Extensor carpi radialis longus, extensor carpi radialis brevis, extensor digitorum, extensor digiti minimi, extensor carpi ulnaris. And it works also the biceps, brachioradialis and brachialis.

reverse curls anatomy version

arm anatomy version

Note : This an excellent exercise to strengthen the wrist joint, often weakened by an imbalance caused by the predominance of the flexor’s wrists muscles  over the extensor’s wrist muscles. For this reason a lot of boxer and bench press champion do this exercise to prevent the wrists from vibrating with extreme weights.

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