Variant To Avoid Dumbbell Bench Press Shoulder Pain

shoulder pain

What’s up ? This is THE stephane ANDRE ! I watched an Athlean-x’s video  and I learned some good stuff.

I wrote an article about to avoid pain when you do dumbbell press or overhead shoulder press because I have a pain when I do it. Click here to read the article  . I have the same problem with the dumbbell bench press. I have pain when I do it, so I write this article to continue this exercise without pain.

Bench press is one of the fundamental exercises to build muscles but with this pain, I wondered if I should continue doing this exercise because it hurt.

Problem

The reason for this pain may be a biceps tendonitis, a torn labrum, an inflammation or shoulder impingement (inflammation in rotator cuff). All these problem create instability during this exercise while we know that stability (body’s stability and dumbbell’s stability) is very important to perform the movement properly.

In the case of a torn labrum, labrum is tied to the biceps tendon or rather the biceps tendon is attached to the labrum. During the movement, it’s the tension of the biceps tendon that pulls on the torn labrum.

Solution

The solution is to change the elbows position. To do the classic bench press, the elbows are at between 45° and 90°, dumbbell held horizontally in the hands and you press up. To calm the pain, we’ll change the position. The technique is to tilt the dumbbells so that the dumbbell’s back are facing the ceiling.

Classic dumbbell bench press

dumbbell bench press

dumbbell bench press

dumbbell bench press

Variant dumbbell bench press

variant dumbbell bench press

variant dumbbell bench press

variant dumbbell bench press

Tilting the dumbbell’s back does 2 things :

  • This brings your arms closer to your body because you use a semi pronated grip. With this position your hands and arms make your shoulders have a neutral position. It’s the equivalent of barbell corner press which helps to reduce the pain caused by dumbbell press .

  • You use your triceps more than your biceps during the movement. With the classic position, you use your biceps to stabilize dumbbells than your triceps. With this position, you flex your elbows so you use more triceps to stabilize dumbbells than your biceps.

 

 

dumbbell bench press
Classic dumbbell bench press

 

variant dumbbell bench press
Variant dumbbell bench press

Using more triceps than your biceps will seriously reduce the pain or make it disappear because there is less tension through the biceps and it will less pull on the torn labrum. If you have biceps tendonitis or inflammation, this will seriously decrease the pain. Try this technique and you’ll see that it will be the first time you’ve been doing pain-free bench press for a long time.

When I had this pain during this exercise, I thought of 2 options :

  • Stop doing bench press because you can’t support the pain anymore

  • Use lightweight

Now that I know this technique :

  • I can continue to do bench press

  • I can keep the same weights and increase them

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-Steph

Seated Leg Curls

seated leg curls

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

Sitting on the machine with your legs straight and your ankles on the pads. Your thighs wedged with your hands on the handles :

  • Inhale and flex your legs

  • Exhale at the end of the movement

seated leg curls

This exercise works all hamstrings muscles and in depth popliteus muscle. This exercise works a little bit the gastrocnemius muscles.

Note

Having a sitting position means that you have your pelvis anteversion and this allows you to stretch semi-membranous, semi-tendinous and long portion of biceps femoris favorably to better target the work on this muscle group.

Variants

anatomy leg hamstrings leg curl

  • By doing this exercise with your ankle in flexion, you transfer some of the work on your gastrocnemius muscles.

  • By doing this exercise with your ankles in extension, you mainly target the effort on your hamstrings.

Popliteus muscle

anatomy popliteus muscle

Popliteus muscle is deep in the posterior side of the leg, on the level of the knee joint. This muscle works the hamstrings and gastrocnemius to flex the leg on the thigh.

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-Steph

Standing Leg Curls

standing leg curl

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

Stand with your torso on the support with your knees on the pads and your leg extended. Your ankle is placed under the pads  :

  • Inhale and flex your knee

  • Exhale at the end of the movement

stanting leg curl
With ankle in extension

This exercise works all hamstrings muscle (semi-tendinous, semi-membranous, biceps femoris short and long head) and a little bit gastrocnemius. To work more intensly your gastrocemius, during the flexion of your knee, you need to have your ankle in flexion. If you don’t want work more intensly your gastrocemius, keep your ankle in extension during the movement.

hamstrings femur patella articular disk tibia gastrocnemius fibula anatomy knee

By contracting simultaneously, hamstrings and the 2 gastrocnemius muscles of the triceps surae flex the knee joint.

Biceps femoris short head

anatomy biceps femoris short head monoarticular

For all flexor muscles, the biceps femoris short head is the only one to be monoarticular.

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-Steph

Machine Shrugs

machine shrugs

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

Standing in front of the machine with a pronated grip. You hands are a little larger than your shoulder’s width. Some machine allow you to have a semi pronated grip with you palms face to face :

  • Your head and your back are straight. You shrug your shoulders.

machine shrugs

This exercise works the upper part of the trapezius and levator scapulae.

This machine is excellent to do set with high reps.

Note

It’s funny because the clavicles and the shoulder blades are hung by the trapezius like the deck of a bridge suspended by metal cables.

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

How To Do T-Bar Rows On Feet

t bar rows feet

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

Podcast

Knees slightly bent with the bar between your legs. Your take the handles with a pronated grip. Your back is straight and you incline your torso at about 45° :

  • Inspires and brings the bar to your chest

  • Exhale at the end of the movement

This exercise is similar to the barbell bent rows but it allows a better work of the back muscles because there is less need to focus on the body’s positioning.

This exercise works latissimus dorsi, teres major, infraspinatus, rhomboids, the middle part of trapezius and arm’s flexors (biceps, brachialis, and brachioradialis).

Incline your torso works your abs and spinal erectors isometrically.

With a supinated grip, this exercise especially works the brachialis and the upper part of trapezius at the end of the pull.

There are some machines that allow you to have a semi-pronation grip. With a semi-pronation grip, you intensely work the forearms muscles, especially the brachioradialis.

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

How To Do One-Arm Dumbbell Rows

one arm dumbbell rows

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

Podcast:

The dumbbell in your hand with a semi-pronated grip and your opposite knee and opposite hand in support on the bench:

  • Your back straight, inhale and pull the dumbbell as high as possible keeping your arm along the body and bringing your elbow back.

  • Exhale at the end of the movement

To have a maximum contraction, you can make a slight twist fo your torso at the end of the pull.

This exercise works the latissimus dorsi, teres major, posterior deltoid and at the end of contraction, trapezius, and rhomboids. Biceps, brachialis, and brachioradialis also work a little bit

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph

How To Do Close-Grip Lat Pulldowns

close grip lat pulldowns exercise anatomy back

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

Podcast:

Sitting at the machine with your knees under the pads:

  • Inhale and bring the handle back to the sternum by swelling your chest and tilting your back slightly

  • Exhale at the end of the movement

close grip lat pulldowns exercise anatomy back

This exercise works the latissimus dorsi and teres major.

This exercise works a little bit the rhomboid, trapezius and posterior deltoid when the shoulder blades get closer.

Generally, all « Pull » exercises work the biceps and anterior brachialis. This movement with the semi-pronated grip work especially the brachioradialis.

Share this article if you think it can help someone you know. Thank you.

-Steph.

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