Guys....I ruptured my bicep doing deadlifts yesterday. It was a complete tear, and surgery is scheduled for next week. In the mean time, what kind of an alterante routine can you guys recommend? I'd love to hear from someone who has had the same experience to know what they did.
I hate that I can't deadlift for a long time, but I can still squat and I may be able to do some pressing in the next few weeks. I've been doing the 5-3-1 for the past few months. Should I just substitute front squats or concentric good mornings for the deadlift?
Sorry to hear that. I had a partial tear of my right pec a couple of weeks ago.
I would do GMs of all types in lieu of deadlifting. When you are able to return to deadlifting you will be just as strong as ever.
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I've tore both of my biceps - distal tendon - about 2 yrs ago was the most recent. We've had another guy in our group that has recently tore his bicep and had his surgery 2 weeks ago.
It will be hard to get back to squats or GMs unless you have a Safety Squat bar because you are probably going to be very limited using the arm with tore bicep.
When I tore mine, we did not have an SSB.. so I worked up a way to squat with a towel or long strap connected to the side where the tore bicep was.. and hold it across my chest, being very careful balancing the bar across my back. Having good spotters and perferably squatting in a rack is required. With the guy who recently had the surgery has a very large, immobile arm brace that stays on all the time, we are finding it difficult to rig up a work around, so he is unfortunately having to use some various machines around the gym.
We also are doing 1 arm DL for reps with the good arm. It will keep your core up, build great grip and provide some GPP/rehab. Weighted Back Extensions helped... and I think if you have a GHR and Reverse Hyper, those should be doable with a brace.
Pressing is a bit easier... obviously as long as it's one sided. With the guy with the surgery, we are able to work up to about 95% max on all of his previous DB pressing efforts - overhead, flat and incline work.. and looking to hit 100% this coming week.
As far as "full" use of the injured arm... since I didn't have surgery, i was grabbing bars within 3 weeks - real light.. and was back to "full" strength around 12-13 weeks. I measured my maxes at that time - my squat only went down about 10 lbs, my BP went down about 25 lbs and my DL stayed the same. Both the squat and BP were back to previous levels within a month. The BP went down the most more because of technique, not so much strength. As my overhead strength actually improved during this time.
It is definitely true that your body tends to improve on both side when you are forced to work with only one side... not that size is any factor in PL, but there was essentially no difference in appearance before and after... and besides any type of curling, both sides were of equal strength after the 12 week rehab..
GL with your rehab...
I hope some of the Westside guys chime too.. I know that Louie had the surgery a few years back.. and I think he came back to full strength pretty quickly too.
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Wait for Scott Yard to chime in. He recently had a similar injury and wasn't able to deadlift for some time I believe.
Thanks for the feedback. And for the record, mine is a distal tear as well. The surgery is going to take place on either Tuesday or Wednesday of next week. I'll hit the squats, good mornings, and weighted hypers as hard as I can over the next several weeks. I'll keep checking for some additional info...
My tear was a split right down the middle so not quite as severe as yours but a tear none the less. REST. Unless your pretty sure that your lifting days are numbered or that you promised your wife 1 more year then your done....just rest. Powerlifitng is a marathon not a sprint. if you truly love this sport you know youll be doing it for a long time, Take this time to heal and give your mind a rest. Sure you can train and work around it but at what cost? Let it heal entirely, then get back to the grind.
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One of my training partners had a complete tear to one of his biceps two year ago. He rested for one or two months after surgery then he started squatting with the SSB but he got back to a straight bar really quick after that. He did his rehab and stretched a lot if I remember right. I don't really know when he got back to benching since I only train with he once a week but he was back breaking his old PR in the deadlift(directly after heavy SQ) in 10 months. What sucks is that he tore his other biceps off this year but I'm sure he will be back soon.
Complete distal rupture for me a couple of years ago as well. After about 4 weeks got to start pt. I was probably about 3-4 months before I was able to get to work in the gym. I was back up to speed at right about 6 months. Here's my advice, get a really good pt that wants to get you back to powerlifting. Don't just accept anyone a dr will send you to. Also, like Scott said, don't rush it. I made sure to keep my diet in check because I knew I would not be lifting for a while. I also walked a lot. I fiured it was a good time to work on a little conditioning.
Good luck with the surgery. Be smart and don't rush things.