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Thread: biceps/forearm pain while squatting

  1. #1
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    biceps/forearm pain while squatting

    To give some background information: I'm just shy of a month out from a meet.. Monday was my heavy bench day. I tore thestplate on my SDP and just got it back, so more than anything I wanted to check out the shirt, make sure it was right, because I just don't have time to get a new shirt and break it in. So I worked up to upper 700s full range. Wasn't a big deal, but I had some problems touching (I wasn't tucking enough, really just was nervous about a complete blowout in the shirt). I then worked dumbell wrist curls (reverse and regular) for accessory work at the end of the workout.

    On tuesday, it was my medium DE Squat day, so I worked with 470 + choked blue bands. These are new bands, so choked they have alot of tension, but I was moving the bar ok, so I stuck it out for my 7 sets. The thing is about half way through those sets, my forearms, on the inside of the elbow and up the biceps just started screaming with pain. The medial extensors were literally twitching at one point, but it wasn't a true cramp. I chalked it up to a super hot day, the gym was warm and I was off.

    Wednesday was rest day, I spent the day typing a grant proposal and a journal manuscript.. so lots of repetitive use work with my forearms.

    Thursday, again typing most of the day, went to do DE bench. 275 is my usual working weight, but quite honestly it hurt like hell. The same spot on the forearms and lower biceps. I dropped weight back to 225, worked half a dozen sets that way then moved on to the rest of the workout. I couldn't hold onto a dumbell for rows on either hand. At the end of the workout, one of my training partners rolled my forearms and biceps out with a Big Stick.. it was almost like there was bubble wrap under my skin.


    Friday I felt great, until i unloaded a big truckload of mulch. Some forearm discomfort, but nothing bad.

    Today, squatting was a freaking mess. I warmed up raw to 460 like normal, no problems. in briefs to 740, still no problems, 830 with suit on, straps loose, left forearm started to just hurt, like electric jolts to my hand after i finished that set. 920 just sucked ass. I went down, electricity shot through my arms and my left biceps, and I bailed on it. So now lower biceps, medial forearm with left side worse than right.

    I'm putting together a rehab plan, but honestly, right now, I feel asif there was nothing wrong other than a slight twinge in my left lower biceps.


    Has anyone experienced this? My wife said she thinks I'm torquing my elbows too far under the bar, trying to push my chest up more, and thus straining/stressing those muscles. Unfortunately I don't have video from today, so I'm just looking for anyone with similar experiences squatting. I've been squatting for almost 25 years and I've never felt anything like this ever before.... anyone?

    Thanks.
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    Are your hands coller to coller? I found when i brought my grip in my elbow pain went away. Now im very close grip wise and never have elbow pain.
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  3. #3
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    Could be golfer's elbow or medial epicondylitis. This usually comes from straining the flexors of the forearm.

    Your thoughts about shoving under the bar too far, does that mean you are really gripping the bar tight to prevent it from rolling back any further? That could really put stress on the forearm flexors.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ScottYard View Post
    Are your hands coller to coller? I found when i brought my grip in my elbow pain went away. Now im very close grip wise and never have elbow pain.
    No, I am in. I set up with my pinkeyes touching the collar, then move my hands in to pull my shoulders down and back to tighten up my arch. I'm not in "close" either. I'd say about a hands width from the collars, give or take a bit. I don't have the shoulder flexibility (ie I can do it, but my rotators then kill me) to bring in the grip in closer. I'm a big guy (330's right now) so I'm fairly wide across the shoulders too.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by RFabsik View Post
    Could be golfer's elbow or medial epicondylitis. This usually comes from straining the flexors of the forearm.

    Your thoughts about shoving under the bar too far, does that mean you are really gripping the bar tight to prevent it from rolling back any further? That could really put stress on the forearm flexors.
    I have had issues with lateral epicondylitis of my right arm for years (since I tore up the right elbow). This isn't the same pain by a long shot. It is the medial/inside forearm extensor and lower, inside biceps area.

    I squat with a "false" grip, with my thumbs not wrapped around the bar. I've also squatted that way for years. I used to have major problems with the bar rolling on my shoulders and for whatever reason switching to that grip seems to keep the bar from rolling.


    Thanks both to both of you for answering this post. I'm really at a loss to think this one through and I appreciate the help.
    Finally ELITE @ SHW..

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  6. #6
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    So we figured it out.. .inflammed pronator terres, possible entrapment of median nerve.

    What is interesting is that this may go back to some of the grip issues i've had with my right hand for years now, not my elbow.


    Adjusted my stance in a bit, so I can arch harder, moved my hands out a bit, and dropped the bar down. Worked speed work on Tuesday up to several sets of 600, no box, in briefs and didn't have a problem. Went on to pull 545 (which will be somewhere around my 2nd attempt deadlift at the meet +/- 20 lbs depending on how I feel with no problems at all. Will adjust bench grip on Monday.

    All I can say is that this shit hurt, really hurt the first few days.
    Finally ELITE @ SHW..

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  7. #7
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    Thumbs around the bar or against Jack?


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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by joey54 View Post
    Thumbs around the bar or against Jack?
    against. its a challenge to keep the bar from rolling, but if I get it set right I think I'm ok... i hope. We'll see.
    Finally ELITE @ SHW..

    Single ply: 931 squat, 760 bench, 530 deadlift and 2180 total
    Multi ply: 960 squat, 770 bench, 550 deadlift and 2250 total.

    The next stop: PRO total.

    HOO's Gym: building the strongest gym in the South, one plate at a time.

  9. #9
    Moderator joey54's Avatar
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    That set up should alleviate. When you get this all figured out, the grip will help boost the Deadlift too.


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  10. #10
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    I have a similar problem, bicep into shoulder. It flairs up when I am really making progress on my squat. It took me a long time to realize it was from squat, I thought it was a different problem for a long time. I don't know how to fix it, although sometimes it doesn't bother me, and doing certain stretches helps it.

    My first and only meet caused me very little issue, I think it was because I was able to grip even wider, since at home I can only go as wide as the power rack, that and there bar felt amazing to me.

    Hope you can really find a solution to it. Other than stretching I have been debating cutting my second bar and welding it more into a SSB, although I know it feels completely different than a normal squat.

    Keep us informed on your progress so that we can all learn. I'd appreciate it at least. I mean I just got done squatting and my right bicep is hurting pretty good, left not quite as bad, but subsequent bench session are always a pain.

  11. #11
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    One of my training partners pointed out that it was looking like I wasn't keeping my lats tight to pull down the bar... so really this looks like a form breakdown.... I wasn't arching right, lats were loose, tried to compensate by torquing elbows under the bar, forearms took the brunt of it, and eventually something broke down.

    This happens, why I wish I knew. You get off a little bit and that little bit becomes more and more and more until ultimately you get hurt or worse. The real hard part is unteaching the bad habit too. So its going to take some time. Right now, my goal is to get through the meet, then rebuild after that. I'm spending every day wall squatting too for some mental training going into this meet. Hopefully that'll help.
    Finally ELITE @ SHW..

    Single ply: 931 squat, 760 bench, 530 deadlift and 2180 total
    Multi ply: 960 squat, 770 bench, 550 deadlift and 2250 total.

    The next stop: PRO total.

    HOO's Gym: building the strongest gym in the South, one plate at a time.

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