T Nation

Armpit Deadlift Injury

I’ve been lifting for a few years, but only recently did I start getting serious about it. However, two weeks ago I was attempting 10 deadlift reps at 225, when on the third rep I felt something twinge/pain in my arm. More accurately, the pain was in the front ‘edge’ of my left armpit that connects my pec to my shoulder/bicep. (There’s probably a better name for this, but I don’t know.)

I stopped the set, and took one week off from the deadlift. Last week I tried deadlifting at 135 and it still hurts, but not as bad. The 225 I was lifting at shouldn’t been a problem, since my 5 rep max is 255. (I’m 5’10" and weigh 165)

I’m not sure how long I should be resting, or how else to heal this injury. Was there a possible form problem that caused this – I’d like to fix it if possible.


I think the area is the Pec-delt tie in but i could be wrong

Thanks. Any advice for rehab?

I can’t really give any advice out on rehab considering ive never experienced this before, and am only 14. But im sure someone here at T-Nation knows something that can help you.

Does the pain only present when you attempt to deadlift, or does it persist through other activities? Is the pain matched on your other side, and if so, is it the same or at a different intensity?

Have you ever seen a doctor or a chiropractor for any injuries related to training?

hmmm, novel thought, go see a sports doctor or a physiotherapist, ask a couple of the “good” trainers at your gym for their recomendation on who to see.

rest is great, and so is heat and massage, but if you dont knwo what the root cause of your problem is you wont know how to prevent its reoccorence.

were you using an left hand under grip? if so, maybe the pain is associated with your bicep. also, I’ve had similar sounding pains from deadlifting and have felt relief from foam rolling-starting at my chest then rolling away to my bicep. can’t ever do too much foam rolling. also, have someone that really knows what they’re doing look at you to be sure.

my first thought when i saw this post was possible bicep strain/tear. Biceps origin connects just near the shoulder at the head of the humerus, so if there is a bicep strain you would likely feel it towards the shoulder.
keep resting it, but definitely go see a physio/doctor to have it checked out.

Could be that you are lifting with a bent elbow.
Keep them absolutely straight or you risk straining your bicep and tearing it.

A biceps tear is kind of what I was thinking as well, but it seemed odd since the biceps usually tears towards the insertion point, not at the origin. It’s possible, though.

The other thing I was going to suggest was possibly bad vertebrae alignment. I know its cliched, but I was having some bad pain in my lumbar section, and after my PT popped my spine in a few places, it was virtually gone. He said that vertebra that are misaligned can cause all sorts of unusual pain issues, even though the pain may not be at or even near the spine. Weightlifting tends to throw them around a bit, but it’s fixable.

Those are my only two ideas.