T Nation

Benching With Separated Shoulder


I'm a high school football player and suffered a separated shoulder about a month and a half ago and I'm still having pain. It's much better than when I first injured it, but some pain still lingers from time to time. It's a grade I separation with very minimal damage. I read on a website that since it's a grade I, I can do just about anything, so long as I can tolerate it.

Should I just bear the pain and keep benching, or should I let it rest?



What do you do for your back? Also, do you do shrugs or any other upper trap work?


I follow WS4SB, so my back work changes from week to week. And yes, I do shrugs.



If it hurts, I recommend backing off the full bench presses. You are only going to continue to increase the inflammation at the AC joint if you try to "push through the pain". I'd stick to board presses, floor presses, or other variations that limit the amount of shoulder extension, which is going to be what irritates the AC joint the most. Try some push up variations too to see if they are more shoulder friendly as well.

Also, make sure you are getting plenty of scapular stabilizer work in - rhomboids, lower traps, serratus, etc. If the scapula is not sitting properly, the AC joint won't be either. Check for hypertonic/overactive upper traps, scalenes, and SCM as well, as these can lead to an elevated scapula and/or clavicle.


Agreed. Learn how to pack your shoulders. De Franco is great to get guys strong but weak in injury prevention. Work on a 3:1 pull to push ratio with a 2:1 horizontal to vertical pull ratio.

Scap retraction is key. Also, stretch your lats and stop doping shrugs. Tight traps fuck everything up, for lack of a better term!