T Nation

BP: Shoulders Down (Bonus Mike T. Vid Included!)


#1

I’m having a ton of trouble keeping my right shoulder down on any kind of flat bench press on sets that I push hard. Once that set gets hard, I just can’t pull that shoulder down without feeling like about to pull something in my rear right shoulder. To the point that all my free weight benching is done on inclines.

I have a lot of mobility in both my shoulders. I can OH squat just fine. I can easily do shoulder dislocates with a pretty narrow grip. It’s just flat bench pressing.

I’m currently doing band pull aparts for shoulder health. I’m about to reduce bench pressing volume and in it’s place do more push ups, upper back, triceps, and shoulder isolation exercises.

For shoulder work, I was thinking emphasize rear delts in about the same plane as flat benching. So I was thinking everything with a band or pulley will be done from a low anchor/pulley. Like do face pulls anchoring the band low or reverse cable flies with a low pulley setup.

Does anyone have any other ideas? Whether it be bench press cues, warm ups, exercises, lax ball work, or what have you.

Oh yeah! A vid I stumbled on while looking for ways to solve this issue. See! It wasn’t just clickbait :slight_smile:

And shame on you if you didn’t read anything and just skipped to the bottom! Grrr!


#2

See a PT

Otherwise got a video of this happening? Seen a good massage therapist?


#3

Is this a cuing/technique issue or a physical inability like strength mobility or stability you reckon?

Maybe try the cuing route a bit see what happens


#4

I’m thinking stability and/or strength imbalance issue.

I can keep good form on easier sets with flat bench pressing.

I can keep good form on even difficult sets on an incline and, standing presses, push presses, OH squats, and snatches.

I can push sets hard on push ups of any variety too.

But it never hurts to do a refresher on form and cues so I’ll check out that vid.


#5

I read everything and didn’t watch the video.

Maybe this is part of the problem. You are loose where you should be tight. Nobody with a big bench has incredible shoulder mobility, and weightlifters generally avoid benching specifically because it can cause mobility issues for overhead lifts.

You might have tight or overactive serratus anterior. That would pull your shoulder forward.

I would do chest supported rows with a pause at the top. You could also do a sort of scapular shrug on the same setup, just hold the bar and pull your scapulas together.


#6

I was just kinda kidding about the vid thing :slight_smile:

You might be on to something regarding the mobility thing. Time to work on stabilizing and activating. Cut back on stretching.

I’ll look into the serratus anterior thing and give chest supported rows w/ a pause at the top a go.


#7

I haven’t had a chance to try the band stretch yet, but I did the rolling thing with my rumble roller and that right shoulder already feels a ton better and it’s a lot easier to retract that shoulder blade while doing some band pull aparts. While doing the pull aparts, it’s just a lot easier on that side and I don’t get this wierd uncomfortable tension while doing them. I had that ‘wierd tension’ thing going on so long I forgot it wasn’t normal haha.