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Cressey Prime Time: 8/29 and 9/1

EC, what are some potential “issues” if you are noticeably stronger when starting from a neutral position on a bench and doing pronation with a leverage bar as opposed to when doing supination?

[quote]Eric Cressey wrote:

Give me an idea of what’s going on with your shoulders and we’ll get you fixed up.[/quote]

All presses hurt like hell, especially overhead and dips. My right shoulder is all fixed now. My joint doctor said that whatever I did to fix my right shoulder, do the same thing to the left! I don’t know what I did! I thought some rest would help, but it hasn’t.

Thanks.

[quote]bikemike wrote:
Eric Cressey wrote:

Give me an idea of what’s going on with your shoulders and we’ll get you fixed up.

All presses hurt like hell, especially overhead and dips. My right shoulder is all fixed now. My joint doctor said that whatever I did to fix my right shoulder, do the same thing to the left! I don’t know what I did! I thought some rest would help, but it hasn’t.

Thanks.[/quote]

Probably just impingement. Here goes:

  1. Most people will have to can benching variations and for a few weeks. Overhead pressing is a definitely no-no, and you’ll probably want to stay away from pullups and pulldowns as well as upright shrugs (your lats and traps are too strong for your rhomboids/mid traps). Some people even have trouble with the straight bar for squatting.

  2. Lots of rows, external rotations, prone trap raises, and face pulls (I know…blah, blah, blah).

  3. Ice like crazy. Get ART.

  4. When you feel like you’re ready to bench, slap yourself in the face and tell yourself that you’re not ready yet and give it one more week.

  5. After that week, return to benching with something that adheres to the following progressions:

Pushups > Low Cable Crossovers > DB Floor Press > Decline DB Press > Board Press or Floor Press > Decline Barbell Press > Close Grip Bench > Regular Grip

Isometric (pushups) > Long Eccentric > Regular Speed > Dynamic Effort

It would also help to put on a bench shirt as you return to the barbell. Make sure that your protraction, elevation, and internal rotation training is “counteracted” by your retraction, depression, and external rotation training. In your case, you should do MORE of the latter. In other words…

Bench variations + pull-ups/pulldowns + shrugs = rows + prone trap raises + face pulls + external rotations.

Because that “=” was a “>” for a loooong time, you’re going to need to go to a “<” for a bit.

I’m having a hard time picturing what you mean. I’m familiar with a leverage bar, but can you go into a bit more detail?

Thanks!

[quote]T-Bone81 wrote:
EC, what are some potential “issues” if you are noticeably stronger when starting from a neutral position on a bench and doing pronation with a leverage bar as opposed to when doing supination?[/quote]

[quote]Eric Cressey wrote:
If you’re wearing Nike Shox, take them off and beat yourself with them; shoes with that much heel lift are the worst thing anyone (especially you right now) can have on their feet.
[/quote]

I love you Eric, I don’t own Nike Shox, and I said something very similar to all my friends who bought them :stuck_out_tongue:

lol - I currently wear watersocks sandals or some k-swiss shoes with the insoles taken out. So I know about the effects of high heeled shoes :smiley:

thanks for the tips, will get my but in gear… or not be a neanderthal no more… err right… on it

Wow, that’s a thoughtful response. Thank you. I’ll tell all my friends in the gym about slapping me in the face. They’ll be more than happy to do that.

http://images.t-nation.com/forum_images/./1/.1125367583720.photo10.jpg

Maybe a picture will help a bit more than my words

[quote]Eric Cressey wrote:
I’m having a hard time picturing what you mean. I’m familiar with a leverage bar, but can you go into a bit more detail?

Thanks!

T-Bone81 wrote:
EC, what are some potential “issues” if you are noticeably stronger when starting from a neutral position on a bench and doing pronation with a leverage bar as opposed to when doing supination?

[/quote]

A picture of Sully? Geez…my eyes are bleeding! (kidding, of course; he’s a good friend).

You should be stronger in pronation on this movement. Pronation is linked to external rotation of the humerus in functional movement schems, and internal rotation is always going to be stronger than external rotation.

I’d still be training the supination hard, though. I just don’t know of any strength norms in this regard, unfortunately.

[quote]T-Bone81 wrote:
Maybe a picture will help a bit more than my words

Eric Cressey wrote:
I’m having a hard time picturing what you mean. I’m familiar with a leverage bar, but can you go into a bit more detail?

Thanks!

T-Bone81 wrote:
EC, what are some potential “issues” if you are noticeably stronger when starting from a neutral position on a bench and doing pronation with a leverage bar as opposed to when doing supination?

[/quote]

Okay, folks, I’m out for the evening. Thanks for your questions!

I’m currently trying to recover from quadriceps tendonitis in both knees. It’s developed over the last six months. I used to do very little squatting, and about a year ago started doing a lot of low-rep deep squatting and Olympic lifts. Six months later I started feeling pain above my knees on deep squats. Stupidly, I trained though it, and it got worse. Now I’ve laid off squatting completely (though I’m still doing deadlift variations and some power cleans and power snatches, which don’t cause pain because they don’t involve as much knee flexion).

My orthopedist put me on prescription anti-inflammatories, and I’m getting ART. If I can get the pain to clear up, what do you recommend to prevent the tendonitis from recurring? I’m particularly interested in the types of exercises and set/rep schemes that will help strengthen the tendons without re-injuring them.

Thanks!

EC,

I’ve very recently started working on powerlifting with the goal of just getting strong as all hell in mind.

Anyways, when I squat, my sticking point is a little different than anything you described, but sort’ve a mix of them all.

What happens is my legs begin by driving my ass up and then I end up sort’ve doing a goodmorning with the weight, it’s weird.

What to do?

EC, I seem to have pretty tight/weak hips, I have started doing weighted situps and some spread eagel situps (100 a day T, Th , Sat) Do you have any ideas on some new exercises I could use to strengthen my hips? I really dont want to have my tight hips be a reason that I miss a squat at a meet or have them interfear in strongman events.
Thanks
Will42

Strengthen the muscles working at the hips; they’ll help to take some of the load off the quads.

FYI, I’m not a fan of the anti-inflammatory approach. I’ll leave it at that.

When working back into things, try 3x15 long eccentric body weight only squats throughout the day everyday. Once you get back into the gym, start with light weight and long eccentrics. GRADUALLY add volume and resistance.

[quote]twoolf wrote:
I’m currently trying to recover from quadriceps tendonitis in both knees. It’s developed over the last six months. I used to do very little squatting, and about a year ago started doing a lot of low-rep deep squatting and Olympic lifts. Six months later I started feeling pain above my knees on deep squats. Stupidly, I trained though it, and it got worse. Now I’ve laid off squatting completely (though I’m still doing deadlift variations and some power cleans and power snatches, which don’t cause pain because they don’t involve as much knee flexion).

My orthopedist put me on prescription anti-inflammatories, and I’m getting ART. If I can get the pain to clear up, what do you recommend to prevent the tendonitis from recurring? I’m particularly interested in the types of exercises and set/rep schemes that will help strengthen the tendons without re-injuring them.

Thanks![/quote]

Weak glutes, and you probably fall more along the lines of the long legs, short torso crowd.

Check out our “Get Your Butt in Gear” and “Neanderthal No More” series. Gluteal dysfunction is very common.

[quote]CU AeroStallion wrote:
EC,

I’ve very recently started working on powerlifting with the goal of just getting strong as all hell in mind.

Anyways, when I squat, my sticking point is a little different than anything you described, but sort’ve a mix of them all.

What happens is my legs begin by driving my ass up and then I end up sort’ve doing a goodmorning with the weight, it’s weird.

What to do?[/quote]

If your hip flexors are tight, sit-ups are the worst thing you can be doing right now.

See my recommendation to the guy with weak glutes in the previous post; that stuff applies to you, too. Stretch out the entire hip region with the stretches outlined in Mike’s “Hardcore Stretching: Part II” and work on getting your glutes to fire. You’ll see marked differences in less than two weeks.

[quote]Will42 wrote:
EC, I seem to have pretty tight/weak hips, I have started doing weighted situps and some spread eagel situps (100 a day T, Th , Sat) Do you have any ideas on some new exercises I could use to strengthen my hips? I really dont want to have my tight hips be a reason that I miss a squat at a meet or have them interfear in strongman events.
Thanks
Will42[/quote]

Thanks again for the reply. When I said that I retract my shoulders, I meant that I squeeze my shoulder blades together with my mid traps. As for bar placement, I attempt to hit the lower chest, if I go closer to my belly I can’t budge the weight.

I live in Pittsburgh, so if you know any buddies down here that would be awesome. Just warn them that I really don’t move much iron (yet).

I would definately post a video if I was technologically current, but my computer sucks. Maybe sometime in the future though.

Later.

[quote]Eric Cressey wrote:
It’s definitely a technique issue. I’m not sure what you mean by “retract the shoulders.”

Where is the bar touching? Neck? Nipple line? Slightly below? Belly? My guess is that you aren’t tucking your elbows enough.

It could just be that you’re so accustomed to benching bodybuilder style that you want to flare the elbows too early and get back to your comfort zone. That would make a lot of sense. If it’s the case, I’d drop the weight down, do a ton of technique practice, and try to get around some experienced lifters to set you straight. Where are you located? I’ll see if I can hook you up with some good powerlifters.

Another option would be to get a video and post it here; your call.

TopHeavy wrote:
I have a question about bench pressing. I have excellent control when I bench if I only retract my shoulders, but if I retract and depress my scapula it feels like my upper arm rotates internally.

This causes the bar to drift towards my feet, then I must abduct my shoulders to pull the bar back in the proper position. This forces my forearms to twist toward my head. None of this is conscious effort, it just happens. Basically my form just goes down the crapper. Only if I retract my scapula.

Am I mistaken in my form? Should I just retract without depressing? I previously “shoulder benched” flat back with flared elbows (stupid), maybe my body is just used to that groove?

I do external rotations movements 2-3x a week, usually 2-4 sets of 8-12 reps.

I am curious if you think this is more of a technical issue, or is it more a muscular imbalance problem. I understand that diagnosing the exact cause is nearly impossible online, but everything in your deadlift article is spot on for me, so that should give you some idea of my build.

Thank you in advance (I won’t be at my computer much longer).

Later.

[/quote]

You’re not too far from Ohio; there’s sure to be quite a few people in that area who can help you out. It’s a great state in which to be if you’re a PLer.

[quote]TopHeavy wrote:
Thanks again for the reply. When I said that I retract my shoulders, I meant that I squeeze my shoulder blades together with my mid traps. As for bar placement, I attempt to hit the lower chest, if I go closer to my belly I can’t budge the weight.

I live in Pittsburgh, so if you know any buddies down here that would be awesome. Just warn them that I really don’t move much iron (yet).

I would definately post a video if I was technologically current, but my computer sucks. Maybe sometime in the future though.

Later.
[/quote]

I was afraid it was gonna be that or tight hip flexors as I’ve been trying to correct that imbalance all summer long. It’s gotten better, but it’s still there.

I’ll check out the ‘get your butt in gear’ and maybe that’ll help with this pelvic tilt action I can’t seem to get rid of.

thanks EC

[quote]Eric Cressey wrote:
Weak glutes, and you probably fall more along the lines of the long legs, short torso crowd.

Check out our “Get Your Butt in Gear” and “Neanderthal No More” series. Gluteal dysfunction is very common.

CU AeroStallion wrote:
EC,

I’ve very recently started working on powerlifting with the goal of just getting strong as all hell in mind.

Anyways, when I squat, my sticking point is a little different than anything you described, but sort’ve a mix of them all.

What happens is my legs begin by driving my ass up and then I end up sort’ve doing a goodmorning with the weight, it’s weird.

What to do?

[/quote]

Weak glutes and tight hip flexors go hand-in-hand.

[quote]CU AeroStallion wrote:
I was afraid it was gonna be that or tight hip flexors as I’ve been trying to correct that imbalance all summer long. It’s gotten better, but it’s still there.

I’ll check out the ‘get your butt in gear’ and maybe that’ll help with this pelvic tilt action I can’t seem to get rid of.

thanks EC

Eric Cressey wrote:
Weak glutes, and you probably fall more along the lines of the long legs, short torso crowd.

Check out our “Get Your Butt in Gear” and “Neanderthal No More” series. Gluteal dysfunction is very common.

CU AeroStallion wrote:
EC,

I’ve very recently started working on powerlifting with the goal of just getting strong as all hell in mind.

Anyways, when I squat, my sticking point is a little different than anything you described, but sort’ve a mix of them all.

What happens is my legs begin by driving my ass up and then I end up sort’ve doing a goodmorning with the weight, it’s weird.

What to do?

[/quote]

[quote]Eric Cressey wrote:
If your hip flexors are tight, sit-ups are the worst thing you can be doing right now.

See my recommendation to the guy with weak glutes in the previous post; that stuff applies to you, too. Stretch out the entire hip region with the stretches outlined in Mike’s “Hardcore Stretching: Part II” and work on getting your glutes to fire. You’ll see marked differences in less than two weeks.[/quote]

EC,
I also have very tight hips. I will read the articles you have suggested and start to really work on stretching out my hips. When you say that you will see “marked differences in less than two weeks” is that referring to hip flexibility, glute strength (resulting in a bigger squat/dead), or both? thanks,
TR