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Dips Giving Shoulder Pain


For the past week I've had pains in my shoulders while doing dips. I have no idea why because dips are supposed to take the shoulders out, or at least I thought. The pain has worsened in the past day and I can't do any pushing exercises at all. Not sure if it is something that should be looked at or if I should just lay off for a week? Has anyone else had this happen before? What do you think?

BTW-I'm using the same parameters for all pushing/pulling exercises and even began doing external rotation exercises about a month ago.


Ummm... stop doing dips?


Are you using a wide grip? When I go out too far from shoulder width my shoulders start to really ache.


Try Phase I in 8 Weeks to Monster Shoulders [http://www.T-Nation.com/readTopic.do?id=818555] it took away my shoulder pain in several exercises. Dips included!


Dips, done correctly can be fine on the shoulders, but as far as exercises go, it is probably one of the most stressful on the shoulder joint.

If you think about it, for the most part, your body is staying pretty much stationary and your humerus is abducting posteriorly in the sagittal plane, which is where the shoulder has the least mobility out of all its ROM.

Its basically how you would rip out the joint of a chicken leg, hold the body still and just keep rotating the bone... If you have anything less than perfect form, and/or you are going very deep you can seriously mess your shoulders up.


Two things:

  1. You might be going to low on your dips. The lower you go the more "unnatural" the movement becomes. And the ramifications of this is pain.

  2. I think someone already mentioned this but its' worth another mention as I think it just might be the culprit (as usual). The dipping rack you are using is too wide for your body. Try dipping on bars that are no more than 22" apart. Naturally this will vary based upon your body siz. But I have noticed that when the dipping bars are narrowed to about 22" there is no more pain.

Make sure that you don't do any pressing until all the pain is gone. Use ice, it's great stuff and not just because it's free.

Good Luck,



I'd injured my shoulder with dips as well. After being sidelined for a couple weeks, I started up with overhead pressing instead of dips. Also, done much of the cuban press, which works the rear of the shoulders.

Shoulders feel largely better now, but I have yet to return to dips, for fear of further injury. There's other movements which work the same muscles. Good luck!