T Nation

Elbow Pain - Aches and Pains from Heavy Pressing?


I'm curious to hear how you all handle elbow pain from heavy pressing? I feel like I've been hit with a baseball bat up and down both my elbows lately. I just switched from 5/3/1 to westside so my structural system probably isn't quite used to the higher % of max that westside follows compared to 5/3/1. Currently I wear non-supportive elbow sleeves to keep them warm and always warm up but anyone else have any tips/tricks to keeping elbows healthy and not feeling so god awful?


-get a massage
-forearm stretching (take all your fingers and pull them back, both side.)
-play with your elbows, poke inside with your fingers

That is what works for me. I am not an expert. Keep in mind that this work for my problem which comes from pressing and playing hockey.


I used to have a lot of pain on the outside of my elbows that would radiate to my pinky and ring finger. My elbows have been pain free for a number of years, which I attribute to high volume chins (sometimes 75 a day). I would use ice and ibuprofen, and consider backing off on pressing. If backing off on weight is not an option, I would experiment with different grips (don't know how much you mix that up), or elbow positions (tucked vs flared, to an extent), and see if that makes a difference.

It sucks backing off, but sometimes it's necessary. I heard a snap-crackle-pop in my lower back when I was deadlifting on monday that immediately I knew was not good (I heard it over my headphones). I'm in the middle of a few days off from everything, but hopefully back next week. I've been watching a lot of instructional videos in the meantime to give myself focal points when I get back, so it's not all a loss.

Hope you figure your elbows out. Here's some bench stuff you've probably watched before:



I just ate a double hamburger, and it was awesome. I love being above 200lbs.


Keep wearing the non supportive sleeves (I do almost every pressing day if I am not in the shirt) and try out glucosamine chondroiton (spell check that). Supplementing that helps my joints, particularly my elbows, tremendously.




Sadly no backing off. I'm gearing up for my meet April 2nd and bringing my bench up is definitely a priority, and it's definitely going well. I change grips regularly varying from close grip to my competition grip and everything in between. I'll have to get back on glucosomine chondroitoin, maybe some SAM-E as well as MSM. All should help to some extent. I rarely do any skull crushing movements due to the intense pain I get from those but lately just the pressing itself has been pretty rough. Guess I'll be getting a bucket of ice and goin with that for now.


If you aren't already, wear the elbow sleeves on squat days too. I thought it was my pressing days that were messing with my elbows when it was really the heavy squatting that was making them sore.


Omega-3's will be your Godsend. Great for joints. They keep me going and they're just great for overall health. 3,000-5,000 mg a day should help.



use a neoprene elbowsupport,keeps the joint warm,and use omega3.when it gets bad i used nsaid wich helps alot,but do to sides(rapid heartbeat) i tried pills with gingerrootextrakt,and it help.gingerroot is antiimflamatory.this things keeps me pressing heavy.


ice after presssing
dot press heavy for a while..you cant compesated that by doing high rep work


Doing some of what's been said will help you manage it until the meet. The best thing I ever did for my elbows was to run a cycle of 5/3/1 using Fat Gripz on just about everything. It should be noted, though, that I was only dealing with pain at the medial epicondyle. If you find yourself in a similar situation, this is worth a shot.


I always wear them on any day of lifting.

I'm upwards of 6-7g a day.

I'll have to pull my fatgripz out and see how that works out.


Here are a few things that I find helpful.

Take a wide false grip when squatting. Don't pause benches in training very often. Double the volume on upper body pulling movements (2:1 ratio of pulls to pushes). Deadlift every other week. Get massage work. Ice after training. Acupuncture.

AAS use also helps a ton. I always run test and a heavy oral (dbol, abombs) before meets. The water retention and faster healing time works wonders for my elbows.


also dont do curls(specially reverse curls) or skull crushers

also will be good to knwo when it hurts the more it is when benching, then stop going heavy on it if is from pressing over the head stop going heavy on it

my elbows used too hurt at the beginning of teh year so i stop benching(or going too heavy) and just did overhead press until they were better

pressing only once a week also helped me


I dno't do reverse curls or skull crushers. This last two waves of training have been geared around bringing up my tricep strength as it was a weak point in my bench. I've seen great results the last few waves because of it but man it's beating me up.

Set a 50 lb PR earlier this week on incline press and having very little issue locking things out that I used to struggle with. I need to keep lifting heavy and pushing through. Hoping that I can get my bench up to give me a shot at an elite total for my first meet in April.


i used to have elbow issues. i stay away from any bar curls, low bar squatting, close grip benching and only do extensions sparingly. bicep work is done with each arm independently. i've also been doing cambered bar squats and safety bar squats. all these things have spared my elbows.


I've found light db curling supersetted with light triceps pushdowns helped me a ton when I had elbow tendonitus. Ever since I trained my biceps every week after it healed, I've never had a problem again.

I had to lay off the accommodating resistance for bench too.


Yeah, antagonist movements. Bicep movements aka the curls. The stronger your biceps are the less likely to have injury with your triceps or elbows.


My biceps are quite strong, especially compared to my triceps. I don't currently have access to a cambered or SSB bars so that option is out. I don't do any barbell curling all of it is done with dumbbells. Guess I'll have to do a little less CGP board pressing.


My left elbow was aching something fierce, I thought I had something wrong with it. Then I realized I was just leaning against it too hard on an uncushioned chair arm while surfing TN all day. Ooops.