T Nation

For EC - Shoulder Recovery

Dear EC, so i was injured aabout 9 months ago in the shoulder area and I tried some of your advice in doing lots of external rotations and rows, bascially the pain has gotten a lot less , next to none (of course i havent tried heavy pressing) but when i do flat bench pressing, the weight i used to have pain doing now is fine, yet there are these horrible “clicking” noises in the shoulder area during the motion which feels like the bones are not in place…

Is this normal??


I had a first degree sepration in my right shoulder from a Judo incident gone awry. It was about 8 or 9 months before I could really use that shoulder for anything. My mom is a Physical Therapist and has an ultrasound machine which aided my recovery. The thing is, the shoulder did heal in an odd way. No clicking but the bones just don’t line up the same way in my right shoulder as they do in my left.

I’d say that clicking is ‘normal’ in that it’s what you could expect from a debilitating shoulder injury but I’d have it looked at. That clicking could be indicative of bones grinding against each other in a way they shouldn’t. Again, using a personal example, my dad injured his elbow, the injury healed nicely and he was back lifting within a month or so but, and there’s always a but, the healing process caused little bone spurs to develope in the elbow joint. When he worked the elbow it would grind those little spurs off into a fine dust. This dust eventually started to clump together and formed a couple of tiny little pebbles. So one day he’s doing flat benchs, gets the bar down to his chest and finds that he cannot straighten his arm… one of this little pebbles lodged in the joint preventing it from extending. It was a pretty simple surgery to remove them but it could have been pretty nasty.

Guess my point is, no matter how good the advice you get from folks here is, nothing beats having a qualified professional actually look at the shoulder and figure out what’s going on in there.

Normal? Definitely not?

Problematic? Tough to say.

Does it really impair performance. I know a lot of people (myself included) who get clicks all the time, yet their joints function fine. If it’s really notable and you’re concerned, an x-ray might not be a bad idea.