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Front Shoulder Pain After Deadlifts

Ok so I’m a 39 year old female trying to increase weight of deadlift, RDL probably is and I"m only lifting now 45 pounds. But I notice yesterday, my traps are sore and I have overly tight traps which cause me headaches so I don’t really want to work them out at all if possible, which I know is not possible. And I have like a nerve or tendon inflamed right at the pec major trigger point in front of my shoulder (I hope I explained it well.) and it feels like a tendon that is going to break or something like that. And I get it if I do shoulder pass through, I get this same pain. So here’s my question:
What is this pain?? What causes it and what muscles need to be strengthed so that when I do deadlifts, I’m not overusing the traps and this pec major area, becaues I don’t think that should be hurting after deadlifts right?? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

Sounds like a impingement… go get it evaluated .

Front of shoulder pain from deadlifts is probably the biceps tendon. I do a set or two for biceps to warm and stretch them out before every workout. Also, do your deadlifts with both hands over the bar, not one over and one under as long…as grip strength allows.

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Its not on the shoulder itself, but under the shoulder bone, either teres major, subclavius area or pec minor. Just to make sure you understand the area.

Can you post a video?

With only 45lbs are you shrugging your shoulders at the top of the lift?

Is the bar drifting too far out?

How much pressing do you do?

How much rowing?

Working on form and strengthening my back helped me a lot.

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I can definitely postr a video if you promise to look for it on Tuesday. Which angles are best? Rowing always has me get super tight traps so i stopped everything.
Dont think shrugging my shoulders.

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That would great!
Side angle would be best.

Thanks so much. I truly appreciate it

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I had another thread last week about after my deadlifts, which is only 45 pounds, I experience tight and sore upper traps, which I’m trying to avoid and tight pecs, pain like a ripped tendon but it goes away 3 days later, right above my arm pits and I wanted to know if it’s from my form in any way or what to focus on more. @ChickenLittle

Here’s the link. I appreciate any and all useful comments!

Do you know why your pecs are tight and your upper traps are sore? You’re doing deadlifts the right way. You’re completely engaging your lats in the movement, and your traps - not your biceps - are bearing the load of the weight. Keep on doing what you’re doing, it’s working just fine.

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Ok thanks for that vote of confidence. I guess since I suffer from tight traps due to stress, im trying to learn how to not have them activate in every back exercise I do. I eant to balance out with more strength. In my rhomboids. Any ideas on how? So sore or tight pecs is ok. But i was having pain like a tendon or ligament i dont know right under my shoulder bone where pecs start

I don’t see anything glaringly wrong. Have you tried band pull aparts? Or Dan John Batwings? Or even some weighted stretches to stretch your pecs? The way I finally got things in my upper body loosened up was a set of rings. Just playing with them. Stretching my arms out and back, hanging upside down etc.

Let’s ask @FlatsFarmer what he thinks. He is reallllly good at figuring this stuff out.

You could always try working a lacrosse ball into your traps and pecs. It’ll hurt at first but if they’re all tight and gummed up itll loosen them a bunch.

It looks like you might be bending your arm at the elbow a little, and if so then the pain you are feeling could be where the bicep inserts near the shoulder.

If you watch your video and pause at about :20 or :29 where you are at the bottom of the movement, what you see is that the bar is over your midfoot and in contact with your shins as it should be. However it is not under your shoulder blade, and the only way I can see that happening is if you are slightly bending your elbow. The elbow bend is even slightly visible, although the sleeves obscure it a little.

The fix can be as simple as just focusing more on straightening your arms and letting them hang down. Think about pushing the bar away from you while you’re holding it.

If you apply this adjustment and make no other changes then the bar will float away from the shins more because of where your shoulder blades are positioned. This will also be a concern, so you will want to also adjust how far back you move your hips during the rep to keep the bar over your foot.


Thanks. That was a good catch. But how would I have to move my hips, farther back? Ive always been told that the bar should be against the shins at all times, so I might have to play with this new position with no weight.

Hopefully flats will chime in but thanks. I will work on more stretching. They get tight just using the compu. My traps. I dont even do upper body anymore because even when I do face pulls, my traps come in

You’re correct about the bar touching your shins.

It is really a minor adjustment, you would only need to bend the knees slightly more and your hips would end up far enough behind you that your shoulder blades stay over the bar and the bar would stay in contact with your shins.

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You explained it perfectly. I will work on that. Great job, thanks!

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I think I agree with Facepalm, it does look like your arms are bent. This would totally put pressure on your traps, pec minor and biceps.

It’s hard to tell exactly from the side video, but maybe your hands are too close together? If you move them out a little bit will your arms go straighter?

Either way, I like the idea of straightening your arms more. I like the cue of pushing the bar away, trying to get the arms straighter and the lats more involved. You could also think about trying to turn your arms so your elbows point back behind you, as a way to straighten your arms and get tension in your lats not pecs. It’s hard to tell in the video, but it looks like your elbows are turned out, almost pointing to the sides.


It’s so hard to figure out form stuff!! And it can be so frustrating!

My input would be that you look like you might benefit from benting your knees a bit pushing your feet down more on the pick up, to kinda bring those hips down a bit, and thus your chest less in front of the bar on the initial lift.

To me it appears that you are doing a stiff legged dl, which if that is your goal then that’s cool too! And then my advice is not helpful!

I can also say sometimes our bodies just will not allow us to do certain exercises effectively or with out pain ,
due to injuries, body lenghts, etc …so if you are really struggling to figure it out know that there are tons of other options! Maybe a neutral grip dl such as using a trap bar ( I know the name says trap right in it! Yet different bodies get different activation based on unique leverages) might help not trigger the pain.

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