T Nation

Rotator Cuff Injury & Returning to Deadlifting


So I re-injured my rotator cuff Sunday night (teres minor pulled). This is, of course, right at the end of my deload week as I was gearing up for heavy deads. Figgers...

Question: Who here has had an RC issue and does deadlifts? Suggestions? I use a trap bar. Also, is it possible that my recent addition of shrugs with a trap bar might have contributed to this?

Thanks in Advance,

-- jj


Never had RC issues (right leg...whole other story but this thread is about you).

Regarding your trap bar shrugs, it very well could have contributed. The upper traps (what I presume you were targeting when doing shrugs) elevate the scaps. Most cases of RC problems involve weak scapular retractors (rhomboids, mid traps) and depressors (lower traps). Of course, you also need to strengthen the external rotators (teres minor, infraspinatus).

Although it's true the dead lift and trap bar dead will target the muscles I mentioned, if someone has a history of injury such as yours, they should most likely: 1) minimize strengthening of the overactive muscles (which, in your case, strongly appears to be upper traps) and;2) target the under utilized muscles directly (band work, W's, Y's, face pulls, etc.).