T Nation

Shoulder Imbalance?


#1

I have seemed to develop some type of problem with my left shoulder over the past few months. It is more rolled forward/inward then my right and i cant pull the shoulder blade on my left side together with my right correctly.

Its come to the point where i cant even do bench press,shoulder press, pull ups or any bilateral exercise because i will be holding the weight uneven and crooked. ill post a link some pictures below explaining what im talking about.

Another thing too is that if I lie with my back flat across a surface, my right shoulder blade will be pushing into the ground, and my left wont even my touching the ground. Could this be a postural problem of some sort? What course of action should i take to fix this problem?

Pics: http://i.imgur.com/Ju5OggD.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/F5LfntW.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/3oncyLb.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/wIc0Amx.jpg
Left: http://i.imgur.com/Ra5XVOL.jpg
Right: http://i.imgur.com/ia2d4EE.jpg


#2

1 Arm Everything! Rows, pulldowns, shrugs, overhead press, bench press, incline. 1 arm dumbbell push press. All angles! Start with the left side. Do your all your sets/reps, then match it with the right.

Sidebends. 1 Arm Farmer’s Walk. Walking with the dumbbell locked out overhead. Lunges.

Tons of upper back and rotator cuff stability work. Scarecrows, cuban press with dumbbells, seated dumbbell cleans, shrugs with dumbbells.

Right now, you left and right side don’t work in symmetry, so all bilateral moves are going to make things worse. You’ve got to make a conscious effort to get yourself lined up straight. Then, when you do your one arm lifts, you’ve got to force your body to stay lined up “square” and symmetrical.

Find the least challenging moves, the ones that you can do while holding your position. Maybe even machines at first.
So a progression could go like…

Seated Machine Press, 1 Arm
Seated Dumbbell Press, 1 Arm
Half Kneeling 1 Arm Press
Standing 1 Arm Press
1 Arm Push Press

Here’s an awesome shoulder warm up from Diesel Crew

Blast straps, rings, or TRX straps are great too.

How are your hips and feet? Are they even, or out of whack also.


#3

[quote]FlatsFarmer wrote:
1 Arm Everything! Rows, pulldowns, shrugs, overhead press, bench press, incline. 1 arm dumbbell push press. All angles! Start with the left side. Do your all your sets/reps, then match it with the right.

Sidebends. 1 Arm Farmer’s Walk. Walking with the dumbbell locked out overhead. Lunges.

Tons of upper back and rotator cuff stability work. Scarecrows, cuban press with dumbbells, seated dumbbell cleans, shrugs with dumbbells.

Right now, you left and right side don’t work in symmetry, so all bilateral moves are going to make things worse. You’ve got to make a conscious effort to get yourself lined up straight. Then, when you do your one arm lifts, you’ve got to force your body to stay lined up “square” and symmetrical.

Find the least challenging moves, the ones that you can do while holding your position. Maybe even machines at first.
So a progression could go like…

Seated Machine Press, 1 Arm
Seated Dumbbell Press, 1 Arm
Half Kneeling 1 Arm Press
Standing 1 Arm Press
1 Arm Push Press

Here’s an awesome shoulder warm up from Diesel Crew

Blast straps, rings, or TRX straps are great too.

How are your hips and feet? Are they even, or out of whack also.[/quote]

Thanks for the awesome reply, ill definitely have to give 1 arm exercises a go. I think that could definitely help out the imbalance. Also im pretty sure my feet and hips are even, at least no noticeable imbalances :smiley:


#4

The above advice may help, but there’s a chance the issue has a deeper cause. Without diagnosing you (I’m not a physical therapist), I suggest you look into the work of the Postural Restoration Institute… Particularly breathing exercises that focus on drawing air into your upper back (“posterior mediastinum”).

You can also Google the term “scapular dyskinesia” to explore other possible treatment options, most notably stretching/ massaging the internal rotators of your shoulder (pecs, lats, teres major) and strengthening your low traps, seratus anterior, and external rotators. Finally, I’d explore the possibility that your jaw sits asymmetrically or you clench your teeth on one side. It sounds strange, but it is worth considering. Best of luck to you.


#5

I had this problem in the past. Farmer carries with perfect posture (shoulder blades back and down, chest up, chin tucked) really helped me.