T Nation

Shoulder issues and weightlifting


To preface this post, I have done a lot of reading on the issue with relation to impingement of the shoulder but not much of it seems to apply to this sport of weightlifting.

I have seen a doctor and he suspects that it's not a tear, but impingement. I have good mobility in the shoulders, even the right shoulder which is affected. I can do proper scapular wall slides and can still snatch and jerk.

However, whenever I do this my shoulder becomes very sore and inflammed. I have been stretching a lot, doing foam rolling and icing it. I have also been warming my shoulder up before any lifting and strengthening my external rotators and rotator cuffs.

I don't want to stop weightlifting and so I would appreciate any feedback to remedy this situation.

I am able to do full cleans and squat and so I am doing that. What else could I do to work on technique for the snatch? High Pulls? Also, should I switch to RDLs and front squats considering the back squat might cause furthur impingement?

Thank you.


take fish oil if you don't already. maybe look into foods that reduce vs promote inflammation, too (use the search function for this site).

does it hurt or do you feel impingement when you do any movement in particular?

have you tried taking some time off and then coming back to things once things have gotten better?

without seeing vids of your snatch it is hard to know what part of the movement you need to work on.

can you see a sports medicine doctor or rehab person or whatever who knows anything about the demands of olympic lifting?



I take about a tablespoon of a good liquid fish oil everyday.

As far as the sport-specific doctors, I will have to see.

What hurts is when I push anything over and behind my head i.e. snatches, jerks, presses and especially behind-the-jerk presses and jerks. It usually hurts after the fact.



I had this problem as well. It got to the point where I had to stop snatching for about a month. Stretching, ice, etc., all helped, but rest was the only thing that cured it. I have also started doing a high volume of rowing and pull-ups, and I think that helps a bit as well.


Pardon me if I'm being ignorant (i have the same issue, just tossing out ideas) but could lat raises help? I would imagine it could help to strengthen the deltoids and surrounding muscles further (perhaps fly exercises?) to allow for the joint/mobility to rely on the muscle more than the rotator cuff itself. Purely speculation, though.

I may have just overtrained them. I enjoyed doing power cleans and jerks (+ 1 handed dumbbell snatch jerks) so much that I couldn't stop myself from doing them for a week and a half straight each day LOL. I guess that was really just asking for some sort of injury... However, rest definitely seemed to help. I just started doing them again (yesterday) after ~5 days of rest and I'd definitely say that I've felt much better.

I'm going to start incorporating a few more exercises to hit my delts and surrounding muscles/fuller ranges of motion a bit more on days when i'm not jerking to see if that helps.


Would it not be the other way around (not wanting to do front squats) or am I misunderstanding your situation?

nvm disregard i'm retarded


Where are you in Ontario?

Take a look at mobiltywod.com and seek out the shoulder mwods. Kelly really knows his stuff.