T Nation

Snatch Grip High Pull Form

CT, I noticed that when I tried performing SGHP that my shoulders are not mirror images of the other at the top of the pull. My left elbow goes a little higher than my shoulder joint while my right elbow stays even with my shoulder. The bar seemed to stay even so this may be another way my shoulders exhibit an imbalance (I’ve noticed an imbalance in several other ways).

I’m not sure if this is a problem of my right shoulder lacking the flexibility of my left, or my left trap not being as active as my right trap… Any suggestions on how to possibly remedy this? Should I maybe stick to hang cleans to use with layer workouts and practice SGHP afterwards?

Is your head level or is it turned slightly toward one side?

Not trying to jack this thread, but CT have you seen any instances in which SGHP result in wrist pain? Sounds weird I know, but it almost feels like the forceful pull is somehow dislocating my hand from my wrist, if ever so slightly. Is it just a matter of getting accustomed to the lift since I really haven’t done this type of training before. Any thoughts would be welcome.

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:
Is your head level or is it turned slightly toward one side?[/quote]

Earlier today I did some practice sets and I didn’t notice my head favoring either side.

[quote]cmryan_21 wrote:

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:
Is your head level or is it turned slightly toward one side?[/quote]

Earlier today I did some practice sets and I didn’t notice my head favoring either side.[/quote]

Do you have any pain in one of your shoulders or a previous injury? The pain wouldn’t be felt in the pull but rather in bench pressing or movements like lateral raises.

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

Do you have any pain in one of your shoulders or a previous injury? The pain wouldn’t be felt in the pull but rather in bench pressing or movements like lateral raises.[/quote]

Not at the moment but my right shoulder can be aggravated by quite a few exercises and it doesn’t take much. I separated it several years ago and I suppose its never really been the same.

[quote]cmryan_21 wrote:

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

Do you have any pain in one of your shoulders or a previous injury? The pain wouldn’t be felt in the pull but rather in bench pressing or movements like lateral raises.[/quote]

Not at the moment but my right shoulder can be aggravated by quite a few exercises and it doesn’t take much. I separated it several years ago and I suppose its never really been the same.[/quote]

Yeah, the right trap is likely compensating for the right shoulder, the body is subconsciously trying to protect itself.Muscle snatches, seated DB cleans and cuban presses might help you in that regard if you focus on keeping the shoulders even when doing it. I myself had that exact problem in the past.

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

[quote]cmryan_21 wrote:

[quote]Christian Thibaudeau wrote:

Do you have any pain in one of your shoulders or a previous injury? The pain wouldn’t be felt in the pull but rather in bench pressing or movements like lateral raises.[/quote]

Not at the moment but my right shoulder can be aggravated by quite a few exercises and it doesn’t take much. I separated it several years ago and I suppose its never really been the same.[/quote]

Yeah, the right trap is likely compensating for the right shoulder, the body is subconsciously trying to protect itself.Muscle snatches, seated DB cleans and cuban presses might help you in that regard if you focus on keeping the shoulders even when doing it. I myself had that exact problem in the past.[/quote]

I was starting to think that might be the case. I noticed something similar during military presses this week but it’s much more slight with that movement. For those, my left shoulder seemed to set just a tad higher than my right shoulder joint. In the past, military pressing would usually cause me pain after a couple workouts, but military presses from pins don’t seem to bother my shoulder at all.

Regarding the SGHP, since they don’t seem to cause me any pain would it be unwise to continue performing them from a muscle building standpoint? Maybe I could try performing cuban presses after the sghp layer. Obviously if pain sets in I would need to cease doing them, but they are the money movement as you say. Or would performing them just exacerbate the existing imbalance between my shoulders?

@cmryan: I used to have a similar problem with my left shoulder & my chiropractor recommended buying a handheld massager (I got one with three different heads from Brooks Stone) and I go over my spine, color bone, sternum and with a 4 prong head then along them with a single prong head & around my chest (especially pec minor) with the four prong head while laying on a foam roller. I foam roll my chest with a medicine ball, especially the shoulder attachment area and inner part around my arm pit. I use a lacrosse ball on my upper back & a rumble roller for my traps…you can lean to the side while rolling your traps and release a lot of scar tissue. I also removed my pillow & with in a week my shoulders lay perfectly in alignment & have had no problems

@All: Same problem I noticed here, left shoulder comes up lower naturally than the right. Working on keeping them balanced. I’ve noticed while doing standing bicep curls with the straight bar my left shoulder comes into the curl more than the right, at the top of the contraction. Working again to strengthen the right bicep more as well. I know for a fact my right arm and right leg are slightly longer than one another and this has some power output issues with using one side more than the other…

[quote]sput79 wrote:
@cmryan: I used to have a similar problem with my left shoulder & my chiropractor recommended buying a handheld massager (I got one with three different heads from Brooks Stone) and I go over my spine, color bone, sternum and with a 4 prong head then along them with a single prong head & around my chest (especially pec minor) with the four prong head while laying on a foam roller. I foam roll my chest with a medicine ball, especially the shoulder attachment area and inner part around my arm pit. I use a lacrosse ball on my upper back & a rumble roller for my traps…you can lean to the side while rolling your traps and release a lot of scar tissue. I also removed my pillow & with in a week my shoulders lay perfectly in alignment & have had no problems [/quote]
Sput, thank you for the info. I foam roll every morning to try to fight lower back tightness so I guess I should add some of the foam rolling spots you’re suggesting to that regimen. I just tried foam rolling my mid back/traps with a lacrosse ball and around my pec/shoulder area with a rumble roller. Lots of popping and pain but I definitely felt better afterwards. Finding the right pillow has been a long search and I’ve yet to find it. When I had a box spring mattress and slept without a pillow I had a stiff neck within days, but now that I’ve got a different mattress I’ll give it a shot again. Regarding the massagers, do you mean something like http://www.amazon.com/The-Pressure-Positive-Company-Blue/dp/B0012136CK/ref=pd_sim_hpc_3 or the electric ones like http://www.brookstone.com/handheld-massagers?

I got the active sport handheld massager …you’re welcome