T Nation

Sore Forearms After Curls


#1

I've had this problem for a while and believe it originated from doing preacher curls. I googled it and thought if I cut out doing preacher curls and heavy barbell curls the issue might resolve itself. I still have the same problem a few weeks after, I don't dare to lift heavier weights because of the intense sharp pain I get, which is at its worst when I'm to put the weight down and let go of it, then it just feels like it resonates throughout my entire forearm. Does this sound familiar to anyone or do you know how I can get past this?


#2

I have this same problem and was wondering what it was. I don’t particularly care for bodybuilding type work that much, so I don’t do curls often, but I went on a bicep specialization protocol this past 3 weeks and anytime I did curls with a barbell or ez bar, my forearms hurt badly. It was the outside of my forearms, pretty much the line between my elbow and wrist. It hurt while I was doing it but it especially hurt/had a shooting pain through that spot when I let go of the bar.


#3

Start doing DB curls exclusively for a while then slowly incorporate the use of bars again once it gets better, but always alternate between the two. I had the exact same issue, did that, and now I don’t. Now, as long as I don’t do curls with a bar more than once a week for too many sets I’m totally fine. I always stick with EZ bar though, never straight bar.

I may be mistaken but I believe it is a form of tendonitis that comes from the tendons in your wrist and forearm not being able to rotate naturally through the motion because gripping the bar prevents that, but using DBs will allow you freedom of movement through your entire ROM and alleviate the problem. Using an EZ bar is less stressful because the hands are slightly more neutral than in a straight bar where they are fully supinated and that lengthens the tendons the most and puts them in a position to potentially become inflamed with over use.
*Again, not sure if ^that^ is spot on, but either way… Just DBs for a while, no bars, and you’re golden.


#4

I had this same problem a few years back. I noticed through trial and error that it was caused by a quick release of heavier weights doing curls. I started to VERY SLOWLY unclench my fist after curls (after putting the weight down). When I did this, it would no longer hurt and it eventually healed. Every now and again I forget and release my grip too quickly, and I can tell it starts to hurt again. I’m sure I injured something by my quick releases, and I suspect you may have as well. Give the super-slow release trick a try and let me know if it works for you.


#5

Alright thanks a lot guys. Yah I have been doing dumbell curls and I find no pain whatsoever using dumbells so it’s all good :). I’ll try your technique davidcox1 and get back to you.


#6

I had this… I ignored it most of the time, and the pain came and went seemingly randomly.

When I started working forearms directly doing wrist curls it strangely went away forever. That might be a coincidence, but it makes sense that it hurts if your forearm is a weak link in the chain when doing barbell curls.


#7

[quote]davidcox1 wrote:
I had this same problem a few years back. I noticed through trial and error that it was caused by a quick release of heavier weights doing curls. I started to VERY SLOWLY unclench my fist after curls (after putting the weight down). When I did this, it would no longer hurt and it eventually healed. Every now and again I forget and release my grip too quickly, and I can tell it starts to hurt again. I’m sure I injured something by my quick releases, and I suspect you may have as well. Give the super-slow release trick a try and let me know if it works for you.[/quote]

I had the same issue and came to the same conclusion. Hoping it won’t popup again, although currently I am not doing barbell curls.


#8

if this only tends to happen using underhand grips, it sounds like the problem i have

all I did was cut out straight bar curls completely, and stopped doing EZ curls for a long time (although EZ cable curls weren’t too bad for some reason, so I put up with a slight amount of pain there because they worked well)

just try and stick with dumbells for now, and any other curling movement which doesn’t cause an issue. These days I can do EZ curls without a problem and use this arm curl machine thing there’s no way i would have been able to use 6 months ago for instance, so taking some time off from doing that stuff seemed to help, but i know if i ever did straight bar curls the problem would come back, even things like chinups would bring it back (basically anything with an underhand grip on a straight bar)

I do that slow release thing, basically just to minimize pain when putting down weight, but it never removes it completely (at least for me) and I don’t feel it healed the issue at all, since i did it for ages and the issue didn’t get any better, lol


#9

[quote]davidcox1 wrote:
I had this same problem a few years back. I noticed through trial and error that it was caused by a quick release of heavier weights doing curls. I started to VERY SLOWLY unclench my fist after curls (after putting the weight down). When I did this, it would no longer hurt and it eventually healed. Every now and again I forget and release my grip too quickly, and I can tell it starts to hurt again. I’m sure I injured something by my quick releases, and I suspect you may have as well. Give the super-slow release trick a try and let me know if it works for you.[/quote]

Good post, same for me.

No pain on DBs/cables, less on EZ curls, lots of pain on BB.


#10

I found that massaging the muscle that runs just on the edge of your outer forearm bone, the one that’s closer to your extensors, helps a lot, and targeting the forearm muscle that assists the bicep in curling (I forget the name) with exercises like hammer curls, worked too. I think it’s an imbalance, coupled with overuse, that a lot of people get.

Best of luck with it.


#11

Thanks a lot guys. Curiously the slow release thing works. It was hilarious today at gym when my friend was curling and all of a sudden he had the same problem.


#12

[quote]Webbykun wrote:
Thanks a lot guys. Curiously the slow release thing works. It was hilarious today at gym when my friend was curling and all of a sudden he had the same problem.[/quote]

A new pandemic perhaps?


#13

It’s a newb thing. Do the dumbell curls for a while but every now and then add some barbell curls. There are small tendons and other connective tissues in your forearms that get taxed from the fixed position the barbell puts your wrist in. It will go away with time. Wrapping your wrists may help down the line also when your weights get heavier.


#14

[quote]davidcox1 wrote:

[quote]Webbykun wrote:
Thanks a lot guys. Curiously the slow release thing works. It was hilarious today at gym when my friend was curling and all of a sudden he had the same problem.[/quote]

A new pandemic perhaps?[/quote]

Only if by “pandemic” you mean the fact that all of our long bones are elastic to some degree and what you all are feeling is the bone returning to its original state after putting a heavy weight down.

The cure?

Get stronger and develop more bone density over time.


#15

[quote]Professor X wrote:

[quote]davidcox1 wrote:

[quote]Webbykun wrote:
Thanks a lot guys. Curiously the slow release thing works. It was hilarious today at gym when my friend was curling and all of a sudden he had the same problem.[/quote]

A new pandemic perhaps?[/quote]

Only if by “pandemic” you mean the fact that all of our long bones are elastic to some degree and what you all are feeling is the bone returning to its original state after putting a heavy weight down.

The cure?

Get stronger and develop more bone density over time.
[/quote]

So basically you’re saying to “do more curls”?

Something a bit more prescriptive would be helpful here seeing as doing something so unusually painful doesn’t sound like the brightest of ideas.


#16

I had the same issue, though with time it has gone. I would stick with the straight bar, it works biceps more, than EZ, or at least I’d say.

With time and progress, the pain’ll gone. In my case I HAD to stick with BBcurls, as I found that DBs were inferior in the “feel”.


#17

I also used to get this. I changed the position of my elbows on the pad and the pain went.


#18

How About all you wonderful people use weight you can handle until you can hoist more weight??? I know I know…saying to lift within your own physical limits until you get stronger is a sin around here but guess what? It might actually help…and oh…what X said…curl more…with weight you CAN handle…


#19

[quote]BONEZ217 wrote:
It’s a newb thing. Do the dumbell curls for a while but every now and then add some barbell curls. There are small tendons and other connective tissues in your forearms that get taxed from the fixed position the barbell puts your wrist in. It will go away with time. Wrapping your wrists may help down the line also when your weights get heavier. [/quote]

This too


#20

I WAS curling with weight I can handle. I bought some Vitamin D and Calicum tablets hope they help a little.