T Nation

Tearing a Muscle

What exactly does this mean, how does this happen and what can I do to prevent this from happening? Sounds horrible but everyone seems to have a war story…

Now see here ya nose wiping hair comber! I have a war story for ye!

Back in Edinburgh, we had a coal miners strike! All we wanted were hats with a wee light on top! Then one day the mine collapsed! No one made it out alive! Not…Even…forbesie!

Many ways to tear a muscle/tendon…

-> Flat bench with elbows out at 90 degree, going all the way down (and often without retracted shoulder blades)… Pec tears or shoulder injuries(bicep tendon issues etc) happen all the time with that one… Even during warm-ups.

-> Preacher curls, bouncing/jerking out of the bottom from a straight or overextended arm -> Bicep tears/forearm tendon issues…

-> Pulldowns or pullups -> bouncing/jerking out of the “bottom” (full stretch) and/or lats going slack -> Tricep long head tear

-> Falling forward bigtime during a heavy squat -> Hamstrings suddenly have to yank you back in line -> Hamstring tear

-> Pressing with rounded shoulders/generally without retracted scapulae/proper setup -> grinding of tendons around/in the shoulder region -> erosion -> tear

-> Jerking/bouncing out of the bottom position of a row (overstretched bicep tendon/overextended arm…) -> Bicep tear

-> It’s apparently also possible to tear the lats on overhead presses, I don’t know anything in particular about that, though.

… And so on.

Generally, if a muscle is slack and suddenly subjected to extreme strain/has to suddenly contract while in a mechanical disadvantage/extreme stretch or whatever -> Possible muscle tear.

It’s perfectly avoidable… Avoid extreme-risk exercises or alter the way you do them (setup, technique) or go lighter w. higher reps there… Avoid muscle-imbalances… Generally keep technique and setup as good as possible… Listen to your body… Don’t try for crazy PR’s a week from a show… Eat properly… Stretch… Avoid extreme training approaches (extreme volume at a very high percentage of 1RM esp. when feeling tired) You get the picture.
Mostly common-sense stuff.

Ask someone like BushidoBadBoy about the particulars if you want…

And… You’ve been here since 2005 and have not yet researched this subject? :slight_smile:

yep just never thought of it. I didnt want to sift through a hundred “yeah brah I tore my pec” threads to find a wonderful summary like youve given above, if one even exists. thx man.