T Nation

Weird Cracks And Such?


So about a month ago, this weird thing started happening. If I was driving a car, at a computer, watching tv, or anything that somewhat had my chest muscles close together, when i would lean far back or just spread out my chest, something in the center between the pecs would crack. I don't know what it is as it's never happened before until a month ago, and happens every day now. It doesn't hurt any though.

Another weird one, before I started Poliquin's S-A program, when I would db bench press, i'd never hear spinal cracks when i leaned back from the sitting position. Now on the first set of every DB bench press, as i start to lean back, i hear my whole spine crack in different places. It doesn't hurt and never happens on the next 4 sets, but I am just curious why it is happening to begin with.

Thanks for any help.


Check your form and learn to stretch.


Yeah I get that sometimes but only when I lean forward. Ever since I started playing rugby I've been able to crack my neck but before rugby I couldn't so your spine is probably the result of lifting or some other strenuous activity involving in your spine taking a beating.


Tight thoracic spine, and you're just feeling it in your chest. No big deal. Just make sure to roll it out on a foam roller or med ball.


Sounds like your spine is dried out and is cracking, kind of like when you pull on an old rubber band that's worn out. Eventually, your spine will snap and your upper body will fly off, like said rubber band.

Seriously, it's nothing to worry about. The cracking is pockets of air in the cartilage that get compressed. I like the way it feels - loosens me up. If you hear loud pops from your back during heavy deads, however...



I like the way it feels too, but why is it just starting up now?


I have experienced the same thing before.

It only seems to happen to me when I have included weighted dips in my workout program, which I noticed are also in the S-A program you are doing.

The process which causes the cracking or popping sound is called 'joint cavitation' (google it if you want to find out more) and is usually harmless. Since you said that it causes you no pain, and if you have no other accompanying symptoms, I would not think that it is anything for you to worry about.

However, as already mentioned, some soft tissue work in the thoracic region may benefit you, if you are not already doing so.

Here are a couple of articles from my favourites list that you might find useful...

Soft tissue work for tough guys:


Feel better for 10 bucks: