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  1. #1
    Registered User ryuujin27's Avatar
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    Exclamation Very strange pain in shoulder

    Hello All,

    I've scoured the internet looking for some kind of article that mentions this pain I'm having, but to no avail. Hopefully someone here will have experienced the same pain and can enlighten me as to what happened.

    Background: I was on my first of two rest days between workout sessions (my one two day rest period per week). My last workout had gone very well, and no pain was experienced. However, when I was getting into the shower I went to lift off my t-shirt and a sharp pain struck my shoulder. I quickly massaged it and tried to see if it continued to hurt, but it didn't hurt too bad. I figured I must have just moved the wrong way and took my shower and went to bed.

    The next day I find the pain is persisting. It ONLY affects me when I do a motion with my arm (left) exactly like the one you do when taking off a long sleeve shirt or a coat, where you put your arms back a little to shrug the clothes off. There is literally no other movement that hurts but this one. It's only when my shoulder gets moved back that I have this pain.

    To describe the pain, it occurs on the part of my shoulder furthest from my body, in the exact middle of my shoulder. When I do the movement that causes pain, the pain is long and a surprising amount. Then it is usually sore for a little while, and after that the pain subsides like my shoulder is in perfect condition.

    The weirdest thing is, I went to do a workout to test what my shoulder could do, and I was able to do a full workout (squats, over-head press, cleans, and pull-ups) with absolutely no shoulder pain whatsoever.

    What should I do? I can clearly workout fine, but the pain is annoying and I'm afraid that although it doesn't bothering me during training it might cause another problem to arise.

    Anyone deal with a similar issue before?
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  2. #2
    Registered User beachguy498's Avatar
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    Is it in the front of the shoulder? If so, look up AC joint pain. Some sites will have a diagnostic blurb in them, "do this motion and it'll hurt here" for example. Since you're only 22, it is probably a minor strain as opposed to a separation.

    BG
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  3. #3
    Registered User ryuujin27's Avatar
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    If by front of the shoulder you mean the front of my body, then no. It's on the front of my shoulder, by which I meant the side of my body (specifically left side, since it is my left shoulder). Sorry for the mix up. I googled AC joint pain but couldn't find any of the "do this and see if it hurts" guides. I'd love one though.

    Since I clarified the pain location, is it possible it is still the AC joint?
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    Originally Posted by ryuujin27 View Post
    Hello All,

    I've scoured the internet looking for some kind of article that mentions this pain I'm having, but to no avail. Hopefully someone here will have experienced the same pain and can enlighten me as to what happened.

    Background: I was on my first of two rest days between workout sessions (my one two day rest period per week). My last workout had gone very well, and no pain was experienced. However, when I was getting into the shower I went to lift off my t-shirt and a sharp pain struck my shoulder. I quickly massaged it and tried to see if it continued to hurt, but it didn't hurt too bad. I figured I must have just moved the wrong way and took my shower and went to bed.

    The next day I find the pain is persisting. It ONLY affects me when I do a motion with my arm (left) exactly like the one you do when taking off a long sleeve shirt or a coat, where you put your arms back a little to shrug the clothes off. There is literally no other movement that hurts but this one. It's only when my shoulder gets moved back that I have this pain.

    To describe the pain, it occurs on the part of my shoulder furthest from my body, in the exact middle of my shoulder. When I do the movement that causes pain, the pain is long and a surprising amount. Then it is usually sore for a little while, and after that the pain subsides like my shoulder is in perfect condition.

    The weirdest thing is, I went to do a workout to test what my shoulder could do, and I was able to do a full workout (squats, over-head press, cleans, and pull-ups) with absolutely no shoulder pain whatsoever.

    What should I do? I can clearly workout fine, but the pain is annoying and I'm afraid that although it doesn't bothering me during training it might cause another problem to arise.

    Anyone deal with a similar issue before?
    Yeah im having a problem really similar to this actually. Almost exact tbh, I got it from doing military press and dropped some weight in a weird way. Interested in any advice people can offer,

    free bump
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  5. #5
    Registered User ryuujin27's Avatar
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    Going to give this another little bump and ask the main question, really:

    Since there is absolutely 0 pain during lifting (the only pain I could find came when I tried dips), can I still work out? I've got a session today that is Squats, Bench, and Deadlifts and I'd love to be able to do it.

    I just got back to the gym after an extended leave from a back strain (it's 100% fine now, thank god), and to have to take more time off from a shoulder strain that didn't even happen in the gym (while I was taking my shirt off, really?) is really putting a huge damper in my moral. I'm so close to my goals and it's almost like a higher power is crapping right in my face.
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  6. #6
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    Originally Posted by ryuujin27 View Post
    Going to give this another little bump and ask the main question, really:

    Since there is absolutely 0 pain during lifting (the only pain I could find came when I tried dips), can I still work out? I've got a session today that is Squats, Bench, and Deadlifts and I'd love to be able to do it.

    I just got back to the gym after an extended leave from a back strain (it's 100% fine now, thank god), and to have to take more time off from a shoulder strain that didn't even happen in the gym (while I was taking my shirt off, really?) is really putting a huge damper in my moral. I'm so close to my goals and it's almost like a higher power is crapping right in my face.
    Ice and rest it for a week,then see how it feels.No need to keep working out if you have pain in your shoulder,could just make it worse.
    Your not going to grow from light weight,and your not going to grow from light food.........
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  7. #7
    H = T + V mslman71's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ryuujin27 View Post
    Going to give this another little bump and ask the main question, really:

    Since there is absolutely 0 pain during lifting (the only pain I could find came when I tried dips), can I still work out? I've got a session today that is Squats, Bench, and Deadlifts and I'd love to be able to do it.

    I just got back to the gym after an extended leave from a back strain (it's 100% fine now, thank god), and to have to take more time off from a shoulder strain that didn't even happen in the gym (while I was taking my shirt off, really?) is really putting a huge damper in my moral. I'm so close to my goals and it's almost like a higher power is crapping right in my face.
    This is a pretty easy read with videos on exercise:
    http://askthetrainer.com/rotator-cuff-exercises.html

    This covers the details very well, but you might be in for a crash course in medical terminology (anterior, posterior, medial, adduction, etc.) but it's worth your while:

    http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/93095-overview

    Could be mild impingement syndrome, could be strained supraspinatus tendon/muscle all by itself, hard to say. Diagnosing and treating this stuff is why Dr's get paid the big bucks I highly recommend seeing one. I imagine at this stage they might take an X-ray but would otherwise recommend ice, anti-inflammatories, and time off. I suggest learning to stretch, warm up, and exercise the RC as part of your routine. It's worth every millisecond spent doing it.

    If you need any help clarifying some of the terminology feel free to PM me.
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  8. #8
    Registered User ryuujin27's Avatar
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    Thanks for the incredible quick responses, even if it wasn't exactly what I wanted to hear.

    I'm still slightly unclear as to why it would be no good to continue to work out if the exercises I'm doing cause no pain whatsoever.

    Either way, I guess I'll take your advise. I have a doctor's appointment coming up anyway, so I guess I can get it checked out then. I'll continue to ice it and do some of the exercises.

    Thanks for all the links, as well.

    P.S. - Also wanted to clarify the pain. It seems like I was wrong, and coinsiding with what I've read about AC joint injuries, it seems like I have a very minor one. The pain was all over the shoulder to the point where I could not specify the correct location, but now it's centralized, as the websites said it would. It IS located on the front of my shoulder (meaning facing forward), leading me to believe it is undoubtedly an AC joint injury.

    Going by their grades, I think it is grade one. The only thing that seems different is I have no pain trying to lift my arm above my shoulder at all. The only pain at all comes when I do that motion like I am taking off a coat, where I move my arm behind me while it's pointed down.

    Very strange.
    Last edited by ryuujin27; 01-27-2011 at 09:12 AM. Reason: Addition
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  9. #9
    Registered User beachguy498's Avatar
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    I figured it was an AC joint injury. You have some of the classic symptoms. I have one as well, maybe a grade 2 or 3 that I'm in PT for, among other things. Often an impingement goes with it too.. nothing simple about shoulders. To open up some space for it, look at scapular retraction exercises, outward and inward rotations, etc. Some of the other links posted should be a good place to start.

    BG
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  10. #10
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    Originally Posted by ryuujin27 View Post
    Thanks for the incredible quick responses, even if it wasn't exactly what I wanted to hear.
    I understand, but there are rarely any quick fixes.

    Originally Posted by ryuujin27 View Post
    ... The pain was all over the shoulder to the point where I could not specify the correct location, but now it's centralized, as the websites said it would. It IS located on the front of my shoulder (meaning facing forward), leading me to believe it is undoubtedly an AC joint injury.
    Yeah, there's a lot of "stuff" in that area, including your biceps tendon. Hard to pick out the exact culprit. Being that it is so mild the conservative treatment (ice & advil & rest on overhead and pressing movements) should get you out of trouble. You might just be one of the lucky few who has a hooked acromion and are predisposed to this problem.
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  11. #11
    Registered User ryuujin27's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by beachguy498 View Post
    I figured it was an AC joint injury. You have some of the classic symptoms. I have one as well, maybe a grade 2 or 3 that I'm in PT for, among other things. Often an impingement goes with it too.. nothing simple about shoulders. To open up some space for it, look at scapular retraction exercises, outward and inward rotations, etc. Some of the other links posted should be a good place to start.

    BG
    Thanks again, Beachguy.

    P.S. - I tried those excerises mentioned, and none of them cause any pain, either. Is that strange?

    Originally Posted by mslman71 View Post


    Yeah, there's a lot of "stuff" in that area, including your biceps tendon. Hard to pick out the exact culprit. Being that it is so mild the conservative treatment (ice & advil & rest on overhead and pressing movements) should get you out of trouble. You might just be one of the lucky few who has a hooked acromion and are predisposed to this problem.
    Does that really make me lucky if I'm predisposed to this? Perhaps I misundestood, haha.

    Also, I noticed you said overhead and pressing movements, but I was able to do over-head presses the other day (and set a new PR, I might add) without any pain at all. Is that consistent with the symptoms?

    So far the only excerise I haven't tried that might cause some pain is the bench press.
    Last edited by ryuujin27; 01-27-2011 at 09:32 AM. Reason: Addition
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  12. #12
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    Originally Posted by ryuujin27 View Post

    Does that really make me lucky if I'm predisposed to this? Perhaps I misundestood, haha.
    No, I was being sarcastic. I'm one of those lucky ones too

    Originally Posted by ryuujin27 View Post
    Also, I noticed you said overhead and pressing movements, but I was able to do over-head presses the other day (and set a new PR, I might add) without any pain at all. Is that consistent with the symptoms?

    So far the only excerise I haven't tried that might cause some pain is the bench press.
    I honestly am not sure. I usually think of pain with overhead pressing movements as being the most likely associated with impingement, but I _think_ subscapularis involvement can go along with it. I just can't say if this is always true, especially with very mild cases. Gonna have to go with a Dr on this. In my experience, I get worsening impingement symptoms on all pressing movements without adequate stretch and recovery time. Just give it some time and see what happens.
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    Originally Posted by mslman71 View Post
    I understand, but there are rarely any quick fixes.



    Yeah, there's a lot of "stuff" in that area, including your biceps tendon. Hard to pick out the exact culprit. Being that it is so mild the conservative treatment (ice & advil & rest on overhead and pressing movements) should get you out of trouble. You might just be one of the lucky few who has a hooked acromion and are predisposed to this problem.
    mslman:

    The shoulder is such a "mysterious joint." The more I learn, the more confused. My other recommendation is perhaps he may have some type of unidentified muscle inbalance (ie: weak scapular mobility/dysfunction issues, pec minor, weak anterior sarratus, etc..). These small little assist, stabilizer muscles are important and most cases commonly neglected to enjoy good shoulder health.
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    Originally Posted by SnakeE117 View Post
    mslman:
    My other recommendation is perhaps he may have some type of unidentified muscle inbalance (ie: weak scapular mobility/dysfunction issues, pec minor, weak anterior sarratus, etc..). These small little assist, stabilizer muscles are important and most cases commonly neglected to enjoy good shoulder health.
    Right, and these second order issues simply cannot be diagnosed over the internet. Someone has to run through the tests, someone qualified and experienced. I have a bit of scapular dyskinesia secondary to arthritis and it gives me about as much aggravation as the arthritis itself. No way would I have know this was an issue if a professional had not sat down with me in person and gone over the mechanics.
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    Registered User ryuujin27's Avatar
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    Ah ha, sarcasm. I figured, but it's often hard to catch in text, haha.

    And thanks for the replies again, all. I'm trying to move up my current appointment with a Doctor to get it x-rayed and figure out exactly what's going on. I'll be sure to come back and give an update when I know, as it seems like this pain might have stumped everyone here. It seems to fit a few different things but nothing perfectly. Just my luck.
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    Originally Posted by mslman71 View Post
    Right, and these second order issues simply cannot be diagnosed over the internet. Someone has to run through the tests, someone qualified and experienced. I have a bit of scapular dyskinesia secondary to arthritis and it gives me about as much aggravation as the arthritis itself. No way would I have know this was an issue if a professional had not sat down with me in person and gone over the mechanics.
    Hey. The PT identified also areas of weakness, sub-scapular and traps. I can't recall those muscle groups, however their in my notes. Part of my therapy will be to strengthen this all so important "little" muscles. I also posted in a note in the jacked rotator cuff thread in ref: to shoulder impingement.
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    Registered User ryuujin27's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by SnakeE117 View Post
    Hey. The PT identified also areas of weakness, sub-scapular and traps. I can't recall those muscle groups, however their in my notes. Part of my therapy will be to strengthen this all so important "little" muscles. I also posted in a note in the jacked rotator cuff thread in ref: to shoulder impingement.
    Do you mind posting some of those exercises? I'd love to strengthen the little muscles as well that the big lifts may not hit.
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    Originally Posted by ryuujin27 View Post
    Do you mind posting some of those exercises? I'd love to strengthen the little muscles as well that the big lifts may not hit.
    Good site (I think):
    http://askthetrainer.com/rotator-cuff-exercises.html

    http://www.shoulder-pain-management....exercises.html

    I focus more on external rotation than anything as it is the component that is most lacking in my normal building routine. You can use cables in leu of the rubber band. Move slowly, no jerking.
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    Originally Posted by mslman71 View Post
    Good site (I think):
    (URL - I don't have 30 posts so I can't quote it)

    (URL - same as above)

    I focus more on external rotation than anything as it is the component that is most lacking in my normal building routine. You can use cables in leu of the rubber band. Move slowly, no jerking.
    Great, thanks!
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    Originally Posted by ryuujin27 View Post
    Do you mind posting some of those exercises? I'd love to strengthen the little muscles as well that the big lifts may not hit.
    Quite a bit these excercises are all over YouTube. Areas of weakness must be identified, best done through a PT. An excercise plan is then developed to address those areas that are weak and/or suspect. The ultimate goal is to avoid "muscle imbalances." Most shoulder injuries, according to Dr. Tucker, are muscle imbalances of some sort. Other contributing factors are over training, combining that with improper technique and going too heavy, provide the perfect conditions for one to experience some type of shoulder injury.

    Lift smart. Learn about the mechanics. Educate yourself about the shoulder joint complex, how excercise effects the joint. Injury prevention is critical. This is best done through education. I hope this help yourself and others.
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