View Full Version : Clicking/cracking sound in shoulder joint...

11-23-2002, 11:56 PM
I was doing DB Lateral Raises yesterday and heard a clicking/cracking sound in my left shoulder joint. Is there something wrong with the rotator cuff? If it is, or if not, what's wrong then?

11-24-2002, 12:16 AM
I'd like to know this too, the same exercise makes my shoulder crack like a knuckle everytime I bring my arms back down to my sides, I get it in no other exercises but this one.

11-24-2002, 12:37 AM
i get it sometimes pending on the angle of which i do it

11-24-2002, 06:13 AM
I'd like to know the answers to this one. I get a terrible cracking and clicking sound in my left shoulder when doing dumbell shoulder press. Is this causing an injury or is it injured? I'm lead to believe that clicking in joints is caused by the release of gas pockets that build up in the joints, but I'm not sure if this is true or not. Anyone know?

11-25-2002, 06:11 AM
I have no idea what causes it, but my whole body creaks and cracks sometimes. Every day at work (desk job) I might stretch my arms out and all of a sudden hear my chest crackle. In the past, I've heard my elbows crack while curling and my knees crack while doing leg extensions. This was years ago that I first noticed it (maybe it still happens but I just block it out now) but nothing really seems to be wrong with me. (ie. I don't have any chronic arthritis or anything like that.)

I dont' worry about it at all, but it would still be nice to figure out what causes it all.

11-25-2002, 08:08 AM
If it is the rotator cuff, you will most likely have pain associated with military presses. I had to drop these out of my routine (hopefully for only a while) and continue with laterals, raises, etc on a high rep, low weight basis until the shoulder is better.

I have that cracking sound in the shoulder, but found it is not that noticeable if I keep my shoulders back (posture wise).

Do a search on rotator cuffs and you will find some links on exercises that help strenghten this area up. From what I have read, this is the most common injury related to bb.

11-25-2002, 11:06 AM
bump on the post above. do military press, and if it hurts, you probably do have an issue with the rotator cuff.

spin your arms around in a windmill motion. if your hearing the clicking noise, you probably have rotator cuff dammage.

have you been playing contact sports recently? footbal, rugby? have you had some type of hard impact on that shoulder? if so, you could have an a/c joint problem. i get the clicking all the time.

its a bitch. my best advice: it will only become more of a pain in the ass as time goes on. try to structure your workouts such that you do the least amount of excercises that stress that problem spot. if your really bothered by it, i'll give you my shoulder rehab program. do it light and do it every day before your main lifting workout.

good luck


11-25-2002, 10:48 PM
the clicking sound is very common. if you dont experience any pain with it, dont worry.

11-26-2002, 06:15 AM
Originally posted by heymanwassup
the clicking sound is very common. if you dont experience any pain with it, dont worry.

If there's no pain, it's probably nothing to worry about.

I have pain in my shoulder, but no sounds... much worse :(

11-26-2002, 07:13 AM
Thanks so far. :)

I'll have a look into that.

11-26-2002, 01:54 PM
I have the same thing...been to numerous docs and they all give me differnt answeres, with no help..lol...iwouldnt care except for awhile about 2 yrs ago it got so bad i couldnt lift a pop can to shoulder level, between weakness and pain....caused from a car accident....oh well...they still hurt a bit at times and make odd noises, but weights are comin back around and delts are finally growin some

Choke ya Out
11-29-2002, 06:06 AM

11-29-2002, 09:24 AM
Sounds like you all can use come glucosamine sulfate.

A good four to six month daily intake of 1500mg worth of glucosamine sulfate (not HCL form, or any others) would be more then plenty to keep your join lubricated.

That would only address the issue of lacking joint nutrient. As you know, all of our joints are synovial joint. And in the SY joint, there are SY fluid. The fluid are full of vit C, lysine, glucosamine sulfate and a few others *that's all I know for now*.

Those are the stuff your cartilage and tendon tissues require to rebuild itself to the norm after being damage (Ex: microtrama from training quads. Or Heavy should presses.. etc.)

Now, to address the cracklying sound physically. Try getting one of those "active release technique" professional. Where can you find them? Some chiropractor do study that, A.R.T are more crossing towards sports medicine and most chiropractors might not have a passion in that field. I met someone before who does both, and the relieve I got on my infraspinatus is great!

If you can't find one or can't afford one *mulitple visits can hurt your wallet* Try "self myofacial tissue" release. I know how to do it by heart, but have never pick up a book or two to read up about it. Since I got better recovery rate when I do that to almost all of my bodyparts (hamstrings and back requires a second person).

It's not quite a massage, and at times, self administered or any form of myofascial release are semi-painful. I know this recovery technique might or might not help your SY joint's condition.

Have you gotten an MRI? Might be you HAD a small injury and it heal good, but now the scar tissue are floaing in your SY joint freely and got caught as the joint is under compression.

Second, do you make very sure that you does a great warm up prior to your presses? Interal/external rotation: make sure you initial the movement from the shoulder ORIGIN not your pecs, or else you are not getting the benefit of the In/external rotation therapy/movements.

hope that helps.

12-29-2002, 08:19 AM

If you are injured in any way I would encourage to read this comprehensive thread I am putting together about Active Release Technique. I have been helped by it, but not a lot of bros have heard about it. There is a link that will help you find a provider in your area there.

"All the doctors said I needed surgery for impingement syndrome in both shoulders. After one treatment, I rebooked all my competitions and trained to be in the best shape of my life". Milos Sarcev Mr. Universe, 1989.

12-30-2002, 01:58 AM
i used to have the same problem before too
until i start doin cardio before my workout... and also i do a 20rep warmup set first.. 20 GOOD REPS.. not throwing the weight because its light

12-30-2002, 06:02 AM
i also have that problem when i do any type of shoulder presses, i never really though tof it as a problem though because i have no associated pain.

i also found that if i don't lower the weight as much it doesn't click, thats my answer


12-30-2002, 06:21 AM
i had the same thing, but i just kept going after a month it was gone, now i got it somtimes but also only with high weights

sometimes my elbow just clicks without even moving it with weights, i would keep going it usually goes away after a while and i don't think it has any short terms efect only long

the things you can do for it is warm op,
(this only counts is there is no pain with the clicking sound)

01-29-2003, 02:10 PM
I've got the clicking on occasion as well. Like it was said before, if there's no pain...you're all good. If there is (or even if there isn't) start doing some rotator cuff exercises. I know of one website that has some, but of course I can't recall the name right now. There's one where you get two 5 or 10 lb plates, put one in each hand, start with holding them in front of you (like you're clapping your hands), raise them up slowly over your head, then out slowly to your sides then down. All in a circular motion. Do this a few times or at least until they get that warm stretched out feeling. A good glucosamine sulphate/msm supplement does do quite well too. MSM provides nutrients essential to a stable cell membrane structure in the joint tissue, which aids in movement and has lubricating action. Glucosamine adds base material that can be used to support the joints. It supports the growth of connective tissue used in the joint structure. Basically these together will lubricate and aid the connective tissues and joints all around. It takes roughly a week or so until you can actually tell that they're working.

05-18-2011, 10:05 PM
I'm bring this thread out from the dead simply because I found it through a google search on "shoulders clicking cracking".

First things first, check you diet, general health and life style, and make sure to get 8-10 glasses of water a day.

Find what exercise and or movements cause the clicking and stop doing them. Shoulder press behind the neck, lat pull down behind the neck should generally be avoided regardless.

Most likely this isnt a RC injury. If you can raise your arm up, and if you dont have pain, its most likely not an RC tear, but always get professional advise. What I believe it to be is tight muscles and muscle imbalance or postural issues. Find out if you have forward shoulders otherwise known as rounded shoulders. Then correct it.

The issue may well be shoulder instability. To fix it, use those fitness elastics or bands I think there called. Do reverse flys, and doing rotator cuff strengthening exercises may well help and be your answer.

In basic terms, you need to work the back of the shoulders (rear delts) and stretch out the chest. Do more pulling exercises than pushing. Also pay attention to your posture when you sit and at all times.

A glucosamine, MSM, condrotin and fish oil supplements may help in keeping the joints fluid. Dont forget water and a good diet.

05-18-2011, 10:15 PM
Glucosamine, MSM always help make clicks go away on me after about a week of taking it.

I don't know what causes it but in my experience when a joint keeps clicking and I ignored it starts to have a dull aching feeling plus it recovers slower. Normally if something is constantly click i'll look for an alternative exercise. I'll come back to that exercise in a week or two and the click has disappeared. Would love to know more about what causes this clicking to begin with. Which leads me to want to do some research on it now.

05-18-2011, 10:29 PM
I also get this, I try to do the reps really slowly just to get a better idea of why it's happening. An alarming sensation and sound.

05-19-2011, 12:51 AM
Good to see that I'm not alone with this problem.
My joints make a disturbingly loud cracking noise every time I lift or lower the DB while doing lateral raises.
I have no pain at all but am still a bit concerned what will happen in the long run.

I always just power through these unpleasant moments.

05-19-2011, 07:51 AM
If its clicks with no pain, usually there isnt too much to worry about. Its just a small nitrogen bubble escaping the joint.

However, sometimes with the RC, it could be the beginning stages of shoulder instability or subluxation which usually won't show any sort of pain until the subluxation actually occurs. If the RC muscles are stretched, the joint could pull away from the plate allowing a gas bubble to form between the joint and create that popping sound.

Basically if your shoulder starts to feel unstable at all during the military press when you would normally get the clicking, stop and get it checked out. But if your shoulder feels fine, and theres no pain associated with the clicking, dont worry about it. It's just like cracking your knuckles.

01-31-2013, 05:56 AM
Ive had multiple shoulder surgeries due to football injuries and poping in the shoulder joint was one of the problems and all three times have been a laberal tear.

08-20-2015, 11:38 PM
This is not your tissue but your cartilage and bone structure, usually caused by wear over time, old
injuries or just over time wear and tear on the body over a period of time. Simply take trip to a doctor and he will give you proper answers to your concerns and what if anything you are required to do.

Many weight lifters have suffered serious injuries by not taking these simply steps, ignoring it never makes it better, and will not you get a full proper workout if you have concerns and cant keep your mind on the task at hand because your worried. you may have nothing to worry about but you will never know if you don't have it properly checked. Just some friendly from an old school weight lifter and Iron Worker:)

10-25-2018, 09:01 PM
Overtraining causes me to crack, pop and ache.

PPL loads the shoulders too often if you're not an athlete imo

In on 16 year thread