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  1. #1
    Registered User fulloffat's Avatar
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    recommendations for brachialis pain

    Hello, over the course of several months I've had issues with what looks like my brachialis in bicep. What happens is that after working a second set of bicep curls it begins to have an aching pain as if it is being pulled. I have similar issues with exercises involved in "pulling", like most exercises involving the back. It isn't immediate, but gradual.

    I've had tendonitis in the past, and was able to correct the problem by dropping the amount of weight, and do multiple reps (like 3 sets of 20).

    Anyone experience this, and what did you do to get over it?


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    Registered User fulloffat's Avatar
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    bump.

    I guess I'm the only one that has had this problem?
    Or do injuries belong in a special forum? I see a lot of them here.
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    Registered User IanLMT's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by fulloffat View Post
    Hello, over the course of several months I've had issues with what looks like my brachialis in bicep. What happens is that after working a second set of bicep curls it begins to have an aching pain as if it is being pulled. I have similar issues with exercises involved in "pulling", like most exercises involving the back. It isn't immediate, but gradual.

    I've had tendonitis in the past, and was able to correct the problem by dropping the amount of weight, and do multiple reps (like 3 sets of 20).

    Anyone experience this, and what did you do to get over it?


    Is there any way you could give me a more detailed picture with a circle or black dot exactly where you feel the pain?

    I am a Licensed Massage Therapist.. so pain management is my specialty...

    It may be one head of your biceps (which has two heads), or it could be you brachialis...

    if you do reverse arm curls (overhand grip) does it hurt worse than if you were to do regular curls (underhand grip). reverse curls specifically target brachialis, also known as the biceps best friend because it helps push the biceps up and give that nice "peaking" effect.

    Here is a more detailed picture as well as details of the attachments and trigger points (points you can palpate to relieve what is known to the layman as "knots". The red dots indicate where you will feel referred pain sensations when you palpate the trigger points listed with an "x". If that is also where you experience pain during your workout, it may be brachialis. If not, let me know and I can give you more info on the biceps and other arm muscles. Feel free to pick my brain, Im an anatomy nerd

    I wrote this for one of my sites, but its another forum so I dont want to post a competing link or whatever.. ill just copy/paste it here since its my own material... and some pics from great sources I have found.


    Brachialis

    The Brachialis is a strong elbow flexor. It is located deep (underneath) to the Biceps Brachii on the anterior (front) of the arm. It has a flat, thick belly, which helps to make the Biceps bulge further from the arm, it is for this reason that this muscle is referred to as "The Biceps best friend; helps to push the Bicep up when flexed." Though this is a deep muscle, there are certain portions that can be accessed for palpation. The lateral edge of the Brachialis is right in between the Biceps and Triceps Brachii, this lateral edge is superficial and easily palpable. The distal end of the Brachialis is also palpable as it passes along either side of the Biceps tendon.




    Bony Landmarks: The edge of the Brachialis can be palpated by locating the Deltoid Tuberosity and sliding straight down along the lateral side of the arm.

    Brachialis:


    Origin:

    □ Distal half of the anterior surface of the humerus

    Insertion:

    □ Tuberosity of the ulna

    □ Coronoid process of the ulna

    Action:

    □ Flexion of the elbow (humeroulnar joint)

    Now depending on your anatomy, your attachments may vary, I have seen where the muscle attaches closer to the elbow, or farther away from it... this will effect the leverage you have when flexing and could place extra stress on the attachments of the muscle.. I can draw a pic to illustrate this if youd like. just let me know

    hope that helps, let me know if you need more details... the more info you give me the better I can pinpoint what is wrong..real hard to do it over the internet as opposed to palpating your arm myself... but its better than nothing!!!

    massage will definitely help you, also if you freeze a few paper cups full of water, then rip the bottom off (exposing just a bit of the ice on the bottom, but leaving the middle to top of the cup for you to hold on to). Apply the ice to the trigger points above and see if it helps, you could also do compressions on the whole bicep region (easier if you have a friend or your gf do it for you)...

    for now Id say work with less weight til it feels better, it may just be inflamed from not letting it heal all the way between workouts, you may even have a slight tear, and they take a few days to weeks to heal... take it easier and see if that helps too....

    let me know if I can help ya in any way! keep in touch...

    Ian
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    Originally Posted by fulloffat View Post
    Hello, over the course of several months I've had issues with what looks like my brachialis in bicep. What happens is that after working a second set of bicep curls it begins to have an aching pain as if it is being pulled. I have similar issues with exercises involved in "pulling", like most exercises involving the back. It isn't immediate, but gradual.

    I've had tendonitis in the past, and was able to correct the problem by dropping the amount of weight, and do multiple reps (like 3 sets of 20).

    Anyone experience this, and what did you do to get over it?


    I had a similar problem some years ago with my biceps brachii. I was doing wide grip pulldowns with too much weight. I pulled the left bicieps brachii. I could tell it was pulled by the pain. I pulled hamstring muscles from running sprints. The pull was not serious because there was no swelling. I stopped doing any exercise that required the biceps for two weeks for the muscle to heal.
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    Registered User fulloffat's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by IanLMT View Post
    Is there any way you could give me a more detailed picture with a circle or black dot exactly where you feel the pain?

    I am a Licensed Massage Therapist.. so pain management is my specialty...

    It may be one head of your biceps (which has two heads), or it could be you brachialis...

    if you do reverse arm curls (overhand grip) does it hurt worse than if you were to do regular curls (underhand grip). reverse curls specifically target brachialis, also known as the biceps best friend because it helps push the biceps up and give that nice "peaking" effect.
    Reverse Arm Curls - no problem. Bicep curls, after about the 4th rep it starts really bothering me. It feels like it is pulling. I'm providing a picture with a black dot and arrow where it bothers me.
    Flexing my bicep doesn't bother me.
    If I pick my laptop up with my arm straight out using my forearm and bicep, it hurts in the location.
    It does not hurt unless using the muscle.
    Based on your marks I'm starting to think it isn't the brachialis.




    edit: Turning my hand and forearm as if I was going to do hammer curls and flexing my bicep bothers me.
    Single are dumbbell rows- no problem.
    Chest Exercises - no problem.
    lat pulldowns - starts hurting.
    sitting rows-starts hurting.
    All this is in the right arm only. The exercises begin to hurt as I'm getting to the top of the rep where the arm is bent.
    The arm or muscle does not swell.
    I appreciate the input !
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    Last edited by fulloffat; 11-01-2010 at 01:48 PM.
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  6. #6
    Banging it! flat6nut's Avatar
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    I have had very similar pain, but I beleive it stems more in the tendon between my bicep and forearm. On the inside, not at the elbow.

    I am working thru the pain, but it always there when I work biceps or pulling. The pain seems to be less if I warm up with lower weight for a few sets. It is only in my left arm. Because of this I have done alot less bicep work, but I cant skimp on back work. Good thing for me is my bis are not a priority at this point.

    Michael
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  7. #7
    Registered User IanLMT's Avatar
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    Alright, based on the info youve provided, I definitely agree, I dont think its your brachialis.

    I have quoted your previous 2 posts and my comments are in bold within the quotes


    Reverse Arm Curls - no problem. (this exercise specifically targets brachialis, so if it were the antagonist, Id say youd absolutely feel it during this exercise)

    Bicep curls, after about the 4th rep it starts really bothering me. It feels like it is pulling. I'm providing a picture with a black dot and arrow where it bothers me.

    Flexing my bicep doesn't bother me. what is known as isotonic contraction, and is less stressful on muscle/tendon than weight-bearing contraction

    If I pick my laptop up with my arm straight out using my forearm and bicep, it hurts in the location. this could be a combination of brachioradialis and biceps(brachioradialis is the muscle you see when you say, put a fist on the underside of a table, and push the fist up towards your face, the muscle that "pops" up is your brachioradialis... see below for more info/illustrations)

    It does not hurt unless using the muscle.
    Based on your marks I'm starting to think it isn't the brachialis. .


    .................................................


    edit: Turning my hand and forearm as if I was going to do hammer curls and flexing my bicep bothers me. an exercise which targets both brachioradialis and biceps brachii mainly, but brachialis is secondary...not baring the brunt of the weight, more for stabilization)...

    Single arm dumbbell rows- no problem.
    Chest Exercises - no problem.
    lat pulldowns - starts hurting. this exercise mainly targets lats, obviously... but biceps and trapezius are secondary muscles, your form when doing this exercise depends on which one is baring more of the load
    sitting rows-starts hurting.
    All this is in the right arm only. The exercises begin to hurt as I'm getting to the top of the rep where the arm is bent. aka the point of most stress, or most contraction
    The arm or muscle does not swell. even though it doesnt swell, it is still possible that it could be inflamed, and I definitely would still recommend using ice which has a cryogenic/retrostatic and analgesic effect, driving blood out of the tissue and relieving pain. when the ice is removed freshly oxygenated blood returns with vital nutrients for healing, doing this a few times will bring more healthy (and healing) blood to the area and may aid in speeding your recovery)
    I appreciate the input !
    Now below I have provided some information on 3 of the muscles I have mentioned above that could be the antagonists of your injury. again, its hard to say without palpating the tissues myself, itd take me 2 seconds to figure it out by hand... but the referred pain patterns below may give you some more insight into what particular muscle it could be. To me, it sounds like a combination of the long head of biceps brachii (if the pain is more on the lateral side of the arm as opposed to medial) or the brachioradialis (which is flexed when you do the laptop straight-arm lift.) but if you still feel the pain whilst doing lat pulldowns Im leaning more towards biceps brachii than brachioradialis.

    Taking it easy on arms should go without speaking for the next few weeks, maybe give it 2 weeks, where you are doing much lighter weight, do some of the ice therapy mentioned above (the more the better) and some stretching in addition to massaging the area with your fingers, if you can pinpoint on the exact area and do thumb circles cross-fiber and thumb or finger strips with the fibers... this will help to break up adhesions and release some of the tension in the muscle so its not causing so much pain. If it does feel, for lack of a better description "red" ... inflamed, etc... dont do the thumb/finger friction until this feeling subsides, stick to ice, but use the same techniques, cross fiber/with fiber etc...

    After you have reviewed the following information, if you feel like you have better pinpointed it please let me know and I can help you with more info if need be!

    keep me updated!

    hope this all helps!!

    Muscle of the Day: Triceps Brachii

    The Triceps Brachii is quite a large muscle. It is made up of three different distinct sections or "heads", the Long head, Lateral head, and Medial head. The Triceps is the only muscle located on the posterior arm and primarily acts to extend the arm at the elbow and shoulder. It plays the role of antagonist to the Biceps Brachii. Though there are separate heads, all three of the heads converge towards the Insertion to form a large and thick tendon which lies proximal to the Elbow. The distal section of the Triceps is more easily accessed than the Proximal end because its the Distal fibers are more superficial than that of the Proximal end of the muscle.


    • Origin:

    • Long Head:

    • Originates on the Infraglenoid Tubercle of the Scapula, it is the ONLY head of the Triceps which does not
    • Originate on the Humerus.

    • Lateral Head:

    • Originates on the Posterior Surface and Proximal half of the Humerus

    • Medial Head:

    • Originates on the Posterior Surface of the Distal half of the Humerus

    • Insertion::

    • All three Heads of the Triceps Brachii Insert on the Olecranon Process of the Ulna.

    • Action:

    • All Heads:

    • All three Heads Extend the Elbow at the Humeroulnar Joint.

    • Long Head:

    • Extension of the Shoulder
    • Adduction of the Shoulder



    Muscle of the Day: Biceps Brachii

    The biceps brachii is a muscle located on the superficial anterior arm. It has two heads, a long head and a short head which both converge to form an elongated oval shaped muscle belly. The tendon from the long head passes through the intertubercular groove of the humerus, which helps to stabilize the tendon as it rises to the top of the shoulder. The distal tendon of the biceps dives into the into the antecubital space (the inner elbow) to attach at the radius, which allows the muscle to be the primary muscle of forearm supination. Most of the Biceps Brachii is easily palpable.



    • Short Head:
    • Coracoid Process of the Scapula
    • Long Head:
    • Supraglenoid Tubercle of the Scapula

      Insertion:
    • Tuberosity of the radius and aponeurosis of the biceps brachii

      Action:
    • Flexion of the elbow (the humeroulnar joint)
    • Supination of the forearm (radioulnar joint)
    • Flexion of the Shoulder (glenohumeral joint)
    Last edited by IanLMT; 11-01-2010 at 09:15 PM.
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    (wouldnt let me post more than 10 images in previous post... so this is the continuation)


    Muscle of the Day: Brachioradialis



    Brachioradialis is a superficial muscle on the lateral side of the forearm (the side of the forearm that your thumb, or "Pollux", another name for the thumb.) Its long oval belly becomes tendinous about halfway down its length on the arm and divides the flexors and extensors of the wrist and hand. It is the ONLY muscle that runs the entire length of the arm, but does not cross the wrist joint. One can find this muscle quite easily by performing resisted flexion of the elbow -- Making a clenched fist with either hand, and pushing the top of the fist (the side nearest your thumb) against the underside of a table or other surface. the muscle that "pops" up is Brachioradialis!

    (The bony landmarks for Brachioradialis are: The Styloid Process of the Radius and just superior (above) to the Lateral epicondyle at the Supracondylar ridge)




    Brachioradialis

    Origin:

    □ Lateral supracondylar ridge of the Humerus

    Insertion:

    □ Styloid ( meaning "needle-like") process of radius. (Located on the lateral side of the wrist)

    Action(s):

    □ Flexion of the elbow (aKa of flexion of the forearm at elbow) (aKa flexion of the humeroulnar joint)
    □ Assist in pronation and supination of the forearm when these movements are resisted
    □ Especially in neutral position (This muscle does flexion especially in the neutral position…thumbs forward instead of anatomical position)

    Main Function to Remember: Flexion of the forearm at the elbow
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    Registered User IanLMT's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by flat6nut View Post
    I have had very similar pain, but I beleive it stems more in the tendon between my bicep and forearm. On the inside, not at the elbow.

    I am working thru the pain, but it always there when I work biceps or pulling. The pain seems to be less if I warm up with lower weight for a few sets. It is only in my left arm. Because of this I have done alot less bicep work, but I cant skimp on back work. Good thing for me is my bis are not a priority at this point.

    Michael
    You are definitely correct, if you look at the pain referral charts I have posted above, the red areas depict where you will feel what is called "referred" pain, pain that you feel apon palpating the areas with the black "x"'s known as trigger points.... like you said, though the pain originates towards the tendon/aponeurosis or the belly of the muscle, you may feel it more towards the lateral or medial side of the arm depending on what muscle (and which head if the muscle has more than one) it could be
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    brachialis pain

    I was at the gym on thursday just past and i was doing barbell curls for bicep never felt any pain while doing the exercise but next day and both my arms i couldnt straighten my right arm is fine now but my left arm is still sore and unable to straighten i think it could be my brachialis i suffer from this all the time annoying to be honest is there anything i can do to prevent in future and what relief can be done now i have work 2moro and it involves lifting
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    stay away from any barbell curls all together. a barbell forces the arm into an unnatural movement pattern. use dumbells for all your curling movements. also... for years i would do really heavy curls that would end up being cheat curls by the end. now i keep the curls very strict and mostly on a preacher curl bench using a supinated, pronated and neutral grip. since switching my arms have blown up and i no longer have any pain in the elbows or tendonititis.
    Stupid should be painful.

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    Originally Posted by rawelite View Post
    now i keep the curls very strict and mostly on a preacher curl bench using a supinated, pronated and neutral grip. since switching my arms have blown up and i no longer have any pain in the elbows or tendonititis.
    Hey Raw--you mind posting a vid of this, your next accessory day? I'm a terminology idiot when it comes to this stuff.
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    Originally Posted by ajdahlheimer View Post
    Hey Raw--you mind posting a vid of this, your next accessory day? I'm a terminology idiot when it comes to this stuff.
    No problem.....I don't mind posting a gun show vid..I better go buy a tank top now.
    Stupid should be painful.

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    Originally Posted by rawelite View Post
    No problem.....I don't mind posting a gun show vid..I better go buy a tank top now.
    LOL. Thanks. Just interested in what both the grip and ROM look like. Thinking of getting away from barbell curls like you suggested....
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    Flat barbell curls can kiss it.
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    Originally Posted by bradandblake View Post
    Flat barbell curls can kiss it.
    I use EZ bar.
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    Registered User bradandblake's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by ajdahlheimer View Post
    I use EZ bar.
    Me too, and iso cables and dumb bells.
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    Hey, I think hat what u have mentioned above resemble my problems.
    I would like to get some tips on working out during this problem.
    Thank You.
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    Registered User Paylward55's Avatar
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    Hello.

    I have had similar pain the past several months (6). I have attached a picture of where it is located. It really starts after a couple sets of bicep curls. Lat Pulldowns are a no go after a couple reps. More than 6 pullups hurt. Hammer curls and bicep curls is where I feel it the most. Reverse curl can do the trick as well.

    Any thoughts as I would like to get this resolved so I may continue my training.upper-arm-muscles-and-tendons.jpgupper-arm-muscles-and-tendons.jpg
    Yours in Fitness,

    J.P.A.
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    Registered User sy2502's Avatar
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    I have this problem regularly, sometimes the right arm, sometimes the left. I have good reason to think it's related to computer work, because it usually starts after I do several long work days in a row. The pain can last up to a year, then all of the sudden it goes away, apparently by itself.
    Over the years I found some the following things help:

    - As soon as the pain starts, ice the area aggressively.
    - If the pain is already full blown, identify the exercises that make it worse and stop doing them. For example, lat work was painful or not depending on the grip, so I restricted it to exercises with the grip that didn't hurt.
    - For biceps, lower the weight to the point it doesn't hurt too bad, and do volume instead. Yes, you'll feel ridiculous and you'll think you'll lose all your gains, but you won't.
    - Personally I found it very useful to make sure I grip the weights really really tight, I mean white knuckle tight. I noticed my wrists were moving a lot doing biceps work, which means my forearm was doing a lot of work, that is the muscles that were hurting so bad.

    If it makes you feel better, after the pain was gone, my arm was actually STRONGER than before, even though I had been using lower weights for months. I don't know why but that's what happened.
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    Registered User grubman's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Paylward55 View Post
    Hello.

    I have had similar pain the past several months (6). I have attached a picture of where it is located. It really starts after a couple sets of bicep curls. Lat Pulldowns are a no go after a couple reps. More than 6 pullups hurt. Hammer curls and bicep curls is where I feel it the most. Reverse curl can do the trick as well.

    Any thoughts as I would like to get this resolved so I may continue my training.Attachment 8760361Attachment 8760361
    Been there...fixed it.

    Step one...stop working out until it's healed (I mean REALLY healed...like a month or two). I know you don't want to, but you can either do that and fix it or continue to have pain indefinitely.

    Step two...ice it for about a half hour 3 times a day.

    Some people benefit from massage I didn't.
    My 6 years of progress (with pics) thread: http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=173360231
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