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    Maybe mark rippetoe does know his stuff...

    For the longest time I've got excruciating forearm pain from doing bicep curls and its really held me back. Any time I get over 100 lbs or so it really hurts, enough for me to back off from the exercise. And if I try to push through the pain, it just gets worse. It's plagued me for a long time.

    I've tried:
    Straps
    Doing 3/4 of the ROM since it seems to hurt the most at the top
    Starting the lift from the top
    Holding the bar in different places within the hand (fingers vs palm)
    Googling other people having this pain, it seems common and yet the only real advice that came up was to grip the bar super hard

    And none of these helped.

    Anyway, I came across this mark rippetoe video showing how to do the barbell curl:


    Kind of grotesque form; wide grip and tuck your elbows in once you get up halfway or so. I've never seen or heard anyone with this form before. But goddammit, no more forearm pain
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    Never accept defeat! backinthegymbro's Avatar
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    His elbows move and go forward so much, that it activates a lot of the shoulders when the goal of the curl is to isolate the biceps.

    Last edited by backinthegymbro; 10-31-2019 at 05:54 PM.
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    Originally Posted by backinthegymbro View Post
    His elbows move and go forward so much, that it activates a lot of the shoulders when the goal of the curl is to isolate the biceps.
    Somewhere in the vid he says that he isn't doing a strict curl. I don't do mine completely strict either, but I can tell you that my biceps are 100% the limiting factor even if my shoulders get a little bit of action too
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    I always wonder why these guys are the only ones on planet Earth who train the way they preach.
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    Total ass hole Brozef's Avatar
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    When it comes to form and execution Rippletoe knows his chit. His diet advice is iffy though.
    But I laugh when people say his program sucks for mass building.
    It a beginner's program for strength building. For fuks sake that why it's called starting strength.
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    Originally Posted by smokinal View Post
    I always wonder why these guys are the only ones on planet Earth who train the way they preach.
    Hmm not sure what you mean. Who doesn't train the way they preach?
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    Top tier exercise form coach
    Just terrible diet and programming for any sort of aesthetics
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    Originally Posted by backinthegymbro View Post
    His elbows move and go forward so much, that it activates a lot of the shoulders when the goal of the curl is to isolate the biceps.
    A few seconds in he talks about the biceps being a shoulder flexor. The barbell curl is not supposed to be an isolation movement. With that said the technique he just performed has minimal delt activation and complete bicep activation.



    Its not talked about often because there are a few other movements that allow for similar contraction. A preacher curl with a low seat/high elbow position. A Cable crucifix curl. A cable curl to the face with the pully higher then the floor, etc. I've seen quite a few videos of IFBB pro's utilizing that same technique on a barbell or cambered bar curl.


    Next time you train arms try that movement and focus on squeezing the sh!t out of your biceps at the top of the movement like that ^. Then focus on a slow negative.
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    Originally Posted by Brozef View Post
    When it comes to form and execution Rippletoe knows his chit. His diet advice is iffy though.
    But I laugh when people say his program sucks for mass building.
    It a beginner's program for strength building. For fuks sake that why it's called starting strength.
    Yeah, I think he's serious when he suggests a gallon of milk a day. Especially if its like a 130lb dude, not sure how his digestive system would handle that. Brb diarrhea all day. Fwiw I checked out his website and some of his other videos. He seems to have an actual nutritionist on payroll thats giving out sane advice

    And agreed about the program. When I got back into lifting I did a very similar program and also ate enough to put on some weight. Let me tell you I put on some serious muscle
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    Originally Posted by SaviorSelfJT View Post
    Hmm not sure what you mean. Who doesn't train the way they preach?
    In my 36 yrs of training, I've literally never, ever seen anyone curl that way.
    So, if it's the correct way, wouldn't more dudes be curling like that?
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    Total ass hole Brozef's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Jessejame5 View Post
    Top tier exercise form coach
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    He never claimed his program was for aesthetics. Idiots on the internet got confused.
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    Originally Posted by smokinal View Post
    In my 36 yrs of training, I've literally never, ever seen anyone curl that way.
    So, if it's the correct way, wouldn't more dudes be curling like that?
    Well, I'm curling that way now. Any other way and I get excruciating forearm pain. And agreed, I've never seen anyone curl that way either
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    Originally Posted by smokinal View Post
    In my 36 yrs of training, I've literally never, ever seen anyone curl that way.
    So, if it's the correct way, wouldn't more dudes be curling like that?
    Jeff Cavalier and Scott Herman have covered that technique in the past for biceps. I think Jeff Nippard also covered a variant of that with a cable.



    Its not a common way to curl because a lot of people end up cheating and they take tension off the biceps. I've also seen Jay Culter and I want to say Mike Rashid curling similar to that.
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    Never accept defeat! backinthegymbro's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by guest89 View Post
    A few seconds in he talks about the biceps being a shoulder flexor. The barbell curl is not supposed to be an isolation movement. With that said the technique he just performed has minimal delt activation and complete bicep activation.

    Next time you train arms try that movement and focus on squeezing the sh!t out of your biceps at the top of the movement like that ^. Then focus on a slow negative.
    If i'm doing curls, i want my biceps to do most of the work, not my delts. That said, squeezing at the top of each rep is always a must. Peak contraption principle. But that counts for almost every exercise. Whether it's dumbbell flyes where you squeeze the chest, or a tricep push down where you flex the tricep once your arm is stretched.
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    Originally Posted by SaviorSelfJT View Post
    Well, I'm curling that way now. Any other way and I get excruciating forearm pain. And agreed, I've never seen anyone curl that way either
    Its all good man. I'm glad for you that you found a way to continue curling pain free. I know the feel. Hey, if it works for you...
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    Originally Posted by backinthegymbro View Post
    If i'm doing curls, i want my biceps to do most of the work, not my delts. That said, squeezing at the top of each rep is always a must. Peak contraption principle. But that counts for almost every exercise. Whether it's dumbbell flyes where you squeeze the chest, or a tricep push down where you flex the tricep once your arm is stretched.
    In terms of biceps, what's the difference between:

    Curling 100 lbs, 0% shoulder = 100 lbs of load on biceps
    Curling 110 lbs, 10.whatever% shoulder = 100 lbs of load on biceps

    ?
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    And if you want to try a movement that keeps tension on the bis, try drag curls
    Thank me after your next arm session
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    Originally Posted by smokinal View Post
    Its all good man. I'm glad for you that you found a way to continue curling pain free. I know the feel. Hey, if it works for you...
    Yeah, today I did 5 sets of 10 reps (50 total) (with a weenie amount of weight, almost too embarrassed to post; 85 lbs) with what I thought was very strict form till the end when I cheated a little.

    Anyway, I actually had to wait a bit before doing front squats after because my biceps were so pumped up that I couldn't bend my arm enough to get in the front squat position; my bicep was smashing into my forearm enough that my elbow wouldn't bend enough lol
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    Originally Posted by SaviorSelfJT View Post
    In terms of biceps, what's the difference between:

    Curling 100 lbs, 0% shoulder = 100 lbs of load on biceps
    Curling 110 lbs, 10.whatever% shoulder = 100 lbs of load on biceps

    ?
    Same can be said about doing cheat curls from the very first rep with heavier weight. Is it recommended? No.
    But why not? You train some shoulders, some lower back and the biceps. It's up to everyone themselves how they'll do an exercise.
    In your case, this form of barbell curls removed your pain, so it's great to do them this way. It's just not the standard way of doing them where you keep the elbows fixated near your waist and move nothing but your forearms, bringing the weights up your shoulders.

    But everyone trains in their own way. What works for you works for you. Don't let me or anyone else tell you how to train. Do what gives you the best results.
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    Originally Posted by backinthegymbro View Post
    Same can be said about doing cheat curls from the very first rep with heavier weight. Is it recommended? No.
    But why not? You train some shoulders, some lower back and the biceps. It's up to everyone themselves how they'll do an exercise.
    In your case, this form of barbell curls removed your pain, so it's great to do them this way. It's just not the standard way of doing them where you keep the elbows fixated near your waist and move nothing but your forearms, bringing the weights up your shoulders.

    But everyone trains in their own way. What works for you works for you. Don't let me or anyone else tell you how to train. Do what gives you the best results.
    Yeah, hear you on that. I'm always cautious about cheating form because once you open that door, its easy to keep cheating more and more when you can't actually push the weight otherwise. And before you know it, you look like a clown doing power cleans with a reverse grip when those are supposed to be curls. If you don't get injured first, that is.

    I don't mind the idea of cheating bicep curls a little in this manner, but I'll keep an eye on my form and make sure that the amount of cheating doesn't get out of hand
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    Registered User Halfway's Avatar
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    nah I'm sweet, I'll stick to cable one arm curls and kettlebells for 30+ reps

    lol at the thumbnail with 3 crossfit plates
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    I just dropped barbell curls all together. Even supinated Dumbbel curls don't give me forearm pain like barbells do.
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    Originally Posted by Halfway View Post
    nah I'm sweet, I'll stick to cable one arm curls and kettlebells for 30+ reps

    lol at the thumbnail with 3 crossfit plates
    Was wondering if anyone else would notice that thumbnail. I thought those were legit 45lb plates, but obviously held in place somehow for just a camera shot since there's only a few people in the world that can cheat curl 315. He also doesn't seem to be using the form prescribed in the video either (elbows not tucked) lol
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    Bicep curls are great at tearing the biceps but also the tendons if not careful. I do them time to time but going heavy and trying to do 100% rom is just asking for trouble. Same with pullups/chins. I'm talking about the negative, fully extending your elbows and that extra stretch you feel on the back side of your elbows, that is the tendons overstretching I think. (Broscience) of course do full rom on the positive though, people that cheat that are just phaggots especially pullups. and don't swing or look you are doing the limbo.
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    just use the ez curl bar.
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    Originally Posted by rjones416 View Post
    just use the ez curl bar.
    This ^^
    Who the hell uses a straight bar for curls? Your just asking for tendonitis
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    Originally Posted by BigB2019 View Post
    Bicep curls are great at tearing the biceps but also the tendons if not careful. trying to do 100% rom is just asking for trouble. I'm talking about the negative, fully extending your elbows and that extra stretch you feel on the back side of your elbows, that is the tendons overstretching I think.
    How is it overstretching? Whether you stretch your arm out while holding a dumbbell or without holding anything, it's the same thing.
    It's not like you're hyperextending since you can't ''stretch'' the arm more than simply straightening it out. (unlike your back)
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    Originally Posted by smokinal View Post
    I always wonder why these guys are the only ones on planet Earth who train the way they preach.
    If you're going with what the majority thinks, then forget the gym and you should sit on the couch eating pizza and watching reality television.
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    Originally Posted by smokinal View Post
    And if you want to try a movement that keeps tension on the bis, try drag curls
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  30. #30
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    Originally Posted by rjones416 View Post
    just use the ez curl bar.
    This. I used to always have that forearm pain. This thread reminded me of it. I haven't had it in years because I don't use the flat bar to curl anymore.
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