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  1. #1
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    Left side imbalance and only have barbell

    How do I work on improving the imbalance? After reaching certain weight (poverty low) in my lifts, I tend to injure something. Mostly left shoulder.

    And this time my freaking right toes also. Took a week and a half off and still right toe is not better. But that’s another story (unless someone can chime in what I may be doing? Not balancing during squats??)

    Anyhow, I only have a barbell and no dumbbells...should I just keep resetting when I reach my weight where I injure myself?

    After videoing myself it seems as if I start loosing form on my left side as I reach farther into the set.

    Thanks for your help!
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    Hard to say what causes an injury without being able to physically examine you (and without holding sports physio qualifications...). I doubt it's anything to do with only using a barbell.

    Asymmetries are normal and no necessarily problematic.

    Form videos would help.
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    Dumbells et all won't fix an imbalance irrespective of what brahs will tell you. Just doesn't happen.. Your positioning will still be different side to side regardless if you keep letting one side fail.

    Performing the lifts with decent form and stopping before the "weaker" side fails and building up is what will give you the best chance to equalise.

    Bare in mind, some "imbalances" are structural and Litterally nobody is completely symmetrical anyway. It's likely much less an issue that you think, and very unlikely to be the *cause* of injuries. That's 95% a bad workload management issue
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    Imbalance will likely improve naturally if you use a proper program and progress out of the poverty lift range to build some muscle.

    The bigger problem is that you keep injuring yourself and are planning your resets for when you reach your "injury weight" on lifts. I imagine this is due to poor form and/or poor programming. If you post the videos you took and your program (including which exercises are risky for you), people may be able to give some feedback.

    In general if you're getting injured because your left side is failing and losing form early, then stop your set when you reach that point and keep progressing over time from there.
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    Helpful feedback and responses.

    What I meant by “reset at my injury weight” is that I know where I injure myself and I’ve done it twice already.

    I will try and put up some videos but what I think I’m doing is that wayyyy before my right side runs out of juice, my left side runs out. But because right side is helping lighten the load, left side keeps going and I start cheating or let the bar lean one way or my mechanics change on the weak side resulting in horrible form On the left side. End up spraining my trap and/or shoulder/rotator cuff.

    Left bicep is 12 inches unflexed and right bicep is 12 3/4 inches. MMC on the right side pecs and lats is great, left side not so much.

    Just want to make sure I’m thinking in the right direction - reduce the weight and keep my left side in check. As soon as the form starts breaking on the left side, stop the set and reset the weight like the program calls for? This lower weight will be crazy light for my right side (yesterday was my first day back after 10 day break to let tendinitis get better and I worked out with 80% of my previous working weights. Was too light for right side)

    I’m on Greyskull LP /fit version - I was having recovery issues trying to progress on Fierce 5 (7 months on it) and 10 weeks cycles on AllPro. So switched to Greyskull.
    Last edited by TryingBB; 11-02-2020 at 11:55 AM.
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    Originally Posted by TryingBB View Post
    Anyhow, I only have a barbell and no dumbbells...should I just keep resetting when I reach my weight where I injure myself?

    After videoing myself it seems as if I start loosing form on my left side as I reach farther into the set.
    Relative strength imbalances tend to decrease as you get stronger if you don't allow form to break. Sounds like your form must be absolutely disintegrating. Dumbbells won't help here.

    Originally Posted by TryingBB View Post
    Helpful feedback and responses.

    What I meant by “reset at my injury weight” is that I know where I injure myself and I’ve done it twice already.

    I will try and put up some videos but what I think I’m doing is that wayyyy before my right side runs out of juice, my left side runs out. But because right side is helping lighten the load, left side keeps going and I start cheating or let the bar lean one way or my mechanics change on the weak side resulting in horrible form On the left side. End up spraining my trap and/or shoulder/rotator cuff.

    Left bicep is 12 inches unflexed and right bicep is 12 3/4 inches. MMC on the right side pecs and lats is great, left side not so much.

    Just want to make sure I’m thinking in the right direction - reduce the weight and keep my left side in check. As soon as the form starts breaking on the left side, stop the set and reset the weight? This lower weight will be crazy light for my right side (yesterday was my first day back after 10 day break to let tendinitis get better and I worked out with 80% of my previous working weights. Was too light for right side)

    I’m on Greyskull LP /fit version - I was having recovery issues trying to progress on Fierce 5 (7 months on it) and 10 weeks cycles on AllPro. So switched to Greyskull.
    You're just spinning your wheels like you have been for a while.

    IFBB pros can have 1-2 in. differences in arm measurements. No one is perfectly symmetrical.

    MMC is irrelevant for a program like Greyskull. Why are you throwing that in the mix to cross yourself up yet again? Allowing form breakdown is MMC gone wrong.
    Last edited by TolerantLactose; 11-02-2020 at 11:54 AM.
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    Originally Posted by SuffolkPunch View Post
    Hard to say what causes an injury without being able to physically examine you (and without holding sports physio qualifications...). I doubt it's anything to do with only using a barbell.

    Asymmetries are normal and no necessarily problematic.

    Form videos would help.
    Yes sir. I’ll get some videos up. In the meanwhile, I did go see a sports medicine doctor last time when I injured myself and he kinda played it off saying everyone is asymmetrical and he’d have to dissect me to see where I’m different. And recommended I go do physical therapy sessions for my left side. At that time I only was feeling that the way I use my left side while at my desk or driving or OHP (bench is fine), is different and left side feels considerably weaker than right side.

    I basically wasted time and money (100% out of pocket) going to him and he apparently has been the doc for one big NBA And baseball team.

    Anyhow I may try and go see a different doc if I start feeling I’m getting injured again.
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    Originally Posted by MyEgoProblem View Post
    Dumbells et all won't fix an imbalance irrespective of what brahs will tell you. Just doesn't happen.. Your positioning will still be different side to side regardless if you keep letting one side fail.

    Performing the lifts with decent form and stopping before the "weaker" side fails and building up is what will give you the best chance to equalise.

    Bare in mind, some "imbalances" are structural and Litterally nobody is completely symmetrical anyway. It's likely much less an issue that you think, and very unlikely to be the *cause* of injuries. That's 95% a bad workload management issue
    Can you please elaborate on “That's 95% a bad workload management issue“

    I’ll try and explain a bit as to what’s going on...

    It’s mentally challenging to stop a set where I don’t feel fatigued enough to stop a set. Trying to push so that I can progress.

    So...let’s say I’m benching. I just got through rep 4 and feel like I can keep going easy. I get through fifth rep and feel like I stuck my left elbow out a tad bit to get the weight up and maybe also, right side got the weight up faster than left side (bar tilted to the left).

    I am still not fatigued or feeling the burn on either side and feel like I can bang out two or three more reps before I’m at RPE 9.5 or 10.

    So I keep going and left elbow sticks out a tad bit more. Right side is happy no problem. Bar maybe leaned lower to the left. Left shoulder starting to loose tightness as I’m benching on that 6th and 7th rep.

    So question is, do I stop when I felt my elbow stuck out too far on Rep 5?
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    Originally Posted by TryingBB View Post
    So I keep going and left elbow sticks out a tad bit more. Right side is happy no problem. Bar maybe leaned lower to the left. Left shoulder starting to loose tightness as I’m benching on that 6th and 7th rep.

    So question is, do I stop when I felt my elbow stuck out too far on Rep 5?
    No, keep going until your form breaks down so much that you injure yourself - like you've been doing repeatedly thus far.
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    Originally Posted by air2fakie View Post
    No, keep going until your form breaks down so much that you injure yourself - like you've been doing repeatedly thus far.
    Lmao

    I kicked myself and lol’d hard after reading that.

    Am not trying to come off as stupid (maybe am, huh? ) just trying to see if there is any other way of fixing this issue.

    I guess I’ll reset at 75% or 80% of my working weight and try and bring my weaker side up.

    Such a darned drag. Need to keep pushing hard to grow, but when I push hard, I injure myself. Phuck!!!

    It will take a lot of self control stopping a set with 4 or so reps in the tank.
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    You need to change your sig.
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    Originally Posted by TryingBB View Post
    Lmao

    I kicked myself and lol’d hard after reading that.

    Am not trying to come off as stupid (maybe am, huh? ) just trying to see if there is any other way of fixing this issue.

    I guess I’ll reset at 75% or 80% of my working weight and try and bring my weaker side up.

    Such a darned drag. Need to keep pushing hard to grow, but when I push hard, I injure myself. Phuck!!!

    It will take a lot of self control stopping a set with 4 or so reps in the tank.
    Well you started off concerned about your left-side "imbalance" and injuries, and after getting suggestions, you're now concerned about the mental fortitude required to stop early and your right side not working hard enough.

    You don't have 4 reps in the tank if your entire form is breaking down and the bar is leaning all the way down on one side.
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    Originally Posted by air2fakie View Post
    Well you started off concerned about your left-side "imbalance" and injuries, and after getting suggestions, you're now concerned about the mental fortitude required to stop early and your right side not working hard enough.

    You don't have 4 reps in the tank if your entire form is breaking down and the bar is leaning all the way down on one side.
    Gotcha.

    Not worried. Just saying.

    Stopping when reps are feeling Easy is gonna suck but I’ll do it.

    I just recently figured this out as I’m going. Learning as i keep going and making mistakes.

    Thanks y’all.

    This was one embarrassing thread
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    Originally Posted by TolerantLactose View Post
    You need to change your sig.
    Yes sir. But pls realize I’m learning as I go. I didn’t know everything or claimed to know everything the day I did my first bench press. hence I’m here looking like a fool.

    Really the point of this thread was to validate what I thought was the problem. I didn’t wanna go too easy and lift light weights and later someone tell me I dun goofd
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    Originally Posted by TryingBB View Post
    Yes sir. But pls realize I’m learning as I go.
    You've shown no grown in knowledge. All I expect from you these days are empty words.
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    Fun fact.
    Stopping your sets with 0-3 reps in the tank will give you the same size gains... (statistically insignificant differences)

    But leaving more in the tank will let you do more work, more sets, with less fatigue and no ****ty reps.

    Even goes for strength adaptations.. Stopping a set when the bar slows is actually better for force production..


    Originally Posted by TryingBB View Post
    Can you please elaborate on “That's 95% a bad workload management issue“
    95% of all lifting injuries come from not managing your work load. The rest are out of your control.

    "I'm just going balls deep in the gym man"
    Aka. Going too hard for too long..

    A good example is.
    Pushing your sets until your form goes to **** every set and every session.

    This injury reset weight limit is the biggest pile of Nocebo bs. Smh.

    That's just you pushing to fast to weight your not ready to USE, aren't big enough or strong enough to use . Just sliww down, enjoy the process and let this sink in...

    *adding weight and reps doesnt force growth.
    Being able to add weight and reps is EVIDENCE you made progress... by being smart and doing quality work*.
    Last edited by MyEgoProblem; 11-05-2020 at 08:05 AM.
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    Originally Posted by MyEgoProblem View Post
    Fun fact.
    Stopping your sets with 0-3 reps in the tank will give you the same size gains... (statistically insignificant differences)

    But leaving more in the tank will let you do more work, more sets, with less fatigue and no ****ty reps.

    Even goes for strength adaptations.. Stopping a set when the bar slows is actually better for force production..




    95% of all lifting injuries come from not managing your work load. The rest are out of your control.

    "I'm just going balls deep in the gym man"
    Aka. Going too hard for too long..

    A good example is.
    Pushing your sets until your form goes to **** every set and every session.

    This injury reset weight limit is the biggest pile of Nocebo bs. Smh.

    That's just you pushing to fast to weight your not ready to USE, aren't big enough or strong enough to use . Just sliww down, enjoy the process and let this sink in...

    *adding weight and reps doesnt force growth.
    Being able to add weight and reps is EVIDENCE you made progress... by being smart and doing quality work*.
    Thank you bud. I’ll heed to this advice and continue onto the path of healthy living, healthy eating and staying active.

    One question - how does one progress in weight lifted on a program like Greyskull LP?

    When should one do a reset? Let’s say I can deadlift 205 x 5 for 3 sets at RPE 9.5. How and when do you suggest I lower the weight? Is it better I do 195 x 5 for 3 sets and be at RPE 8 on my third set 5th rep and next workout drop the weight 10% like the program calls for?

    I watched my own videos more closely and when benching, The center of the bar is not touching The center of my chest at the bottom - I’m letting the bar slide more to the stronger right side (couple inches). As the bar goes up, it goes back to center. Maybe a mobility or coordination issue. I’m working on this now with lowered weights.

    Same issue is with bicep curls and drag curls. Bar higher on strong side and center of bar not moving along middle of my body. I’m baffled I didn’t see it this clearly till after I got criticized on this thread.

    Gonna put a red rubber band in the center of the bar and try and fix this issue.
    Last edited by TryingBB; 11-05-2020 at 01:16 PM.
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