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The No.1 cause of Shoulder pain in strength training and how to avoid it.

The No.1 cause of Shoulder pain in strength training and how to avoid it.

Anterior Humeral Glide (AHG)

What is it?

AHG is a condition in which the head of the humorous ‘glides’ forward concerning the socket during movement. This motion can happen during any type of pressing or pulling. It is important to understand because AHG will lead to shoulder impingement and pain or injury over time. AHG is also a key reason why some people can’t build musculature in a specific area as they glide stops all tension going through the targeted muscle and then that muscle never fatigues.

Most commonly observed at the lowest point of a Lat Pulldown or the bottom point of a bench press

Why does it occur?

AHG is due to poor thoracic mobility and the body’s inability to retract the scapula during upper body movements.

Why is it becoming more prevalent during training?

  • Clients moving towards training movement, not muscles.

Ie: CrossFit -completing ‘x’ number of chin ups vs bodybuilding – Lat pulldown to failure with correct form.

  • Increasing poor posture
  • Inadequate mobility and movement training of the scapula.

Good things to practice:

  1. Practice scapula retraction with movements like ‘banded pull-aparts’
  2. Use SMR to increase thoracic mobility and decrease the restriction of the scapula

During strength training, you should:

  1. Reduce load and slow tempo during all movements to set humorous and scapula correctly.
  2. Pause and reset shoulder girdle during any change of motion
  3. Practice training the target ‘muscle’ not ‘movement ‘ during sets
  4. Reduce ROM as you fatigue but keep working through partial reps.

Focusing on shoulder function during weight training is one of the keys to building a strong and durable body as we age. Applying yourself to the above protocols will keep you progressing with your lifting without developing chronic anterior shoulder pain.

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