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Old 11-01-2011, 03:54 PM   #1
Jeremy B Smith
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Rope climbs and shoulder pain

I experience some severe pain on the outer/backside of both shoulders when I rope climb. The strange thing is that it doesn't hurt that much when I'm pulling up, but much more so after I pull, and then release tension in my shoulders. That's when I get very sharp shooting pain, but it does not last long. I have been crossfitting for around 6 months now. Strict pullups, kips, butterflys, muscle-ups, toes to bar, none of that stuff causes the pain. Overhead movements don't really cause pain during the movement. If I do a lot of overhead squats, then the backside of my shoulder will be pretty sore for the next few days, but that's the extent of it.

I know there are a myriads of discussions on here regarding should problems, so I apologize if this has been discussed. I did a search and couldn't come up with anything similar. Any thoughts on what this may be or what I can do about it? I don't do rope climbs often, but this keeps me from doing them hardly any. I don't think it's a strength issue because I can do plenty of strict pullups, and have started incorporating more weighted pullups into my regular training. My current 3 rep max for weighted pullups is 45 pounds plus bodyweight of 145 lbs.

Thanks for any help,
Jeremy
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Old 04-17-2012, 08:58 AM   #2
Russ Oliver
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Re: Rope climbs and shoulder pain

I realize this thread is a bit old, but I'm curious if you found anything to help with this. You described to a tee the problem I'm having with rope climbs. Like you said, it's not the pulling up that hurts, but the release of tension that shoots into the outer/back side of my shoulder (just beneath the shoulder really). I also tweaked that same area a couple times using post hole diggers. Something about that similar hand position or angle seems to irritate it.

Sure wish I knew some sort of mobility work or strengthening I could be doing to overcome it. I'd love to add more rope climbing in, but I'm too scared of re-tweaking
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Old 04-17-2012, 10:52 AM   #3
Jeremy B Smith
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Re: Rope climbs and shoulder pain

Russ,

I never did find anything out really. However, I have been focusing lately on really strengthening my shoulders. I will program strict shoulder presses, renegade rows, strict pull-ups and dips usually adding weight, and handstand push-ups. I have no doubt that my shoulders have gotten stronger, but I haven't tried any rope climbs recently to see if it still bothers my shoulders. I will venture to say that with stronger shoulders, I don't expect it to be as bad.
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Old 04-18-2012, 07:50 PM   #4
Steven Low
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Re: Rope climbs and shoulder pain

Well, if you do and it's still there answer these Q's if you want a guess


1. Google a pic and mark where it hurts. For the computer illiterate (use MS paint to mark it, and imgur.com to upload). Tell me what tissue(s) it feels like it's hurting in, or if it's more superficial or deep in the joint?

2. What exercises hurt? Which shoulder articulations hurt? Make sure you check both with passive motion (you moving the leg without it moving itself) and resistive/active motion (you moving it, and you moving it against force). Also tell me when and what movements during these exercises are eliciting the pain?
http://www.exrx.net/Articulations/Shoulder.html

3. What type of pain is it? Burning? Ache? Tingling? Sharp?

4. What would you rate the pain at on a 0/10 scale? 0 being no pain, 10 being go to the emergency room.

5. Acute or chronic (chronic more than ~8+ weeks)? What date was onset? How has the pain improved since the initial injury?

6. Have you been training through pain? If so, how long?

7. What have you been doing for recovery purposes? Do these recovery methods help?

8. What seems to help? What seems to make it worse? Is it constant? Does it increase/decrease with certain activities?

9. Check the tissue quality of the surrounding muscles. Which ones are tight? Which ones are tender? Is there any swelling?

10. How does it feel after exercise (if any)? How does it feel at the beginning of the day? How about the end of the day?

11. Any previous injury history?

12. How's your posture?

13. What is your current workout routine for that bodypart? Do you play any sports?

14. Any other information I should be aware of or that comes to mind that may help?
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Old 04-19-2012, 11:55 AM   #5
Russ Oliver
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Re: Rope climbs and shoulder pain

Not to steal Jeremy's thread, but here's my stab:

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Originally Posted by Steven Low View Post
Well, if you do and it's still there answer these Q's if you want a guess


1. Google a pic and mark where it hurts. For the computer illiterate (use MS paint to mark it, and imgur.com to upload). Tell me what tissue(s) it feels like it's hurting in, or if it's more superficial or deep in the joint?

According to http://fightsciencesresearchinstitut...ckanatomy1.jpg (wfs) I think its the Teres major/minor area.

2. What exercises hurt? Which shoulder articulations hurt? Make sure you check both with passive motion (you moving the leg without it moving itself) and resistive/active motion (you moving it, and you moving it against force). Also tell me when and what movements during these exercises are eliciting the pain?
http://www.exrx.net/Articulations/Shoulder.html

I'd say Extension and Adduction looking at those exercises. When it's already irritated, I can do regular pullups fine, but reverse grip pullups and rope climbs where my hand is rotated inward seems to trigger it. Recently it flared up again after doing a ridiculous amount of famers walks. I think I flexed those muscles pretty hard walking with dumbells.

3. What type of pain is it? Burning? Ache? Tingling? Sharp?

Sharp just as I lose tension letting go of the rope. (Climbing up the rope I have to go slow and be really carefull. Climbing down hurts too bad, so I just drop usually.)

4. What would you rate the pain at on a 0/10 scale? 0 being no pain, 10 being go to the emergency room.

4-7 while in use depending on how inflamed it is.

5. Acute or chronic (chronic more than ~8+ weeks)? What date was onset? How has the pain improved since the initial injury?

It started more than 8 weeks ago (within the last year), but I've been avoiding ropes, so it hasn't been a constant issue.


6. Have you been training through pain? If so, how long?

Somewhat, but I try to avoid movements that irritate it, so it's not normally a problem.

7. What have you been doing for recovery purposes? Do these recovery methods help?

Foam roller and rolling around on a racket ball seem to help.

8. What seems to help? What seems to make it worse? Is it constant? Does it increase/decrease with certain activities?

Hanging seems to make it worse once it's inflamed.

9. Check the tissue quality of the surrounding muscles. Which ones are tight? Which ones are tender? Is there any swelling?

Teres? Some swelling when inflamed. Sometimes it seems to spread into my tricep and/or delt, but not normally

10. How does it feel after exercise (if any)? How does it feel at the beginning of the day? How about the end of the day?

If it gets tweaked during a WOD, it'll be hot and tight afterward and I try to ice it if I can. When it gets inflamed I have to be careful with what I do or it's easy to re-injure. Normally push press and overhead work don't bother it, but I have tweaked it worse doing push presses once it's already inflamed.

11. Any previous injury history?

lower back issues sometimes, but usually able to recover fairly quickly from it.

12. How's your posture?

Nothing to brag about. I'm at a computer all day at work, so I'm sure it could be better.

13. What is your current workout routine for that bodypart? Do you play any sports?

We do pullups during crossfit WODs, but normally they don't bother me unless my grip is reversed.

14. Any other information I should be aware of or that comes to mind that may help?

It seems that mines not an ongoing problem if I avoid ropes and post hole diggers.

I'm just curious if there's something I should be doing to strengthen or massage it so that one day I can do those things w/o setting it off again.
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Old 04-19-2012, 03:34 PM   #6
Steven Low
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Re: Rope climbs and shoulder pain

Well, it's likely that is a hotspot but not the actual issue if you've had it more than 8 weeks. Remember, if something does not clear up with rest and avoiding it, there's something else probably going on.

Can you check your internal vs external range of motion?
Also, your strength with external and internal range of motion?

Do some LYTPs (google, first link) non-painfully and see what you can do with them and how it feels on your shoulder.
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Old 04-25-2012, 09:58 AM   #7
Russ Oliver
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Re: Rope climbs and shoulder pain

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Low View Post
Well, it's likely that is a hotspot but not the actual issue if you've had it more than 8 weeks. Remember, if something does not clear up with rest and avoiding it, there's something else probably going on.

Can you check your internal vs external range of motion?
Also, your strength with external and internal range of motion?

Do some LYTPs (google, first link) non-painfully and see what you can do with them and how it feels on your shoulder.
Well, after seeing this guy demonstrate (wfs) LYTPs, I gave 'em a try yesterday. I really didn't think they'd tell me much without holding any weight, but I was surprised how much I really felt these. I think the "P" portion hit the area that I've tweaked the most. Not sure if that means my internal rotation stinks or what, but I'm definitely going to add these 4 to the line up. Maybe after doing these for a while I'll give the ol' rope a climb and see if it feels any different. Thanks for the help.
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Old 04-25-2012, 09:00 PM   #8
Steven Low
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Re: Rope climbs and shoulder pain

Yeah, those usually hit weak spots that a lot of people don't often work so hopefully they'll help you strengthen up those areas.

Check back in a week or two and see how it's doing.

If no improvement I would gest it checked out by a professional
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