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Exercises Movements, technique & proper execution

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Old 07-13-2009, 04:39 PM   #1
Dan Dumsick
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Thrusters and shoulder pain

I tried doing some thrusters the other day with a relatively light weight (85lbs) and noticed I was feeling shoulder pain halfway thru my first set. My question is, should the bar be resting across the shoulders before you press or is it floating above your shoulders? I feel like I am doing them with the right form but feel pain in my shoulder that lasts a day or two. Anyone help me out with these? Thanks.
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Old 07-13-2009, 05:01 PM   #2
Justin Shipley
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Re: Thrusters and shoulder pain

Across your shoulders.
The thrust is absorbed into the arms, wrists, and rotating shoulders if you're holding the bar in your hands.
It has to be on the platform of your delts for the force to be effectively transferred to the bar.
You DON'T wanna be pressing the bar at all, the effort and power comes from violent hip extension, not front squat/press.

Try and develop enough power from the thrust to get up on you toes.

As to shoulder pain, could be good old impingement. Ibuprofen and fish oil. Lay off anything overhead, or high rep kipping pullups for a coupla days
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Old 07-14-2009, 01:45 PM   #3
Kevin Ziegenhorn
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Re: Thrusters and shoulder pain

You should do what Justin says. Note that there are a LOT of videos out there showing people holding the bar in their hands and off their shoulders in the squat... don't do that. Most people end up making some compromises in the rack position because of the need to control the bar off the rack into the "push press," but IMO it should be minimized as much as possible and should absolutely not reach the point where the bar loses contact with the delts during the squat.
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Old 07-14-2009, 02:02 PM   #4
Steven Matheson
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Re: Thrusters and shoulder pain

Quote:
Originally Posted by Justin Shipley View Post
You DON'T wanna be pressing the bar at all, the effort and power comes from violent hip extension, not front squat/press.
You sure about that? The video on the mainpage seems to make a different suggestion.

Link deleted You must annotate whether your link are Work and Family Safe (WFS)

In this video, there isn't a SINGLE proper rack position with the barbell and both Gregg and Annie are using a near exclusive shoulder press to get the bar over their heads.


Link deleted You must annotate whether your link are Work and Family Safe (WFS)

Last edited by Camille Lore; 07-14-2009 at 05:47 PM..
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Old 07-14-2009, 02:19 PM   #5
Ted Apollo
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Re: Thrusters and shoulder pain

there seems to be a split in the xfit community about the thruster and this very issue. i have heard alot of people say use the rack and change hand positions, but i have heard other people say not to rack the weight.

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here is one quote: 'The bar should be on your shoulders. Point your elbows up a good bit more and don't grab at the bar. As you reach the point where the bar comes off of your shoulders and begins the press portion of the movement, let you fingers roll under the bar - still resisting the urge to grip it (that'll just waste strength.)'

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then another: 'Ted, this question of what to do with your wrists -- the confusion is coming from the practice of Olympic lifting, where the rack position is used to receive the Clean. And Brad is telling you to use the rack position to do a front squat, which is in fact how front squats are practiced.

But a thruster is a different exercise. For the Clean & Jerk, you have to transfer the rack position to a press grip, with a strong hold on the bar and the wrists coming back to a strong, nearly straight position, NOT cocked back as in the rack pos'n.
That takes some skill and time to develop, but it is only necessary because of the C&J's two completely separate, articulated movements.

The separated, two-stages does NOT apply to a thruster. You need to come out of the hole moving fast and straight into the press. You would have to be HELLA SMOOTH -- and strong and fast -- to launch the bar with your shoulders with enough loft to spin your wrists into a straightened, strong press support position.

For this reason, I believe you need to establish that strong grip and hold it through the front squat portion, so you can drive straight into the press.'

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here is a video of the second guy doing 9 reps of 195lb thrusters: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YV27ZyPuh-I (WFS)
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Old 07-14-2009, 05:14 PM   #6
Justin Shipley
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Re: Thrusters and shoulder pain

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Matheson View Post
You sure about that? The video on the mainpage seems to make a different suggestion.


Link deleted You must annotate whether your link are Work and Family Safe (WFS)

In this video, there isn't a SINGLE proper rack position with the barbell and both Gregg and Annie are using a near exclusive shoulder press to get the bar over their heads.


Link deleted You must annotate whether your link are Work and Family Safe (WFS)
Yes, i am sure about that.

The intensity of a WOD is not the time or place to be trying to enforce the finer points of technique. That's why the videos show all sorts of form errors, because people are busting a** to get through it as quick as possible.

Training is the proper environment for establishing and reinforcing good form, not the heat of battle that is the WOD.

If you aim for perfection in training, then it will translate into excellence or at least a high level of competency, when it's time for the real thing.
If you settle for mediocre or lax form in your training, that will play out as increasingly sloppy form breakdown when it's game day, because you started from such a low point of form to begin with.

...note to self; I will not get involved in another 'form-Nazi vs get-through-it-any-way-you-can' discussion...
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Last edited by Camille Lore; 07-14-2009 at 05:49 PM.. Reason: WFS designation
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Old 07-14-2009, 08:29 PM   #7
Dan Dumsick
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Re: Thrusters and shoulder pain

Seems like every video I have watched they say to point your elbows up and that is fine but to me, it seems like that puts added stress on your wrists then because the bar is going back in your grip (more into your fingers). Maybe that "rolling of the wrists" you are referring to Ted is used to counter that so you don't put stress on the wrist?
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Old 07-15-2009, 03:18 AM   #8
Justin Shipley
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Re: Thrusters and shoulder pain

Yes, you will need to roll the bar back onto the fingers somewhat in order to stop holding the bar in your hands, and get it settled more on the shoulders.

Having the bulk of the weight of the bar on the shoulders is ESSENTIAL for transferring the energy of the hip extension to the bar. Essential.
If you are pressing it, your hip extension (the thrust) from the floor is too slow and/or you have too much weight on the bar.

Hip extension is the prime mover because your posterior chain is a larger, stronger, and more powerful group of muscles, that will fatigue slower, than your shoulders and arms.

In metcon workouts involving lighter thrusters, your posterior chain will continue to operate long after your capacity to press is exhausted.
In heavy single rep thrusters, or threes, you will be using FAR more weight than you can press, and if 'holding' the bar is still occurring, it just won't happen for you.
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Old 07-15-2009, 04:46 AM   #9
Jason Donaldson
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Re: Thrusters and shoulder pain

Totally concur with Justin here. The Thruster is exactly that, thrusting the bar overhead using a violent hip extension. I wouldn't be getting my form tips from too many of the workout videos.

Check out some of the snatch vision from the Games. Some good snatches there, but also some very dodgy snatches. Was the purpose of the WOD to do a good snatch or get the damn bar overhead with something resembling a snatch. I'd say the latter

I train my athletes to use their delts as the shelf, ala front squat & clean. Light fingers on the bar for the squat portion. As they come out of the front squat, transition to more of a press grip and thrust the bar off the shoulders by opening the hip violently. Yes the shoulders do some of the work, but aren't the prime movers. The triceps help to lock it out with the shoulders active at lock out. Regarding the wrists, I train my athletes to roll them from the cocked back, rack position into a straighter locked position for the thrust overhead. This transition is a skill that has to be practiced and mastered if you want a good Thruster IMHO.
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Old 07-15-2009, 05:25 AM   #10
Justin Shipley
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Re: Thrusters and shoulder pain

Jason, I left a message on your mobile... ring me now, brother!
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