Tip For Elbow Pain During Bicep Curls

Have you ever experienced a pain bordering excruciating in the forearm or inner side of the elbow while curling? This pain usually appears during the eccentric motion of the repetition. When worsened, the lifter is unable to lift any significant load and also negatively impacts other activities like throwing and pulling.

Usually, the reason behind it is sloppy technique or ego lifting. When a lifter tries to lift too much weight than his biceps brachii muscles are capable of, it leads to the irritation of tendon or medial epicondylitis. It is different from lateral epicondylitis or tennis elbow. If the problem is severe than rest, bandaging, pain relievers, physiotherapy, laser therapy (Zlatko) or ultimately surgery is the solution. In less severe cases, take into account the below pointers:

  • Grip the bar as tightly as you can.

A tight grip activates the synergistic muscles of the forearm and takes some stress off the irritated structure. You’ll immediately feel a reduction in pain with this during lifting.

  • Work on your grip.

A weak grip strength is not only detrimental to performance, but it can also lead to nasty injuries which can keep you out of action for quite a while. Use methods like thick bar hold or farmers walk to develop a crushing grip. Also, you can use a fat bar for all of your back and biceps work.

  • Balance the uncoupled forces around the elbow joint.

Your elbow flexor strength varies with the grip in the following order:

Neutral Grip > Supinated Grip > Pronated Grip

When an ego lifter tries to curl as much weight as he can, he emphasizes neutral grip with almost every bicep exercise. Like, EZ bar curls, dumbbell supinating curls, hammer curls, cross body curls or a combination in order to inflate numbers. This over-emphasis on neutral grip ensues into unbalanced forces over the elbow joint leading to trauma. You should balance it by using strict supinated and pronated curls with a moderately heavy weight. It will balance out the strength of your elbow flexors & wrist extensors and will make you injury proof.

  • Jobe, Frank W. MD; Ciccotti, Michael G. MD. Lateral and Medial Epicondylitis of the Elbow. Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, January/February 1994 Volume 2 Issue 1 pp 1-8.
  • ZLATKO SIMUNOVIC, TATJANA TROBONJACA, and ZLATKO TROBONJACA. Treatment of Medial and Lateral Epicondylitis—Tennis and Golfer’s Elbow—with Low Level Laser Therapy: A Multicenter Double Blind, Placebo-Controlled Clinical Study on 324 Patients. Journal of Clinical Laser Medicine & Surgery. April 2009, 16(3): 145-151.

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