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  • Posted On: 07-17-19, 12:07 am (EDT) #1

    Is pain with Barbell Reverse Curl 'normal'?

    July 17, 2019, 12:07 am

    Typically I can curl 60-70 pounds for multiple sets with no problem using a regular grip.

     

    When I do barbell reverse curls, I get some significant pain at the top of the rep in my right bicep. In particular I feel it close to my elbow. It's like painful twitch. I feel some discomfort build up throughout the rep and then when I get to the top, I get a very sharp twitch-like pain. My left arm is completely fine throughout the rep. I am left handed (idk if that matters or not).

     

    When I do regular curls or hammer curls, I feel no pain at all in either bicep. As far as I can remember, I've never had any injuries to my right bicep.

     

    When I grab a 20 pound ez curl bar and go super slow, I can do a rep without feeling pain, but I still feel a 'weirdness' or discomfort in my right bicep at the same location (near the elbow).

     

    When I work out slow with light weight, I feel like I'm wasting my time. If try heavier weight, I can't make it through a set due to the pain.

     

    Should I work through this with the light weight and see what happens? or Should I avoid this exercise and replace it with something else?

     

    Thanks!

  • Posted On: 10-07-19, 9:29 pm (EDT) #2

    Is pain with Barbell Reverse Curl 'normal'?

    October 7, 2019, 9:29 pm

    Hey Joe,

     

    Can you upload a video to YouTube of you doing a reverse curl so I can see your form?

     

    Also, can you upload a photo of your arm and CIRCLE where it hurts?

     

    I think with a bit more information we can get to the bottom of this.

     

    Thanks!

  • Posted On: 10-13-19, 12:18 pm (EDT) #3

    Is pain with Barbell Reverse Curl 'normal'?

    October 13, 2019, 12:18 pm

    Hey Scott,

     

    Thanks, will do. I recently gave up on the exercise and switched over to hammer curls because I wasn't making any progress with the reverse grip curl. I had to keep the weight too low and couldn't overload with it at all.

     

    I'm willing to revisit the exercise though. Not too sure about the differences between reverse grip and hammer curls, but at the very least, training both arms together will cut the training time in half lol. Plus given how much harder the reverse grip variation is to do compared to the others... seems like there are gains to be had here if I can do them.

     

    I'll post the video/image later this week.

     

    Thanks again

     

    -Joe

  • Posted On: 10-14-19, 4:56 pm (EDT) #4

    Is pain with Barbell Reverse Curl 'normal'?

    October 14, 2019, 4:56 pm
    Posted by: vague_advice

    Hey Scott,

     

    Thanks, will do. I recently gave up on the exercise and switched over to hammer curls because I wasn't making any progress with the reverse grip curl. I had to keep the weight too low and couldn't overload with it at all.

     

    I'm willing to revisit the exercise though. Not too sure about the differences between reverse grip and hammer curls, but at the very least, training both arms together will cut the training time in half lol. Plus given how much harder the reverse grip variation is to do compared to the others... seems like there are gains to be had here if I can do them.

     

    I'll post the video/image later this week.

     

    Thanks again

     

    -Joe

    @vague_advice Sounds good Joe!

     

    It could be that you have some tightness somewhere that is limiting your pronation so when you try to do a reverse curl, you're getting pain. But we will take a look!

     

    Reverse curls typically hit your brachioradialis a bit more than hammer curls, whereas hammer curls hit your brachialis a bit more.

  • Posted On: 10-18-19, 12:50 am (EDT) #5

    Is pain with Barbell Reverse Curl 'normal'?

    October 18, 2019, 12:50 am

    Hi Scott,


    The plot thickens. I did some reps of reverse grip curls the other day during a leg day thinking I would just grab the video real quick. But I felt completely fine! This was the first set ever where I felt no pain or discomfort on this exercise.


    So then I was like let me do this on pull day... maybe my arms have to be fatigued for the exercise to cause pain. Pull day comes up and on my first set there is no pain again. Second set comes up and on my last rep I feel it happen. After thinking about it, I noticed that on that rep I had let my wrists bend backwards at the top of the rep.


    Lo and behold, I think that was it. When I keep my wrists completely straight throughout the entire rep, I feel no pain. But when I let my wrists bend back at the top, I get a pain that... well you'll see lol.


    Here are the visuals you asked for. Let me know what you think!


    I got my buddy to point out where I feel it. It's around what I think is the outside of the brachialis, between his finger and my freckles.

    Reverse grip curls with pain

    Reverse grip curls without pain

  • Posted On: 10-22-19, 5:54 pm (EDT) #6

    Is pain with Barbell Reverse Curl 'normal'?

    October 22, 2019, 5:54 pm
    Posted by: vague_advice

    Hi Scott,


    The plot thickens. I did some reps of reverse grip curls the other day during a leg day thinking I would just grab the video real quick. But I felt completely fine! This was the first set ever where I felt no pain or discomfort on this exercise.


    So then I was like let me do this on pull day... maybe my arms have to be fatigued for the exercise to cause pain. Pull day comes up and on my first set there is no pain again. Second set comes up and on my last rep I feel it happen. After thinking about it, I noticed that on that rep I had let my wrists bend backwards at the top of the rep.


    Lo and behold, I think that was it. When I keep my wrists completely straight throughout the entire rep, I feel no pain. But when I let my wrists bend back at the top, I get a pain that... well you'll see lol.


    Here are the visuals you asked for. Let me know what you think!


    I got my buddy to point out where I feel it. It's around what I think is the outside of the brachialis, between his finger and my freckles.

    Reverse grip curls with pain

    Reverse grip curls without pain

    @vague_advice Yeah it definitely looks like the is more of a bend in your wrist on the ones where you felt pain so that could definitely be it. It could be your wrist extensors being extra tight (which is probably what is happening when you bend your wrist backwards like that).


    Try digging in and around the top of your forearm and see if you notice anything tight there! But check your wrist flexors (underside of your forearm) as well!

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