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Biceps Tendinitis? Here's your fix.

Biceps tendinitis sucks.


I had a wicked case of it in college.


I wish I would have known then, what I know now.


I guess that's how it works with most things.


Let's dive in.


Table of Contents:

- Where is biceps tendinitis located?

- What is Biceps Tendinitis?

- Tendons are unique

- How do I AVOID it?

- Exercises to solve biceps tendinitis



Where is biceps tendinitis located?


While I am guessing you can get close from the name, it's not 100% obvious.


Yes, it has to do with your bicep, but the tendon being effected by this injury is actually up closer to your shoulder.


This is where the biceps tendon connects up into the bones of the shoulder joint.


If you take your fingers and dig into that upper bicep/shoulder area, and you have biceps tendinitis, you'll probably notice quite a bit of pain.


Fear not, there are things we can do to speed up the recovery process and build future resilience!


What is biceps tendinitis?


It's an injury to the tendon of the biceps - most often the long head of the biceps tendon.


Tendon injuries are caused by repeated exposure to high velocity activity.


For example, a golf swing, a softball swing, basically anything that exposes the upper body to higher velocity activity, over time, can damage the tendon if we aren't taking the proper steps to keep the tendon healthy and resilient.


Tendons are Unique


Tendons aren't like other bodily tissue that can just heal up, scar-free.


When a tendon gets injured, inflammation will be created in the area - which is good!


This is how the body heals injuries.


However, with tendons that struggle to recover, the inflammation process will come and go, leaving a not fully repaired tendon still remaining.


Here's how tendinitis works for most athletes...


Your tendon pain flairs up one day

You give it a couple weeks to calm down.

The pain goes away.

You go back to the activity and what do ya know... there it is again.


It's because you didn't actually heal the tendon or make it stronger, you just rested and let the inflammation process come and go.


In order to truly heal and build future resilience within a tendon, we need to LOAD IT.


Tendons have a viscoelastic property, meaning that under a constant load, it will deform and relax.


This stress relaxation will promote recovery from injury and also future resilience - it also can function as a pain reliever!


With most occurrences of tendinitis, if you load the tendon properly with an isometric exercise, their may be some discomfort while under load, but throughout the set, pain starts to fade away, the tendon relaxes, and often that pain will be gone for hours after completing the isometric exercise.

 
 

How do I AVOID biceps tendinitis?


Before diving into the solution, let's talk about avoiding it.


First and foremost, be a healthy human being.


Eat nutritious food. Don't booze too much. Hydrate. Get consistent exposure to sunlight and nature. Move your body throughout the day. Maintain healthy social relationships.


SECONDLY, strength train multiple times per week.


And, I'll add to that, HOLISTICALLY.


Train the upper body, train the lower body.


Use compound movements like squats, deadlifts, push ups, rows, pull ups, etc.


THIRDLY, do the isometric exercises below weekly.


They only take 4-6 minutes. Add them to your warm-up or cool down once or twice a week.


Get them done, build some juicy tendons.


Solving Biceps Tendinitis


I've got two exercises that you should be doing MULTIPLE times per week (3-5 times would be ideal). They will help promote healing of the biceps tendon and future resilience... to get you back on the course at 100%!


Make sure to surround these exercises with a holistic strength program.


Don't push into too much pain at any point (keep it below a 3/10 on the pain scale).


And, lastly, make sure to be prioritizing all the components of a healthy, well-rounded lifestyle as these will all effect the recovery process... nutrition, hydration, sleep and recovery, etc.



Exercise 1: PVC Curl ISO


Hold a foam roll on your butt, as shown in the video above, by isometrically curling a PVC pipe.


From this position, you are actively trying to curl the PVC pipe, bending it around the foam roll.


Apply a force of ~50%, or as much as you can remaining fairly pain free.


Accumulate 2-3 minutes in this active curling position.


Break into as many sets as you need.


Exercise 2: Push Up ISO


Pretty straight forward one here...


Sink deep. If you can, try elevating your hands onto a box in order to achieve a greater range of motion.


Hold it for 2-3 minutes, breaking into as many sets as needed!


If you need a regressed version of the exercise, 3 options for you:

[1.] Put your hands onto a bench or box.

[2.] Attach a band to a pull-up bar and wrap it around your hips to assist.

[3.] Simultaneously use both 1 and 2.


NOTE: I made this video below for golfer's elbow... but it very much applies to tendinitis at the shoulder joint as well.

 

I hope this helps you get over your biceps tendinitis and get back on the course at 100%.


Don't hesitate to reach out with questions.


Let's go low!


Carter Schmitz

Founder: SCRATCHGolfTraining.com