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Pull-ups & Neck Pain


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Excerpt: Hello, I was doing my daily pull-ups in the morning yesterday. After about 5 pull-ups I felt a strain in my neck and now my neck hurts like crazy. I get a strong pain when I try to turn my head. Applied bengay and ice pack & its subsided but still fee pain. No, I did not warm up for pullups. What are some warm ups for this excerise. Should I go see a doctor?

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  1. #1
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    Question Pull-ups & Neck Pain

    Hello,

    I was doing my daily pull-ups in the morning yesterday. After about 5 pull-ups I felt a strain in my neck and now my neck hurts like crazy.

    I get a strong pain when I try to turn my head. Applied bengay and ice pack & its subsided but still fee pain.

    No, I did not warm up for pullups. What are some warm ups for this excerise.

    Should I go see a doctor?

    Worried
    Fess

  2. #2
    Pro Bodybuilder KIAN's Avatar
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    Re: Pull-ups & Neck Pain

    If you are performing pull-ups or any exercise on a daily basis then you are overworking your muscles and this can leave yourself open to injury. In some cases it can also lead to a reduction in muscle mass. More is not always better. Also, make sure that when you perform a pull-up, that you are raising yourself up infront of the bar and not behind your head (neck) as this position can put added stress on the deltoid and trapezius muscles. The same if you were performing a lat pull-down. Pull the bar down to the top of your chest and not behind your neck.

    If you have sustained an injury, then you will have to allow the injury to heal sufficiently before attempting any exercise which utilises this muscle group. So, as hard as it may be to do, you are going to have to rest up for a few days. You can also put an ice pack on your neck and shoulders for 20 to 30 minutes every 3 to 4 hours for 2 to 3 days or until the pain goes away. If there is still discomfort in the area after 4 days, consult with a physician. If there is any redness or swelling in the immediate area or if the pain or discomfort extends down into your arms or hands then you will want to see a physician now. The neck is complex so the possible injuries can range from strained muscle/ligament to torn muscle or pinched nerve or compressed vertebrae. Only with a proper examination will you know for sure.

    Whenever you warm up your muscles you want to do so in a manner in which they are not overstressed. This means not using external weights or overextending the muscle through its range of motion. Your own bodyweight in pressing, pulling and stretching movements is more than enough resistance. For each of the stretching exercises listed below, you will want to try to achieve a minimum of five stretches per movement. Make sure you don't force the stretch as your range of motion will not be sufficient if this is new to you.

    DO NOT attempt any of these exercises until your neck is free of any discomfort:

    Flexion Stretch - Chin to Chest:
    • slowly bend your head forward while bringing your chin toward your chest
    • stop when a stretch is felt in the back of your neck
    • hold this position for a brief period
    • return to the starting position
    • repeat

    Extension Stretch - Eyes to Sky:
    • slowly bend your head backward so that your eyes are looking up to the "sky"
    • stop when a stretch is felt in the front of your neck
    • hold this position for a brief period
    • return to the starting position
    • repeat

    Rotation - Side to Side:
    • slowly turn your head to the left looking over your left shoulder
    • stop when a stretch is felt in the right side of your neck
    • hold this position for a brief period
    • return to the starting position
    • repeat
    • slowly turn your head to the right looking over your right shoulder
    • stop when a stretch is felt in the left side of your neck
    • hold position for a brief period
    • return to the starting position
    • repeat

    Lateral Flexion - Ear to Shoulder:
    • slowly bend your neck by attempting to touch your left ear to your shoulder
    • stop when a stretch is felt in the right side of your neck
    • hold this position for a brief period
    • return to the starting position
    • repeat
    • slowly bend your neck by attempting to touch your right ear to your shoulder
    • stop when a stretch is felt in the left side of your neck
    • hold this position for a brief period
    • return to the starting position
    • repeat



    Welcome to EF btw.
    Hopefully the future will be more enjoyable for you.

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  3. #3
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    Re: Pull-ups & Neck Pain

    KIAN,

    I appreciate your attention to detail. I'll archive your instructions and follow them in the mornings before my 1st set of pull-ups.

    My pull-up workflow has no time set. I work at home, so when ever I pass the bar, I bang out 10 pulls. My injury occurred in the morning on my first set.

    Thanks for you help........congrats on your new baby

    Fess

  4. #4
    Pro Bodybuilder KIAN's Avatar
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    Re: Pull-ups & Neck Pain

    Quote Quote posted by Fess
    Thanks for you help........congrats on your new baby

    Fess
    Thanks mate, but we still have about 7 weeks to go.
    You are more anxious than I am, lol.

    Once you get over your injury, try and set up a structured workout routine for yourself so that you are not just doing it when you happen to walk by the equipment. The results will be more long lasting and the chances of injury will be far less.


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  5. #5
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    Re: Pull-ups & Neck Pain

    Hi Kian!
    This is Fess' friend.
    We both thank you for your answers, finally there is someone who he listens to.
    I also have questions for you: If I work on certain bodyparts -like abs- every day, are the muscles going to grow or I'll achieve the opposit? Also, I've heard that I should change my regular work out's (such as angles and different movements) after a while because the muscles get used to it and won't grow anymore. Is this true?
    Thank you very much for the answer!

  6. #6
    Pro Bodybuilder KIAN's Avatar
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    Re: Pull-ups & Neck Pain

    Hey Fess' friend.
    This is Kian

    Although some people will tell you that the abdominals are one muscle group which you can train every day with good results, the fact that they are comprised of muscle tissue means that they require rest just like any other muscle to develop properly. So whether it is chest, abs, bis, etc., you will want to set up a workout routine which will allow atleast one days rest between exercising the same muscle group to ensure optimum development.

    For your other question ... Your muscles will develop within their genetic potential and as a result of resistance training supported by a healthy diet. So as long as you train and eat right, your muscles will develop. BUT they will not keep developing for ever and ever. As you are reading this, you have lost somewhere between 200,000 and 3,000,000 cells every second. If you are very young, the vast majority of these cells will have been replaced. As you get older, this regenerative process gets less efficient. No matter what you do or try, the number of cells you lose will gradually increase and the number of cells replaced will gradually decrease. Since muscle is comprised of tissue which is comprised of cells, this slow-down in the regenerative process also affects muscle. This is where your genetic potential will be seen. If you have good genes then you will be able to develop your physique further than others and to a later point in your life. If not, then you will find out that gravity really does suck.

    So your training should ensure that each muscle group (ie: Chest - pectoralis major/sternal, pectoralis major/clavicular, pectoralis minor, serratus anterior) is utilised through its complete range of motion to maximise development. This can be achieved in the following manner:
    • by performing a variety of exercises targeting a specific muscle group
    • changing the angle of the movement
    • changing the mechanics of the exercise from a compound to an isolated movement or visa/versa
    • change the movement from a push (press) to a pull or visa/versa
    • increase the resistance (additional weight)
    • increase the number of sets - see note
    • increase the frequency of your training - see note

    NOTE: For the last two points you will have to find a balance which suits your training and expectations. Remember that you need rest for your body to repair itself and for your muscles to develop. Overtraining is detrimental to your overall development and, in some cases, you will lose mass, so take your time and find out what works best for you.


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  7. #7
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    Re: Pull-ups & Neck Pain

    Sorry bro......

    My girl wanted to dispute my workout techniques and is insistant on being a "last word freak".

    I've read "Power Eating", studied a few vids and some lit. on the internet. She still thinks she know more about working out than me.

    She's a "crash" dieter......can you tell her the negative effects of this, because she doesn't listen to me in this regard.

    Fess

  8. #8
    Pro Bodybuilder KIAN's Avatar
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    Re: Pull-ups & Neck Pain

    Crash diets are used by individuals who have a limited understanding of nutrition and who want quick results with very litttle effort. The results are usually short-lived and achieved in an unhealthy manner. A 'crash diet' involves restricting your caloric intake, in some cases, to a point where your body goes into a starvation mode. The result is a loss of muscle mass first, followed by a reduction in body fat. If this crash diet is taken to the extreme of becoming a fast then the side effects can be more serious. In some cases, a limited fast of up to 4 days can have beneficial properties. Past this point and without the supervision of a physician and you can expect any of the following to occur:

    Possible side effects:
    • dehydration (sometimes severe)
    • diarrhoea
    • dizzyness
    • headaches
    • anxiety attacks
    • extreme weight loss
    • lower body temperature
    • lower blood pressure
    • reduced or rapid heart rate
    • difficulty breathing
    • gallstones
    • potassium deficency
    • heart arrhythmia
    • build-up of keytones
    • kidney failure (long fasts)
    • extreme lethargy
    • nausea / vomiting
    • rare enzyme deficiency (MCAD) leading to an inability to process fatty acids
    • insomnia
    • coated tongue
    • increased body odour
    • increased discharge from mucous membranes
    • skin rashes
    • gout


    If you wish to lose body fat, then learn the basics of nutrition and how your own body responds. Then adjust your diet and incorporate a structured workout program involving high intensity cardiovascular activity and weight training. This all takes time but the results are achieved in a healthy manner and will last longer.


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  9. #9
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    Re: Pull-ups & Neck Pain

    As long as you have no headaches, changes in vision, changes in your hearing, or numbness/tingling/weakness in your arms, then you most likely have a strain.

    See a doc if it continues. You can take some ibuprofen for inflammation.

  10. #10
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    Re: Pull-ups & Neck Pain

    Quote Quote posted by Fess
    Hello,

    I was doing my daily pull-ups in the morning yesterday. After about 5 pull-ups I felt a strain in my neck and now my neck hurts like crazy.

    I get a strong pain when I try to turn my head. Applied bengay and ice pack & its subsided but still fee pain.

    No, I did not warm up for pullups. What are some warm ups for this excerise.

    Should I go see a doctor?

    Worried
    Fess
    There is two different ways you can do this exercise; behind the neck and in front. My doctor said to never do them behind the neck because it is not a natural movement for the axis of rotation, therefor putting an unnecessary strain on the muscles, tendons and linking cartliges. Rest it-Heat it-Then go back and train smart!

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