The Most Common Gym Injury (FIXED | PREVENTED!)

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The most common gym injury is also the one that we have the least amount of understanding of how we are doing it. That creates a major problem. In this video, I’m going to show you what the number one workout injury is and most importantly, the real cause of it and how to prevent it from happening in the first place.

The source of the pain we are talking about is in the elbow. The all too common burning, knife-like pain that you get at the inside of your elbow when doing any pulling exercise like chin ups, weighted chins, rows or even pullups is unique and debilitating. Ask anyone that is dealing with this pain currently and they are sure to tell you they have either had to modify the exercises they are doing or stop working out all together.

This doesn’t have to be the case. If we can understand the way the body is being overloaded here and help to take the brunt of the force away from the muscles that aren’t equipped to handle them then we can be well on our way to preventing this injury from happening and a step closer to never having it happen again.

The formal term for the injury is medial epicondylitis or golfers elbow. Some will tell you that this is an overuse injury and I would strongly disagree. This is definitely more of an overload injury and one that can occur or reoccur with a single rep on a single set of a workout done with heavy weights on a pulling exercise. The mechanism is one that the flexor digitorum superficialis is ill equipped to handle the stresses placed on it by having the bar or pullup bar too distal in your fingers rather than in your hands.

If you allow the bar to sit in your last two joints of your fingers then you are asking the SDF to bear the load and resist extension of the fingers that is induced by either the weight of the bar or the weight of your body during the exercise. This is avoided by simply shifting the bar lower into your hands and grasping it with a stronger grip, much less of a false grip. One of the rules of thumb I use is for you to check how visible your finger tips are to you when you look down at them grasping the bar.

If you can’t see all of your fingernails, and ideally even the first knuckle of every finger, when you look at your hand gripping the bar then you have too weak of a grip and are likely to have it drift on you during the later reps of the sets as the bar starts to feel heavier with mounting fatigue. You need to be able to see all of your first knuckles to ensure that the bar is wrapped tightly in your hand across the callouses.

When you make this tweak you will instantly find that the pain will subside. You will also want to become more aware of the amount of pressure you are putting through your 4th and 5th fingers (the ring and pinky fingers) when you grab a bar or pullup bar. The tendency is to want to grip these very tight with the last two fingers but you should intentionally ease off with those two and increase the force you press through the fist three with.

If the injury has already occurred and you are now dealing with the stabbing like symptoms that come with doing certain exercises the best advice would be for you to ice the area, stretch it as I show you in the video, and lay off the movements that are difficult for the next 6-8 weeks. While this is tough for some to swallow, it will help you to get back to baseline from which you can build back up and prevent this from ever happening again by following the advice given here.

We put the science and anatomy in all of our training videos in order to take your training and understanding to a whole new level. When you want to look like an athlete you have to train like an athlete and take your training seriously. I offer you the same exact step by step workouts and nutrition plans that I do my pro athletes at within the ATHLEAN-X Training Systems.

For more videos on how to do more pullups and the best way to fix elbow pain from working out, be sure to subscribe to our channel here on youtube at

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