Why Does My Collarbone Hurt After Chest Workout? Everything You Need To Know

L J Kudos
Why does my collarbone hurt after chest workout?

Why Does My Collarbone Hurt After Chest Workout? Everything You Need To Know

If you’re a fitness enthusiast, chances are you’ve felt the pain in your collarbone after an intense chest workout. It’s something that happens from time to time, and it can be really uncomfortable to deal with, not to mention discouraging for those striving for their strength goals.

But why does our collarbone hurt after this kind of exercise? You’d think that if all other muscles were doing what they were supposed to do then the area around our collarbones should remain relatively pain-free, right?

In this blog post, we explore why exactly this might be happening and provide helpful tips on how to reduce or prevent pain in the area.

Why does my collarbone hurt after chest workout?

There are several reasons why your collarbone might be hurting after a chest workout. One of the most common causes is distal clavicular osteolysis, also known as weightlifter’s shoulder. This condition occurs when the joint between the collarbone and sternum becomes worn down due to repetitive strain from heavy lifting or other chest exercises. Other causes of pain in the collarbone area after a chest workout may include a previous injury, fracture or break. Sternoclavicular joint separation, acromioclavicular (AC) joint dislocation, thoracic outlet syndrome, osteoarthritis, frozen shoulder, rotator cuff tendonitis and myofascial pain syndrome may also be responsible. Other factors that might contribute to your collarbone pain include your grip width, bar path, range of motion (ROM) issues, lifting weights that are too heavy for your current strength level or poor form during the exercise.

Clavicle essentials

Your shoulder has three main joints: the acromioclavicular, glenohumeral and sternoclavicular. All of these are vital to the function of your shoulder, but especially your collarbone (or clavicle).

Your collarbone, is the bone that connects your sternum to your shoulder blade. It is important for the stability of your shoulder joint and allows you to move your arm in different directions.

Understanding how your collarbone works and how it relates to other muscles in the chest and shoulder area can help you better understand why it is hurting after a chest workout.

More often than not, the pain in your collarbone would be down to poor form or lifting a load thats too heavy (more on these shortly), but occasionly it could be down to something more serious, such as the one of the below

Distal clavicular osteolysis

Distal clavicular osteolysis is a condition that results from repetitive strain on the joint between the collarbone and sternum.

It is more commonly known as weightlifter’s shoulder and is often caused by using improper form or lifting weights that are too heavy for your current strength level. Over time, the strain on the joint causes it to break down and weaken, resulting in pain and discomfort.

This is very common for weight lifters, power lifters and body builders, due to the repetitive strain of pressing, pushing and pulling exercises that they do. Over time, this can lead to joint pain or other injuries.

In order to prevent this condition from occurring, it is important to ensure that you are using the correct form when performing chest exercises and that you are lifting weights that are appropriate for your strength level.

If you’re having any collarbone issues, especially when lifting weights, it’s important that you consult with a doctor or physiotherapist.

Sternoclavicular Joint Separation

Sternoclavicular joint separation is a condition that occurs when the joint between the collarbone and sternum becomes separated due to trauma or injury.

This normally occurs when there is a direct impact to the area, such as a fall or car accident. The result can be pain and swelling in the shoulder area, as well as a visible gap between the collarbone and sternum.

This can cause the collarbone to become displaced, resulting in pain and discomfort. This normally requires a physician’s care in order to properly treat it, as surgery may be necessary.

Although it’s not common, you may experience collarbone pain if you have recently suffered a shoulder injury or trauma.

This would be extremely painful and require medical attention, as the joint would need to be reset and stabilized.

Acromioclavicular (AC) joint

The acromioclavicular (AC) joint is the joint located between the collarbone and shoulder blade. This joint can become dislocated if there is a direct impact or force to the area.

People who participate in contact sports, such as football or rugby, are particularly prone to this injury. Symptoms can include pain and swelling in the area, as well as a visible bump or deformity in the shoulder area.

This can also be caused by repetitive strain over time, such as from heavy lifting or other chest exercises.

Treatment for this injury normally involves immobilization with a sling or splint in order to protect the joint and allow it to heal.

Surgery may also be necessary in some cases, as well as physical therapy to help strengthen and restore mobility to the joint.

Why does my collarbone hurt after chest workout?

Thoracic outlet syndrome

Thoracic outlet syndrome is a condition that can cause pain in the shoulder area, as well as numbness and tingling in the arm and hand.

It is caused by compression of the nerves and blood vessels in the thoracic outlet, which is located between the collarbone and first rib.

This may be caused by repetitive motions, such as those involved in weightlifting or other chest exercises. It can also be caused by muscular imbalances or structural abnormalities of the bones in the area.

Treatment for this condition normally involves rest and physical therapy to help reduce the symptoms and improve the range of motion in the shoulder area.

Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is a condition that can affect the joints in the body. It is caused by wear and tear on the joint over time, resulting in stiffness and pain.

This can occur in the collarbone area after a chest workout due to repetitive strain on the joint, or if there has been a previous injury.

Treatment for this condition usually involves rest and pain relief medications, as well as physical therapy to help improve range of motion and strength in the area.

Some people may also benefit from joint injections or surgery, depending on the severity of the condition.

Frozen shoulder

Frozen shoulder is a condition that can occur when the shoulder becomes stiff and immobile due to swelling or inflammation in the joint.

This can be due to a previous injury, or it can occur from repetitive strain from heavy lifting or other chest exercises.

The symptoms of this condition can include pain and stiffness, as well as a reduced range of motion in the shoulder area.

Treatment for this condition usually involves rest, physical therapy, and medications to reduce the inflammation and pain. Some people may also benefit from joint injections or surgery, depending on the severity of their condition.

If you experience pain in your collarbone area after a chest workout, it is important to see a doctor for an evaluation.

They can help determine the cause of your pain and provide you with proper treatment options in order to reduce your symptoms and help you return to normal activities. With the right treatment, you should be able to find relief from your collarbone pain.

Related: Why Do I Feel My Lats When Doing Push Ups? 

Rotator Cuff Tendonitis

Rotator cuff tendonitis is a condition that occurs when the tendons of the rotator cuff become inflamed. This can be caused by repetitive strain on the area, such as from heavy lifting or other chest exercises.

The symptoms of this condition can include pain and swelling in the shoulder area, as well as difficulty in moving the shoulder.

Treatment for this condition normally involves rest and medications to reduce inflammation, as well as physical therapy to help improve range of motion and strength in the area. Surgery may also be necessary in some cases.

You can feel this kind of injury at the collarbone area, so if you’ve been experiencing pain there after a chest workout, it is important to see a doctor to get an accurate diagnosis and the right treatment.

Myofascial Pain Syndrome

Myofascial pain syndrome is a condition that can occur when the muscles in the shoulder area become tight and inflamed. This can be caused by repetitive strain on the area, such as from heavy lifting or other chest exercises.

The symptoms of this condition can include pain and tenderness in the shoulder area, as well as difficulty in moving the joint.

Treatment for this condition usually involves rest and medications to reduce inflammation, as well as physical therapy to help improve range of motion and strength in the area. Trigger point injections may also be necessary in some cases.

Previous injury, fracture or broken bone

If you’ve experienced a previous injury, fracture or break in the collarbone area, this could be the cause of your pain after a chest workout.

The symptoms of this condition can include pain, swelling and difficulty in moving the shoulder. Treatment for this condition usually involves rest and medications to reduce inflammation, as well as physical therapy to help improve range of motion and strength in the area.

Surgery may also be necessary in some cases, depending on the severity of your condition. It’s crucial to ensure the point of injury has completely healed before doing any chest exercises after you experience trauma in the collarbone area.

Ligaments or tendon damage 

Damage to the ligaments or tendons of the shoulder area can also cause pain in the collarbone after a chest workout. This can be caused by strain on the area due to heavy lifting or other chest exercises.

The symptoms of this condition can include pain and swelling in the shoulder area, as well as difficulty in moving the joint.

Treatment for this condition usually involves rest and medications to reduce inflammation, as well as physical therapy to help improve range of motion and strength in the area. Surgery may also be necessary in some cases.

In addition to some of the more severe symptoms, there are also general reasons you might feel pain in your collarbone area.

Grip width

Using a wider grip while performing chest exercises can put more strain on the shoulder area and cause pain in the collarbone.

This is because a wider grip can cause the shoulders to be in a more stretched position, which can lead to fatigue and strain on the joint.

If you have a grip thats too narrow, then it can put extra strain on the shoulder joint because you’re not able to generate enough force.

To avoid this, it’s important to use proper form when doing chest exercises and to ensure that you are using the appropriate grip width for your body.

It is important to experiment with different grip widths until you find one that works for you.

The general rule of thumb is to keep your hands just wider than shoulder-width apart when doing chest exercises, as this will put the least amount of strain on the shoulder joint.

Why does my collarbone hurt after chest workout?

Bar path

Your form can also have an effect on the strain placed on the shoulder joint.

If you’re doing chest exercises with a barbell, then it’s important to ensure that you are using the correct bar path.

The bar should start at the chest and move up and out in a straight line until it reaches the top position, and then return in the same line back to the starting position.

Using a curved bar path can put more strain on the shoulder joint and cause pain in the collarbone area, because the muscles are being worked in an unnatural way.

When people press the bar too high on their body, closer to their chin than chest, it often causes pain in the collarbone area.

It’s important to practice proper form when doing chest exercises to avoid this problem and ensure that you’re getting the most out of your workout.

ROM issues

Range of motion (ROM) issues can also be a cause of pain in the collarbone area after a chest workout.

If you have poor posture or have difficulty in moving your shoulders through a full range of motion, then this can cause strain and pain in the collarbone area.

It’s important to practice proper posture when doing chest exercises and also to make sure you are using the full range of motion that your body is capable of.

By doing this, you can reduce the risk of pain in the collarbone area after a chest workout.

It is also important to stretch the shoulder area before and after a workout, as this can help improve range of motion and reduce the risk of injury.

Related: Why is dumbbell bench press harder than barbell bench press?

Too heavy

Another common cause of pain in the collarbone area after a chest workout is simply lifting too heavy of a weight.

This can put extra strain and pressure on the shoulder joint, resulting in pain and discomfort.

It’s important to ensure that you are using weights that are appropriate for your body and fitness level in order to avoid this problem.

Start with a lighter weight and gradually increase the amount of weight you’re lifting as your strength increases.

Make sure you get your form down before attempting any heavy lifts and use the perfect grip width for you.

Most of the problems people face in the gym are from trying to lift too heavy of a weight before they have the form and strength to do so.

Make sure you can competently lift the weight when doing 6-10 reps before increasing the weight.

Poor form 

Finally, having poor form when doing chest exercises can also cause pain in the collarbone area.

It’s important to ensure that you’re using proper form and technique when doing chest exercises in order to avoid this problem.

Focus on the muscles you are trying to target and ensure that you are using the correct grip width and bar path.

Using proper form will not only reduce the risk of pain in the collarbone area after a chest workout, but it will also help you get the most out of your workouts.

Take time to understand and practice good form before attempting any heavy lifts.

Make sure you are performing the exercise with full range of motion and not cutting any corners.

If you feel any pain or discomfort in the collarbone area after a chest workout, then it’s important to stop and rest.

Final thoughts…

If your collarbone is hurting after a chest workout, it could be due to one of several reasons. Distal clavicular osteolysis, a previous injury or fracture, sternoclavicular joint separation, AC joint dislocation, thoracic outlet syndrome, osteoarthritis, frozen shoulder and ROM issues can all be causes of pain in the collarbone area after a chest workout.

Poor form, using too heavy of a weight, and having an incorrect bar path can also cause pain in this area. It’s important to ensure you are using proper form and technique, an appropriate weight, and a good range of motion when doing chest exercises in order to reduce the risk of pain.

If you do experience pain or discomfort, then it’s important to stop and rest. If the pain persists for more than a few days, then it’s best to consult with a doctor or physical therapist.

By understanding the possible causes of pain in the collarbone area after a chest workout and taking the necessary precautions to prevent it, you can enjoy a safe and successful workout! ​

Have you felt pain in your collarbone after a chest workout? Let me know in the comments below.

If you enjoy sport and use CBD to help with your recovery in between gruelling workouts, then you are in the right place. Here at Sport CBDs, we train hard and recover the best way possible…

We have regular workouts (check out the YouTube channel), CBD news and CBD products to help you gain that edge! 

If you wanted to check out the reputable CBD we have on offer here at the site, then please head to the Sport CBDs Store (CLICK HERE). We also do fitness clothing and yoga accessories too. 

Until next time, all the best…

Beginners Upper Body Kettlebell Workout

Lee

Founder – Sport CBDs

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