How to Fix Shoulder Pain & Impingement (FOREVER)

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If you have shoulder pain when you lift weights or simply lift your arms up over your head, then you’ll want to watch this video. Here I’m going to show you how to fix shoulder pain and impingement forever by attacking the issue at the root cause and giving you the right rotator cuff exercises and progressions to do to get this to go away once and for all.

As always, it starts with a look into the anatomy of the shoulder. First, the source of many problems when it comes to shoulder pain is the supraspinatus tendon. The supraspinatus muscle is one of the muscles of the rotator cuff. It originates on the upper surface of the scapula and feeds through a small space in the shoulder joint to attach to the upper humerus.

Given the limited room inside the joint already because of ligaments, bursa and an already tight shoulder capsule from limited shoulder mobility, the supraspinatus tendon can become pinched when the arm is lifted overhead. This is sometimes the direct cause of the inflammation that one gets and the shoulder tendonitis that one experiences that keeps them from performing upper body exercises without pain.

There is a second important cause of this pain however, that left untreated, will continue to cause a recurrence of the pain without ever getting to the bottom of the real issue. This is the fact that the supraspinatus tendon in the shoulder (as well as the biceps tendon for that matter) have an orientation that leads to them bending around the bone they attach to when the arm is moved into certain positions.

This cause a compression stress on the underside of the tendon. When this occurs, the breakdown of the tendon and resulting inflammation is being caused directly by the inability of the tendon to accommodate to the normal stresses of the joint. Sure, the joint itself becomes even more crowded and unable to safely house the tendon as additional inflammation and swelling mount up. Just doing things to strengthen the rotator cuff in this case to try and open up more room in the joint by positioning the humerus in a more biomechanically safe position isn’t enough.

Your training and rotator cuff exercises have to introduce an element of accommodating the shoulder joint to the stresses that the tendon is ill equipped to handle at this point. The way to do that is pretty simple. You need to use the right exercises, and more importantly, the right progression of exercises to push just as much as the tendon is capable of handling at this point.

We use a banded external rotation exercise and something we call a sword raise to address this.

First thing you want to do with either movement is aim to perform isometric sets. Simply hold the arm in the midrange position and aim to do so for 10 seconds for 5-10 reps. 3-5 sets is enough to get the job done. Ideally, you would save 3-5 days a week to perform this quick but effective routine.

From there, you would increase to a concentric external rotation exercise as able. Same rules apply to the number of sets and days per week that you’d be doing this. Reps could be in the 12-15 range per set.

Continue to work your way up to the stress that you are able to handle without pain.

From there you would introduce a small eccentric stress by adding a step away action. Gradually increase this stress by taking a larger step away and then finally, get to a ballistic or plyometric stress on the tendon by incorporating a small jump out. Increasingly, the tendon will accommodate to the compression stress it incurs, and needs to be able to handle, but only as your body is capable of handling it. Instead of rushing into this and risking further aggravation of symptoms. Do it at this gradual pace and you will be able to fix your shoulder pain once and for all.

For a step by step workout that incorporates corrective exercises into the overall workouts for building ripped athletic muscle, head to at the link below and get the A-X program best suited to your current goals.

For more videos on how to fix shoulder pain and impingement while getting the best rotator cuff exercises to do, be sure to subscribe to our channel at the link below and remember to turn on your notifications so you never miss a new video when it’s published.

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ATHLEAN-X™ says:

Now that you know how to fix your shoulder pain, it's time to grow them. I'll show you how to build bigger, wider shoulders in just 14 days using a single dumbbell –

Mathias Olastuen says:


Thanks for video!

I got some issues with rotator cuff (i can feel it while bench pressing) but its okay in daily life. Should I just take some weeks of training or can I still perform with lighter weights? I'm doing these rotator cuff exercises meanwhile anwyay

Justin Weber says:

Game changer. Thanks

zjunegirl says:

I get a crunching grinding pain in my whole shoulder. (Side, back, front) with throbbing pain! Any recommendations?

Amuuz says:

Great video. Nothing new, but your explanation and videos help a lot.

Mr Hun says:

Thank you so much, first week trying this and I can already feel the relief

Barbell Barbie 2.0 says:

Absolutely going to try. My shoulder has been soo messed up for a months now and is really annoying when I try to do any over head movements or even extending the arm straight laterally. Thanks for posting this great video.

Kay Mizon says:

I wish I saw this video, shoulder pain is chronic from butterfly swims, pull ups, push ups and arthritis in my neck and shoulders. YOU ROCK!

Adam Jussel says:

Dumb question. What is a “round” if you are doing 3-5 rounds, how many reps per round?

Juan castro says:

Is this done on recovery days ?

Pratik Patel says:

Recently my shoulder started paining in particular direction, like during Inclined bench press most, how can I fix it? Tried medicine, pain relief spray, x-ray is Normal still no solution by doctor also 😔

Morgan Zoe Clan Them says:

Can you use cables instead of bands.

Chris Deitrick says:


Thundrax says:

You know what, everytime I do the Concentric. My shoulder felt relief but again when I do presses pain come back. Maybe I need to do more of this

G-Boy says:

I'm fixing my shoulder

Brandon Cook says:

My shoulder has been really bothering me and affecting my shoulder presses big time. I literally can’t do them and my shoulders are now lacking. So frustrating

fake fakerton says:

Jeff, i had shoulder pains for 3 weeks. 600mg Tylenol or ibuprofen or Aleve everyday for a week. Then 300mg everyday for 2 more weeks. Driving and sitting at computer hurt the worst. I did these 2 exercises and 3 days later, 95% of the pain is gone. You are a life saver.

Toan Nguyen says:

Hey Jeff! Would FacePulls be adequate enough for strengthening the Rotator Cuff?

Toan Nguyen says:

Sword Raise…..I call it Disco Baby.

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