The shoulder press or military press is considered as a basic, upper body exercise that focuses on all the major muscles in the shoulder. This exercise is typically performed using dumbbells or by simply using a barbell and lifting the weight over the head. Once there is substantial weight or constant overhead motion, there is increased risk for shoulder injuries.
Among many individuals who include the use of weights in their workout routine, the shoulder press is considered one of the favorites. As long as the right technique is observed when executing this workout, the risk for injuries is drastically reduced.
The shoulder press allows freedom of movement while performing the exercise which can avert any shoulder injuries from taking place. On the other hand, incorrect form can result to an instability injury.
An instability injury ensues once a shoulder joint is thrusted or driven out of its normal position which can occur during the shoulder press if the individual lifts a heavy weight or loses control of the dumbbell during the workout. It is not advisable not to try an overhead lift without a skilled spotter present in case the individual could not properly complete the lift.
Constant and excessive overhead movement is one of the main causes of shoulder injuries. Impingement is triggered by excessive rubbing of the shoulder muscles against the upper part of the shoulder blade. In most cases, impingement can occur from any form of shoulder press and can bring about the inflammation or engorgement of the shoulder muscles. In case inflammation starts to set in, it is best to seek medical care before the injury gets worse.
Any injuries to the back are also common among those who perform shoulder press exercises. Back injuries are mainly caused by lack of back support during an exercise routine. Remember that this can happen while performing a seated or standing dumbbell press and typically develops once the weight is too heavy and the individual leans back in an attempt to keep the weight back up. This reduces the effectiveness of the exercise and adds additional strain on the lower back.
Rotator cuff injuries
The barbell shoulder press or the military press is an exercise that can damage the shoulder muscle. Substantial load and incorrect form are the usual causes of injury while performing the military press. When performing this exercise, it is vital to bring the barbell down in front instead of behind the back.
The behind the neck version can place substantial strain on the rotator cuff due to the hyperextension produced by bringing the bar behind the neck. In case the rotator cuff is damaged, the shoulder muscles of the individual might lose full function.