Problems Overcompensating?

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Problems Overcompensating?

Post by Scarab23 » Tue Oct 31, 2006 4:18 pm


First let me say thanks for an awesome website and forums, there is a lot of helpful stuff here.

I've been lifting off and on since high school (I'm 23 now) and I've recently invested in some new equipnment. I've recommitted myself to staying in shape and I'm excited to lift regularly again, but I'm noticing some problems. Specifically, my arms and shoulders are so much stronger than my chest and back, that I feel like I'm not getting the workout I should. This is partly from previous lifting and part genetics. In any case I'd like to correct it and get a more proportioned upper body.

There's a few exercises in particular that aren't targetting what they should.

1. Fly's - They're supposed to hit my pecs, but I feel most of the strain (and later soreness) in my anterior deltoids and clavicle pec, and not much at all in my sternal pec. This is not good, as those areas are already visibly more devolped than my sternal pec. (My pecs are starting to bulge outwards because the middle is so much weaker)

2. Row's - This is almost the same deal but from the backside. My posterior deltoid does most of the work and my lats barely feel it all.

Does anyone have suggestions for those exercises or a workout to really target my torso?

Ryan A
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Post by Ryan A » Tue Oct 31, 2006 7:31 pm

Can you do pullups? Try using more weight. I would say it is next to impossible to lift heavy weight with your arms only. Eventually your back will start doing its thing. With a dumbbell, you should be easily rowing more than double what you doing for bicep curls, even if your back is lagging. Put the exercises you need work on first.

For chest, I think there are better exercises than flys, like... db presses and barbell presses with pauses on the chest.

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Post by PharmBoy84 » Thu Nov 02, 2006 10:43 pm

How long ago did you start back up with these exercises? I know I've felt the same way with some exercises in the first few weeks I start a workout. Basically your nervous system doesn't know how to recruit your muscles correctly when you haven't worked them out for a long time, so it just kinda uses whatever muscles it likes to use best (in your case, your arms). It's a pain too because you'll do an exercise and it'll be hard to do, but you won't feel like you got a good workout.

Eventually, though, your nervous system learns better motor recruitment, and it will start using the correct muscles and you'll be able to feel like you're doing the exercise correctly. Just make sure you stick to the proper movement during the exercises and after a few weeks your body will figure out what it needs to be doing.

If you've already been doing those exercises for the past month or more, then I'm probably off the mark and maybe you just need to try some other exercises. Decline bench press targets your sternal portion better, I think... also I really like the close-grip pulldown for targetting the lats, although I should probably do the wide-grip to target a larger variety of muscle fibers.

Hope that helps.

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