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Unread 11-09-2012, 06:36 PM   #1
cybernova
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Toning arms+weak joints=Death and Destruction?

I have long been more or less determined to say goodbye to my girly arms. I happen to be a female, but I'd still like to be in possession of some arm musculature. I'm a slim 19-year-old (underweight to be exact, I'm trying to put up weight and muscle), not in a bad shape, but I don't have much visible muscle except for some strong legs.

My main problem are my creaky, weak joints. I have doublejointed arms and my clavicles pop at the front if I pull my arms too far back or front and up, so it's never been too easy for me to train my arms without some ungodly sounds. I'm also fairly impatient, so I've never quite gotten to strenghtening my arm joints effectively (I'm bad at starting easy).

Now, I'm finally hoping to get serious with training, and my first goal is to strenghten my arms enough so I can start more intensive training. I tested this workout today just because Youtube recommended it, and found out that I do not lack strength to do the recommended three sets (admittedly, I did it equipment-free since I hadn't any dumbbells at hand). However, my right elbow gets awfully loud with some of the exercises. It doesn't hurt, but I had to safety-pin a sock around my arm for DIY support and turn up the music to drown out the sound which was not too pretty. My wrists tend to get creaky too, which is why I've never been able to take up any routine with push-ups, as my wrists snap and creak and sound like they're going to come off.

Is it still safe for me to take up a arm routine? My school nurse said back in 2011 that I'd just have to strenghten those joints before more serious exercise, so it's not like anything's likely to self-destruct. Can you recommend some good and safe exercises for strenghtening doublejointed elbows and weak wrists? I'd also like to tone my whole upper body and arms, can you recommend a routine?

Here's hoping I can make sense at way-too-late a.m. Thanks in advance!
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Unread 11-10-2012, 03:17 AM   #2
Arti
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cybernova View Post
I have long been more or less determined to say goodbye to my girly arms. I happen to be a female, but I'd still like to be in possession of some arm musculature. I'm a slim 19-year-old (underweight to be exact, I'm trying to put up weight and muscle), not in a bad shape, but I don't have much visible muscle except for some strong legs.

My main problem are my creaky, weak joints. I have doublejointed arms and my clavicles pop at the front if I pull my arms too far back or front and up, so it's never been too easy for me to train my arms without some ungodly sounds. I'm also fairly impatient, so I've never quite gotten to strenghtening my arm joints effectively (I'm bad at starting easy).

Now, I'm finally hoping to get serious with training, and my first goal is to strenghten my arms enough so I can start more intensive training. I tested this workout today just because Youtube recommended it, and found out that I do not lack strength to do the recommended three sets (admittedly, I did it equipment-free since I hadn't any dumbbells at hand). However, my right elbow gets awfully loud with some of the exercises. It doesn't hurt, but I had to safety-pin a sock around my arm for DIY support and turn up the music to drown out the sound which was not too pretty. My wrists tend to get creaky too, which is why I've never been able to take up any routine with push-ups, as my wrists snap and creak and sound like they're going to come off.

Is it still safe for me to take up a arm routine? My school nurse said back in 2011 that I'd just have to strenghten those joints before more serious exercise, so it's not like anything's likely to self-destruct. Can you recommend some good and safe exercises for strenghtening doublejointed elbows and weak wrists? I'd also like to tone my whole upper body and arms, can you recommend a routine?

Here's hoping I can make sense at way-too-late a.m. Thanks in advance!
I was about to make a long post about practicing Yoga, but I found a simpler solution: Sports.

I think the best way to tone your arms is to actually not think about it at all, but instead be more active in general. You may be suffering joint problems not because that your muscles are weak, but your Central Nervous System is weak too utilize your muscles effectively. Then once the CNS gets better, then it may be better to use resistance training to progress.

Also, I do like to know what your daily food intake is on a typical day so I get to fell an idea of your lifestyle.
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Unread 11-11-2012, 12:26 PM   #3
Em1nAI
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Yes it is okay to exercise with weak joints. Stronger muscles will stabilize your joints better.

Now to fight the creaking and joint weakness. I think you are headed in the right direction with the sock around your elbow, except get an actual fitted elbow sleeve. Something like this... http://www.dickssportinggoods.com/pr...137921.4414069 A fitted elbow sleeve will provide compression and retain heat around your elbows, which promotes circulation as well. Same for wrist, some kind of fitted wrist sleeve ... http://www.dickssportinggoods.com/pr...uctId=13270722
And yes...Crank up that music!! I have ear buds that wrap around my ear and block out the horrible music at my gym and I can hang upside down and they won't fall off.

As far as exercises, because of your double jointed (official term is hypermobility) you want to do isometric or concentric exercises. Isometric means you stabilize the joint, that is you keep your elbow and/or wrist in one position the whole time. Concentric is exercises when the muscle shortens, like a bicep curl. Or think of it as any exercise where you lift something towards your body or push upward. With the fitted sleeves I mention and the music, I think you will lessen the creaking, that will happen, but these exercises are okay to do with your hypermobility.

It seems like you are doing home workouts, so some suggestions for arms/shoulder isometric exercises are the top four on this site I think would be really good for you http://www.isometric-training.com/ar...sometrics.html (You decide if that fifth one "cross arm stretch" is something you want to do, because of the thing with your clavicles)

Some concentric focused exercises are any sort of bicep curl and for triceps kickbacks and pushdowns. But if the elbow/wrist sleeve and music silences the noise enough, you might be able to go back to the exercises you've been avoiding.

I hope this helps.

~Em1nAI
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Last edited by Em1nAI : 11-11-2012 at 12:29 PM.
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Unread 11-12-2012, 07:12 AM   #4
Libis
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I have double-jointed elbows, and hips and shoulders that like to pop out of joint. I have found over time that it is best to keep the shoulders slid down the back (like if you let them hunch up you're more likely to pop them out) and keep the arms very slightly bent in the natural direction to prevent the joint from weakening. (In other words, this keeps the joint a little stronger while you work out than it would be if fully extended.)
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Unread 11-13-2012, 10:39 AM   #5
cybernova
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Thanks for the input everyone, much appreciated. I have added a elbow and wrist brace to my shopping list, so I'll be able to start training once I get my pay.
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Unread 11-15-2012, 01:14 AM   #6
Peaseblossum
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Swimming is a great thing to do if you want to tone you arm muscles more, It also gives strength to basically your whole body as all muslces are need. I also get very bored and impatient so I can understand your problem, sports are an awesome Idea and it's better if you have a friend or family member training/playing beside you. Trust me this will keep you interested because you'll feel it isn't as much as a work out but more of a hang out time with friends/family. Also as other people have stated elbow and wrist brace very good Idea.

Hope that helps
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