'Kettlebell forearm' Pavel?

Discussion in 'Old StrongFirst Forum (Read-Only)' started by Journeyman, Feb 23, 2014.

  1. Journeyman

    Journeyman More than 500 posts

    Someone at a GS meet recently posted this picture of Anton Anasenko's forearm:


    I shared it to the strongfirst instructors group remarking that I had something similar (much, much smaller)--and I thought it was normal, but no one, including Brett, has apparently seen anything like it.

    Some suggested it could be a form issue. I don't think so, it happens anytime I have bells sitting on my forearm (most recently, from some TGU and some light pressing, nothing else)--I've never really done high volume cleans or snatches. When I don't lift kbs for a while they go away.

    It's a hard lump, not filled with fluid from what I can tell. About the same density as a maximally flexed muscle. Seems like a hardening of the subcutaneous fat. An inch long and as thick as my thumb.

    I've been using kbs fairly regularly (off and on when I'm at university) for 5 years now (16-21). Never had much bruising even when I was learning, always this mainly.

    Anyone seen anything like this? Figured I'd see what the chief himself thinks, as he's seen more kbs lifted than anyone.
  2. Jason Paul

    Jason Paul More than 300 posts

    No, I've never seen anything like that.
  3. Ken Meyer

    Ken Meyer Double-Digit Post Count

    Looks like what we used to call "surfer's knots" they developed on the tops of the feet and just below the kneecaps from knee paddling a longboard.
  4. strongo

    strongo Double-Digit Post Count


    although your description sounds like you have a temporary flaring up during activities? I think it goes without saying, you should see a doctor...
  5. m@tty

    m@tty Double-Digit Post Count

    Looks like a ganglion Cyst to me they can feel quite hard. He should be able to get it drained or removed but in both cases it might come back.

    The old remedy was to give them a thump with the family bible and they were known as bible cysts.  I have a volar ganglion cyst which appears now and again and even though Im a medical professional and wouldn't recommend it to others my preferred treatment is to get drunk and have one of my mates smack it with a large book.

  6. Journeyman

    Journeyman More than 500 posts

    Pretty sure it's not a ganglion cyst. It's hard to the touch, and definitely not filled with fluid. It's not a temporary flare-up and it does not hurt. If I have a bell on my forearm regularly (right now it's just TGU and added some pressing back in last week--not like I'm banging bells into my arms) it comes back pretty quickly and stays for a while... never completely goes away. Kinda reminds me of the 'hickey' I got on my jaw when I played violin all the time, all though that looked more like a bruise.

    I don't think it requires a visit to the doctor--had it 5 years now with no pain or ill effects... though if no one has ever seen anything similar I'd be curious to have it examined just to know what's going on there.
  7. B.Hetzler

    B.Hetzler Triple-Digit Post Count

    My 2 cents - It's calcification.  When there is trauma (a heavy bell banging on the forearm is trauma) the body will respond.  After seeing that pic yesterday that was my first thought, hearing your description -hard and not painful - makes me think that even more. 

    At some point there were (are) technical issues - the bell banging on the forearm- to the point that I'm guessing there was tenderness or bruising.  There isn't a lot of soft tissue covering the bone there, so it is not unusual to actually bruise the bone or the periostium (outside of the bone).  Once this happens, bond only has one way to heal.  It treats the area like a fracture - goes thru the whole callus formation process.  If you repeaditly irritate the area while it is healing, it will continue to lay down a larger callus. 

    Long story short, you can end up with a very large hard callus in that area.

    Just my guess though
  8. Pavel

    Pavel Founder and Chairman Master Certified Instructor

    Aris, if I recall correctly, one could get a ganglion cyst from overstretching the joint.  This is why Olympic lifters often get them from the rack.  A "bump" on the site of the kettlebell might be a callus but I am not qualified to guess.  Ask your doc. 

  9. Journeyman

    Journeyman More than 500 posts

    Brandon--that's the most likely explanation I've heard. Especially because about the same time I got some calcified deposits in my chest that were (according to my doctor) pretty normal for some kids that age.

    Pavel--very interesting, I never heard of that happening to O-lifters before. This lump is a good inch or so down my forearm from the joint, though. I'll ask my doctor at my next checkup/physical and see what exactly is going on.

    Thanks for the feedback everyone!
  10. anima9

    anima9 First Timer

    I seem to have a pair of calcified forearm bumps like the pic above but they’ve only begun to form so they’re a lot smaller but big enough to be noticed (and felt).

    I’ve only been recently doing cleans and presses with a pair of 24′s (started cleans and presses last Dec) and my colleagues and I have noticed the said bumps.

    I actually knew it was a form of defense by the body but I just never knew the term.

    Now is this dangerous? Is this reversible? If I stop for a while (or decrease the reps or sets), will they shrink back?

    I mean, it’s like a callus so I’m sure it’s gonna make my forearm stronger but what if I suddenly increase the weight? I have a pair of 32′s and I’m not sure if I should use them for cleans and presses given that my forearms are already starting to calcify.

    Thank you for answering.
  11. rambodoc@gmail.com

    rambodoc@gmail.com Triple-Digit Post Count

    It would take long long years for calcification to develop as a degenerative change. I would vote on a bursa or hematoma. These things can get hard. Yes, cysts can feel hard.


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