I did a series of push-ups recently for a fitness test that the academy I'm in requires. Well, I pushed it, no pun intended, and on the last push-up....I felt this extreme pain when the back and base of my head meets the beginning of the neck. To be specific, it's in the left hemisphere. It was very debilitating and felt like an extremely bad headache. That is...I felt a lot of pain with each pump of blood my heart delivered....like a "pulse" headache. Even laying completely flat...the headache didn't go away. Not to be an alarmist...but I thought perhaps I ruptured some vein or something. My fellow academy friends were telling me to breathe (I was holding my breath and exerting as much force as I could on that last push-up). I know that holding one's breath and exerting force heightens blood pressure...which made me all the more concerned that my headache was the result of something rupturing. I was able to do a run a little bit later...but it has been three days since the physical tests we were administered and I still get recurring pain in the same area. Sometimes, I'll get it if I get up too fast. Or if I'm sitting in a chair and have a good stretch....the pain all of a sudden comes out of nowhere sharply as soon as I exhale. It's the same sort of pulsing acute headache pain that I felt in the left hemisphere as when I pushed it on the push-ups. I am concerned, but haven't seen a doctor yet. I would really appreciate any feedback. Thank you.
Hey spandro, I just got the same thing doing pushups tonight. I think it mqy be associatrwd with bad form - or looking forward instead of straight down when doing a push up. It very well could have sprained a muscle at the base of your skull. How do you feel now? Did it take some time to heal? Any tips?
yo just today the same thing started, i do look straight forward and i dont think it is due to bad form cause i give good attention to form so i dont cheat myself in my workout but yah it pretty much like he said but mine was more central compared to his left, i did a total of 132 than got it, only habbit i know that might contribute to this is that i do crack my neck from time to time and decided not to do that this time so if you two do the same (cracking neck) maybe we've weakened something. oh and i was breathing heavly when it happened and still feel it
WOW. I have had EXACTLY the same issue over the last 6 months. This is the only relevant thing i have found on the internet. background: I do push ups and bodyweight ex every day more or less, including some of the more challenging hand positions (for push ups). I also run 4 times a week (maybe 10k a week total)
First episode occured in push up position - i was pushing it - last couple of push ups when fatigued. blood pressure was def up. (i have normal blood pressure at rest) onset and initial severity of the pain was instant in the side of my head (approx 1 inch above my ear, pain seemed to start at back of the neck and shoot up. Residual headache and then repeat smaller episodes just when blood pressure was raised over the next few days.
I was admitted to hospital as i thought I too had ruptured something, In hospital I had a CT scan, MRI, and lumber puncture (which was aggrevated - v unpleasant) all tests came back clear. Follow up with neurologist 3 months later. he was not concerned about any possible internal bleeding. referred to a pain physio. had a few sessions of acupuncture but in fact this triggered another less severe occurance (this time on the other side of my head, similar place) I occasionally get lesser pain in the same area for little reason now.
I also 'crack' my neck too much but was not sure if this is connected to the issue. it may well be. anyway, at my last physio appointment she suggested that my push up form may be bad. what!! i thought. BUT i think this may be significant. she said how your shoulder blades need to be flush with your back (you should not be able to get a finger under your shoulder blade during a push up) she advised i need to go back to doing stand up push ups. also i think i need more core work. if your back is arched, when muscles are tired, other muscles come into play which may cause spasms. im taking her advice with the standing push ups and doing more pull ups and core strength work.
its been hard not knowing what may be going on as its an alarming pain in an alarming place. finding this thread has cheered me up that this is in fact to do with my push ups and my neck cracking.
Just now had something very similar except no headache. Severe pain around base of neck to lower neck extending into shoulder area. This happened suddenly and was only on my tenth push up. Was not in bad form, my girlfriend keeps an eye on my form & is great at quickly correcting me. Also, it hurts to turn my head left or right.
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