I just recently started getting quite a bit of pain in my right shoulder when performing dips. It's not so intense that I have to take a break from all movements, but certainly overhead presses or snatches can't feature in my routine for a few days after as a result.
Do you think it's likely to be a form issue? I only do the movement unweighted, so its not like I'm 'cheating' to push back up, and experience no pain whatsoever in my left shoulder.
Any input would be appreciated.
I too have experienced this recently. In my own case, it was due to me experimenting with different styles of dips, as opposed to the style I had always done.
Here is what I think:
Quick tip for dipping: do not dip with the shoulders "hunched forwards". You are putting your shoulders in a position which increases probability of injury if you are doing so. (Connectedly, I fundamentally disagree with the concept of "hunched forwards dips for greater chest emphasis". Some call these "chest dips". I have found them injurious, and would not recommend them. Kudos to those who can do them without injury -- I certainly do not belong to that small group of people.)
Instead, try this: contract the lats, upper back, and shoulders very tight. In terms of mental cues, keep the shoulders "contracted + down-and-back".
Here are some cues for "shoulder-pain free" (or, at least, "lowered shoulder pain") dipping.
* Climb up to dipping position.
* Place hands on bars.
* Inhale and tighten the body.
* Grip the bars tight and straighten the arms.
* Let legs hang straight -- in fact, press the legs perfectly together, similarly to a gymnast. By this point, my guess is that you will be surprised at how stable you are.
* Lock-out *upwards* first of all. This might seem strange to you, but try it. Press the shoulders "down and away" from the ears (a Pavel cue) by tensing the lats and pecs *very* tight.
* *Then*, lower yourself *under control*, keeping the legs straight and together.
* Get to *your natural* bottom position, and *do not go further*. Stop at that position for a short moment (i.e., there will be no "pre-stretch" or "bounce" out of the dip under this way of doing dips).
* Press-out, back up to the top again, exhaling under control (think "tsssss"). Again, be sure to contract the shoulders "down and away from the ears" via tensing the lats and pecs *very* tightly. At the top, you should be fully exhaled, but still tight, and ready to inhale and repeat.
The aim is for "perfect reps" -- to build basic strength throughout the movement -- before ending the set, perhaps a rep before muscular failure. The aim is *not* racking up numbers of reps at the expense of "perfect reps". (In sticking to this aim, the chances are that your rep numbers will decrease, if you are counting them.) Needless to say, the above cues mean that you are *not* doing explosive dipping, which lots of people, in my experience, cannot do without "cranking-up their shoulders" sooner or later, via as little as a second or two of unmindfulness/lack of concentration on each set. Over time, that can become a big problem.
If you still cannot do the dips without pain inside the shoulder, I'd bin them and focus on shoulder stability work. At the very least, focus on movements that are known to enhance shoulder stability instead of the movements -- and the means of performing them -- that have taken you to this point.
In addition, investigate shoulder prehab and rehab. Some of the best sources I have seen on that are youtube videos from Diesel Crew, "Slizzardman" and Ido Portal. Links to these are in the link posted by username FeelGood (above).
Just my opinion of course.