Stopped lifting in high school because my trapezius would get very tight after lifting and stay that way for hours or days. It never went away, meaning even now 20 years later I have normal range of motion and no tightness in daily life, but if I do anything targeting the shoulder, even shrugs or arm circles with zero weight, I get the tightness. Never pain, just tightness that is pronounced enough that I get fearful of injury and stop.
I want to say that I think it's great that you know your body very well. So many people exercise and live their daily lives without really trying to get a sense of what their body is capable of, or how it is really working (or not working), in relation to what they do. I think that the most important thing to do is have a professional diagnosis. A good place to start would be a physical therapist. If, by some chance, your questions are not being answered; then I would seek out a qualified chiropractor. I have used one in the past, and have had wonderful results with a situation that is very closely related to yours.I would normally tell someone in your position to look at the workout first, but I truly believe in your case that it isn't primarily muscular. It sounds to me like their is some mis-alignment in your spine. When this happens the muscles get "gridlocked". This is a reaction to the original issue. Another thing to remember is; that if you do seek treatment you may still have minor issues that are always going to be there. In my case, I had pinched a nerve between my seventh cervical and first thoracic vertebrae respectively. This caused a problem with range of motion, and still gives me "fits" almost seven years after the fact. It is something I live with, but always try to be mindful of. I hope this helps. Definitely, the first step is to seek a diagnosis from a therapist or chiropractor. Thanks. I hope that everything works out for you!
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