Have you ever been told that your tennis elbow is going to last for a while and there isn’t much you can do? Have you been to your doctor who has told you to rest/ice and “wait it out?” I know how frustrating this can be! I’m here to offer somewhat of a solution to help you combat that lingering tennis elbow.
First & foremost, I want you to know – you will not be stuck this way! Tasks as simple as picking up your children or grandchildren, opening doors, carrying bags, do not have to be overly daunting any longer.
Before we dive into the scientific component of this article, I would just like to say that self-education is the best path to embark on to help abolish the fear of not being able to return to do something you love. It is great that you have elected to read this article as a starting point to get back to living pain-free.
Before we go any further, note – tennis elbow does not solely occur from playing tennis! It can be caused by many different types of routine daily activities.
OK – so now we can get started on the major topic.
What exactly is tennis elbow anyway?
Tennis elbow is traditionally described as pain on the outside of the elbow joint. To be specific, tennis elbow is pain at the lateral epicondyle.
This is the area where the muscles that extend the wrist originate. There are multiple muscles that originate here and there can be specific muscles affected, however for the purpose of this educational post we will not get into that. If you would like further information on this topic, please feel free to contact us directly.
What are some causes?
Tennis elbow can happen traumatically, or it can happen over time. The more traumatic cases of tennis elbow actually occur during tennis. This is secondary to quick movements that cause microtears of the tendons on the arm. If this does occur, the pain will be felt immediately after the incident and will cause weakness of grip, hand motion, and tenderness along the outside of the elbow. Tennis elbow that happens over time (or chronic tennis elbow) can occur secondary to tasks such as lifting, carrying heavy loads, gardening, or housework. This continuous strain on the tendon will eventually cause micro tears resulting in major pain for the individual affected.
How can you start getting better today?
There are few things to know before we give you some pointers on healing your elbow. First, there is no 100% cookie cutter approach to healing. Each individual is different, therefore each treatment may be different. Second, the advice given here is a generalization – so please proceed with caution. If you have a highly irritable tendon, I would advise seeking medical assistance before implementing these exercises.
1. If there is a high level of pain, icing is a great tool to diminish the pain receptors. Ice numbs the area affected and alleviates the overall uncomfortable feeling.
2. Start lightly stretching the area.
3. Isometric load the area to start the strengthening process.
Setup: Begin with your palm facing down and fingers straight with your opposite hand gently over your other hand.
Movement: Try to bend your wrist upward but resist the movement with your upper hand.
Tip: There should be no movement with this exercise.
Thank you for reading this article. Again, as mentioned above, this advice is offered solely as suggestions rather than treatment. Please note that if you require further assistance, reach out to us NOW at (914) 488-5763.
Lastly, please do not look at tennis elbow as an end-all-be-all. There are ways to adjust your daily life while starting to regain your strength and function. There is always hope when it comes to your body!!! If you want relief now from your symptoms and want to get back to doing what you love please reach out to us now for some assistance; (914) 488-5763. We are now servicing the greater Westchester NY area, including, Briarcliff manor, Chappaqua, mount Kisco, Tarrytown, Irvington and Pleasantville.
Board-Certified Orthopedic Specialist
Joseph received his Doctorate in Physical Therapy from New York Medical College and is also recognized as a Board-Certified Orthopedic Specialist. As a former competitive athlete and weightlifter, Joseph understands the specific needs and demands of the human body. Joseph’s goal is to maintain an active approach to rehab while facilitating recovery..