Tennis elbow – or lateral epicondylalgia – is inflammation of the tendon which connects the forearms muscles to the elbow. Although it is called ‘Tennis Elbow’ you don’t have to have played the sport to get it. It is usually associated with highly repetitive activities that require a lot of gripping, or wrist and hand movements.
Pain is the most common symptom that people experience, however you may experience a loss of grip strength, reduced ability to lift heavier objects, tingling or pins and needles in the forearm and hand in more extreme cases, and loss of fine motor control movements.
The above symptoms mean that tennis elbow can really start to affect your ability to perform activities of daily living and work-related tasks.
Although it is usually self-limiting – that means that it will eventually go away – it can occasionally last for weeks and even months before settling unless an intervention is made.
Some of the things that your therapist may suggest to help your symptoms include:
Forearm stretches help to reduce some of the tension in the muscles which develops as we use them for everyday activity. Increased tension in the muscles puts added stress where the muscles connects to the bone, thus causing your symptoms.
2 Eccentric forearm exs
Eccentric exercises help to strengthen the connective tissues in our bodies, which is the main tissue affected in tennis elbow.
3 Wrist Pronation/Supination
We use our hands to do movements in all different directions, that’s why it’s important to strengthen our wrist and forearms the same way. The pronation/supination movement helps to mimic some of the different ways we use our hand everyday
Give these exercises a try and see how they can improve your elbow pain!
by Matthew Calabrese
Activ Therapy Clemton Park
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