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Tennis Elbow

Jeremy Barnes identifies seven ways to alleviate the condition experienced by many tennis players, Tennis Elbow.

Tennis elbow is one of the most irritating injuries that you can pick up as a tennis player. Caused by the repetitive gripping/swinging action it is an injury that generally develops over time. Initially, you may start to feel some tendon pain, then it disappears only for it to keep coming back in varying degrees of pain. It is a form of tendonitis that is incredibly difficult to get rid of.

Tennis elbow is commonly associated with tennis players, but it is an injury that many racquet sports players pick up and even people who do not play can be affected by it.

As with many injuries, the most effective cure is complete rest, but that is not always an option that people have, for example, if they have a manual job that requires lifting etc. Because the pain is not necessarily bad enough to stop people from playing tennis, a lot of players will play through the pain when they have tennis elbow.

Due to how often the elbow joint is used in everyday life, having tennis elbow can be more frustrating than other injuries, so a cure is definitely going to come in handy for many sufferers out there.

For a full guide to the prevention and treatment of tennis elbow head over to TRCentral but also here are some of the methods that are proven to help reduce the pain or help to cure it:

Ice

Whilst icing the injury is not likely to disappear with this type of treatment, it will certainly provide comfort and reduce the inflammation and should be repeated for a few minutes, several times throughout the day.

Rest

Whenever you have the chance to rest the area, you should. Try to avoid any activities or actions that feel like they are aggravating the injury. Try to use your other arm as much as possible when you are doing everyday movements where possible.

NSAIDs

(Non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs) – Ibuprofen and similar NSAIDs are also a very good way of reducing inflammation, both in the form of tablets and creams.

Physiotherapy

Massage and manipulation methods applied by qualified physiotherapists can help to relieve the injury. Strengthening of the forearm muscles through various exercises is another way of helping to get rid of the problem. Adding muscle will take some of the strain away from the tendon.

Support/strapping

Providing additional support to the tendon by wearing a brace or strapping helps the recovery phase as well. Many chemists sell supports that have been specifically designed to help tennis elbow and offer a range of different sizes. However, as soon as the issue starts to feel better, it is best to remove the strapping to prevent muscle waste from relying on the support.

Corticosteroid injections

When resting simply is not an option, an injection may be administered. Professional sports people will often use these to enable them to continue playing, particularly if there is an important match/event that they do not want to miss out on. The injection is a really effective way of reducing the pain, for a short period at least. Having this kind of treatment is not considered by medical professionals as a good way of getting rid of tennis elbow but more a means of getting through it without pain.

Surgery

In some really severe cases, usually after all other methods have been tried and failed, surgery may be recommended. This would only generally be the case if the person has been suffering a lot of pain and for a considerable amount of time with no signs of improvement. Surgery involves removing the part of the tendon that is damaged and is only really a last resort method of treatment. Read more info here on Medline Plus.

Conclusion

Tennis elbow can come and go and cause huge discomfort, so it is recommended that you consult a doctor or sports physiotherapist to see the best course of action to take. Sometimes it really is just rest that is going to help you to finally be cured of the problem and you would rather not have to be operated on, as there are also risks associated with that.


Page Reference

If you quote information from this page in your work, then the reference for this page is:

  • BARNES, J. (2018) Tennis Elbow [WWW] Available from: https://www.brianmac.co.uk/articles/article339.htm [Accessed

About the Author

Jeremy Barnes is a fitness enthusiast and keen tennis player and has been playing for the last 20 years. He runs the tennis blog TR Central where he writes tips and advice articles for tennis players from beginner to pro level.

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