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Tennis Elbow, what is it & how do i fix it?

posted Jan 19, 2017, 7:18 PM by Rebecca Smith
With the tennis season now in full swing, it’s quite fitting that this next blog is focused on the condition known as “tennis elbow”. Tennis elbow affects the outside portion of your elbow when the muscles that attach to the bone located in this region become overused, inflamed and/or go through some wear and tear. Contrary to common belief, tennis elbow is not just caused by playing tennis, but rather can be caused by anything that overuses these muscles, including but not limited to office work (e.g. typing), repetitive lifting and carrying, and even writing.

Your physio can usually diagnose tennis elbow from a thorough assessment, but can also be confirmed by having an ultrasound completed. Once diagnosed as tennis elbow, your physio will discuss with you possible causes of this, and will provide strategies to either perform the aggravating task differently or rest from it altogether until the pain subsides.

Initial treatment usually involves education, rest, ice pack (especially if inflammation is present), massage, joint mobilisations and taping. A brace may also be recommended especially if the taping has been effective. Dry needling, ultrasound therapy and shockwave therapy may also be provided.

Once some of the pain has subsided, an exercise program will be initiated to improve the strength of the affected muscles in order to help in further reducing the pain and prevent future reoccurrences. These exercises include stretches, lifting a small dumbbell up and down moving just your wrist, turning a stick around back and forth, grip squeezes, and upper arm strengthening. Your physio will individually prescribe these exercises to you to ensure that you are performing them correctly and are using a suitable weight.

With proper management, your tennis elbow pain will subside and allow you to return back to your everyday activities, whether it’s holding a coffee mug with no pain, being able to work in the office, or playing a full game of tennis.

If you have been suffering with tennis elbow, then book yourself an appointment with any of our team.


Physiotherapist Narellan
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