Elbow Pain - Tennis Elbow and Golfer's Elbow

What is Tennis Elbow?

This is a condition caused by the chronic inflammation of the tendons (link between muscles and bone) of the fore-arm. These tendons attach around the elbow and causes elbow pain and pain down the arm.

How does Tennis Elbow occur?

Tennis elbow occurs with any repetitive gripping activity, often involving gripping using the thumb and first two fingers.  This develops over time when the tendons have been strained repetitively and develop micro tears. The scar tissue that builds up because of these repetitive injuries can even pinch on the nerve that passes close by that area of the elbow.

Symptoms of tennis elbow:

This condition causes pain over the bony area on the outside of the elbow. A similar condition is called golfer’s elbow, which causes pain over the bony area on the inside of the elbow. This pain can refer to the upper or fore-arm. It will be most painful when:

- Gripping something

- Shaking hands

- Picking up something heavy

- Straightening your arm

How can physiotherapy help?

After doing a full assessment and “tennis elbow” is indeed diagnosed, your therapist can help in the following ways:

- Pain control and reduction of inflammation

- Mobilisation of the muscles and connective tissue around the elbow

- Mobilisation of the nerve if it is impinged

- Mobilisation of the elbow joint

- Muscle and neural stretches

- Strengthening and stretching of the appropriate muscles 

- Advice and education on how to manage the condition and how to prevent it re-occurring