Tennis Elbow… You Don’t Have To Be John McEnroe to Get it…

Robbie Adams June 5th 2018

tennis Elbow Pain

Tennis Elbow

Is a classic repetitive strain injury: a combination of chronic exhaustion and irritation in the muscles and tendons on the back of the arm and the outside of the elbow, which extend the wrist and fingers. Hotter, sharper pain right at the elbow probably indicates a classic case dominated by tendon trouble. Duller, more aching pain, spread more evenly around the back of the arm.

Tennis Elbow

This condition earned its name because trying to hit tennis balls around like Martina Navratilova at the French Open was the original main cause, but these days it is much more commonly caused by computer usage. Heavy computer users outnumber serious tennis players at least a thousand to one.

Today, this condition would be better called “computer elbow”, however that term lacks that certain ‘appeal’ and athletic notoriety as “Tennis Elbow”. It’s hard to visualize Ilie Năstase holding his elbow in pain, chanting: “I have some serious COMPUTER ELBOW!”


You may have also heard of “golfer’s elbow,” which is exactly the same thing except that it affects the muscles and tendons that flex the wrist instead of extending it (on the inside of the elbow, instead of the outside). Computer users do not usually get this kind of elbow pain: golfers are still the most afflicted on that side of the elbow. Nevertheless, the conditions are extremely similar despite occurring on different sides of the elbow.

Golfer elbow

How Do I Know I’ve Got Tennis Elbow?

Instead of thinking of tennis elbow as a tendinitis, you should think of it as a “tendinopathy” which is Latin for “something wrong with a tendon.”

The majority of elbow pain without any other obvious explanation is either tennis or golfer’s elbow, especially if you’ve been working at the computer a lot (or playing a lot of tennis or golf). Tissues right around and below the bony projection on the side of your elbow will be tender. The muscles on the back of the arm, if you dig into them, will also be tender; very sore indeed. If a large percentage of heavy computer users are prone to developing tennis elbow, imagine the amount of times Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and John Carmack were struck with this ailment? Breakout, DOOM and Donkey.BAS could be to blame….

Xray Tennis Elbow

What Can I Do About Tennis Elbow?

There are plenty of non-surgical treatments for tennis elbow that individuals with this aliment can try. Always consult a healthcare professional or your family doctor about different treatment options as treatments and solutions will vary from patient to patient.


Rest:  Rest is your first line of defense against this condition. People find it persistent mainly because they don’t take the problem seriously enough and continue to participate in the activity that has caused this condition. Healthcare professionals have stated, taking as little as a week of resting the arm as much as possible is often enough to make a significant difference. Rest, Ice, Compression & Elevation (RICE): Try icing the elbow and forearm for 15 to 20 minutes at a time, several times per day. Compression and elevation also help keep inflammation from getting worse.

rest after workout

Exercise: Resting is vital and crucial for healing, however a careful balance of rest and a variety of exercise is the basic formula for recovery from most repetitive stress injuries. Nothing in biology seems to recover without a little stimulation you just have to beware of overdoing it. Gradually and progressively train the flexor muscles and tendons to tolerate exercise again.


Eccentric Wrist Exercise: Rest your forearm down on a table with your wrist hanging off the edge, palm up. Hold a very light weight (5 pounds or less) in your hand.

Forearm Extensor Stretch: Keep your affected wrist bent in front of you. With your unaffected hand, reach over and grab the fingers of your affected hand, then pull them back to stretch the forearm

Tricep Stretch

Tricep Stretch: Bend your affected arm behind your back and put light pressure on the elbow using your good arm.

Tennis Ball hand-Strengthener: Hold a tennis ball (or similar ball) in your hand. Practice gripping and squeezing.

Grip Strength with tennis ball

Acupuncture: is a holistic health technique that stems from traditional Chinese medicine. It helps reduce pain by stimulating specific points on the body through the insertion of very thin, practically-painless needles. Studies show that compared to control groups, patients receiving acupuncture treatments report less pain.

acupuncture elbow

Maintain a Healthy Diet:  Studies have demonstrated that you can decrease inflammation by avoiding processed foods including: added sugar, high-sodium foods (which increase water retention), foods high in saturated and refined fats, alcohol and processed grains. A proper balanced and healthy diet can aid in the process of natural healing.

Healthy Diet

Cold Laser Therapy:

BioFlex Laser Therapy (a form of Low Level Laser Therapy [LLLT], also referred to as ‘Cold Laser Therapy’ or ‘Phototherapy’) is clinically proven to assist in the treatment of many conditions, including common musculoskeletal disorders (e.g. osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia). Laser therapy for pain and inflammation reduction is proven to be highly effective in numerous case studies and medical journals.

Non-invasive, safe and drug-free, BioFlex Laser Therapy reduces inflammation and relieves pain associated with arthritis, and treats many musculoskeletal conditions by promoting healing at the cellular level.

Laser on Target

*Low Level Laser Treatment for Tennis Elbow – Clinical Evidence

*The effectiveness of low level laser in conjunction with stretching was investigated in a 2007 study. Results indicated cold laser plus stretching was more effective than placebo laser plus stretching in patients with lateral epicondylitis. A study of the effectiveness of LLLT on the management of lateral epicondylitis indicated that LLLT in addition to exercise is effective in relieving pain, and in improving grip strength and physical function.

*Lateral epicondylitis sufferers experienced better pain reduction as a result of laser therapy than they did with bracing in addition to increased grip strength with LLLT in a 2007 study.

Clinical Research

Game. Set. Match… Tennis Elbow does not have to sideline you this summer! Jimmy Connors would approve…






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