T Nation

Tennis Elbow Help!

Any of you ever had the displeasure of having tennis elbow? I currently have it in my left elbow. I was told that I should work through the injury simply by doing a lot of warm up. Any suggestions from you who have had it recently.

Now this pain usually only occurs during curling movements. can still bench and do shoulder and tri work. So I have been doing very light very strict bi curls, seems to help a little.

Probably shouldn’t work through it.

But if you are like 99% of gym goers you will.

Problem I see if over time you have keep restricting what you do as it gets worse.

If you haven’t had the injury before seek help.

Ice it, and other recovery modes, it will get better over time.

I have it right now, and it’s getting a little better. I had to see my doctor about something else and asked about this while I was there- he said to use anti-inflammatories like advil. I asked if that didn’t just mask the pain and he said kind of, but the pain comes from the inflammation, so the medicine controls that. He also said to ice the area several times a day and that it would be fine to work through it. If you don’t want to work through it, it could take several weeks to heal, then flare up again when workouts start.

Mine is better to the point it only hurts when lifting, as opposed to picking up a gallon of milk, etc. I take advil a little before my workout instead of daily now.

Hope this helps.

Provided that you have an accurate diagnosis, I would seek the help of a physical therapist to determine whether it’s a tendon issue or a malposition of the radial head. Depending on how long you’ve had this problem, it may not be a problem of inflammation, rather a problem of improper and incomplete healing of the tendon.

If it’s a pretty recent injury, NSAIDs may help, but there has been studies showing interference of proper healing with the use of NSAIDs. Treatment options: friction massage, Scraping (Gua Sha, Graston technique, ASTYM), eccentric strengthening, PRRT, joint mobes, Kinesiotaping. An elbow strap may help also to disperse the forces pulling at the lateral elbow. Hope this helps.

You probably have “tendonosis,” meaning degradation of the tendon, which is commonly misdiagnosed as “tendonitis,” meaning inflammation of the tendon.

The therapies used for tendonitis don’t do much for tendonosis.

I had great success with an Active Release Technique (ART) practitioner who cleared up a case of tendonosis in the elbow that had been hampering me for several months. Two sessions was all it took.

Do some reading on tendonosis, and if that sounds like your injury, I would highly recommend giving ART a shot.

Good luck.

[quote]DMA wrote:
Probably shouldn’t work through it.

But if you are like 99% of gym goers you will.

Problem I see if over time you have keep restricting what you do as it gets worse.

If you haven’t had the injury before seek help.

Ice it, and other recovery modes, it will get better over time.

[/quote]

Like he said, don’t work through it. I don’t think you need to rush to any professional, but it depends on the severity. If you have trouble picking up a 5lb. weight, then it is probably time to see someone. In my opinion, physical therapists know the most about injuries as opposed to regular doctors, but you usually have to get a referral to go to them.

Whatever you do, just stay away from things that aggravate it. I know it is hard to not work through something, but it is better in the long run.

Call me insane, but I think that rubber band finger extensions work. A teacher of mine that plays softball does them just to prevent elbow problems. It may not help your elbow with as bas a it has gotten, but It could potentially keep them healthy, once you get it fixed.

I started getting this pain in my elbow after implementing declince skull crushers into my tricep workouts. I think I was using much to heavy weights for something new to me. I will not do lifts that are not part of my everyday movements. I never lift things like that behind/over my head.

The pain comes and goes. I really only feel it when I make a curling motion, it also hurts when I sleep, maybe I lay on it wrong. But if I do strict curl (palms up) I dont feel the pain as much.

I do ice the area a lot, and it does help. Thanks a lot guys!!

I had tennis elbow really bad for a while, I started to just work through it but it got worse. I stopped lifting for a period of months and when I went back to it, it sprang up again. I rested a couple of more months and when I went back to lifting I did the ice thing every night. Now I lift with less weight but still hard and it seems to be ok. You might want to have a chiropractor(?) check it out…maybe just readjusting your tendons would help.

Whatever you do, don’t use corticosteroid injections.

See this study: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/09/060929093850.htm

[quote]m90benaiah wrote:
I had tennis elbow really bad for a while, I started to just work through it but it got worse. I stopped lifting for a period of months and when I went back to it, it sprang up again. I rested a couple of more months and when I went back to lifting I did the ice thing every night. Now I lift with less weight but still hard and it seems to be ok. You might want to have a chiropractor(?) check it out…maybe just readjusting your tendons would help.[/quote]

Tendons can be readjusted?

Maybe readjusted is the wrong word, I don’t know if they can or can’t. A chiroproactor friend of mind worked on my elbow and no she didn’t crack it around but she applied pressure at various points and stretched my tendons pushing them back and forth. I don’t know the technical name for this which is why I’m so terribly trying to explain it…

[quote]m90benaiah wrote:
Maybe readjusted is the wrong word, I don’t know if they can or can’t. A chiroproactor friend of mind worked on my elbow and no she didn’t crack it around but she applied pressure at various points and stretched my tendons pushing them back and forth. I don’t know the technical name for this which is why I’m so terribly trying to explain it…[/quote]

That makes some sense. Maybe a sort of a “massage therapy” to try to get the inflammation down.

I’ve been suffering for well over a year now with tendonosis which is tennis elbow. I’ve worked through it for 1 year & now messed my ulnar nerve up. The doctor said I was over compensating with the inner elbow to relief the pain on outter side of my elbow.

I’ve tried ice creams for tennis elbow & have had 5 injections over the last year an a half & the injections are the only thing that takes the pain away but the pain comes right back when I start working out. The pain is that bad it hurts when I lift a mug up. I was told surgery is the only thing that will fix the ulnar nerve from being pinched & stop the tendonosis. Is there anyone here that has a suggestion other than surgery?

Another injury I was wondering if any of you had or heard of is:

While doing flies about 3 years ago I was doing fairly light weight but strict & wide. I felt an electrical pain in between my bicep & tricep & since then I haven’t been able to do flies again because since that day the pain is no longer electric shock. The pain is now still between my bicep & tricep but has moved up closer to my armpit & goes in to my chest & is a sharp pain (the sharp pain is only in between my bicep & tricep & can feel pulling in chest) & I can feel something like a tendon moving or clicking in between the bicep & tricep close to my armpit (like 2" to 3" down from my armpit) when I try & do light weight with flies.

I had 2 MRI’s on my shoulder & neck but nothing showed up. In the picture attached is where I’m talking about. & the pain only hurts while doing the fly motion.

If there’s one thing I could talk people into, it would be getting a diagnosis when they have an injury and doing whatever they have to correct the problem, rather than working around it or working through it. I’ve had friend that were working around an elbow problem (tendonitis), only to make a lift and tear one of their bicep tendons.

Of course that advice is based upon having made the mistake of working around an injury. I went to press a weight that was well within my ability to handle and tore a rotator cuff muscle. I had it surgically repaired. The other shoulder I was having problems with, I was able to get ART (Active Release Technique) on and break up the adhesions and restore more nearly full ROM.

Whenever there is a muscular imbalance, one muscle is tight, and the other is weak. Correcting a muscular imbalance involves stretching the tight muscle and strengthening the weak one.

Even if you have insurance, surgery is an expensive proposition. There’s always the things/procedures/$$$s paid that the insurance company isn’t willing to pay for. There’s the time off of work. There’s the time you have to take off from going to the gym … not to mention the pain and inconvenience.

Ajax’s advice re the ART is excellent! Getting ART done to correct my structural problems/issues was a life-altering experience for me and corrected a bad shoulder, elbow and neck. Turns out they were all connected … literally and figuratively. If you’d like to find out more about ART, do a search here on the site. I wrote about my experiences in a thread called ART Case Study.

Best of luck to you, Kal-El & Butcher69!!!

See a doctor and make sure you know what you have. If you really have tennis elbow my doctor gave me a wrap to wear BELOW the elbow. The theory is the wrap will push on the tendon, keeping it away from the bone and allow the inflamation to heal.

I wore one pretty much all the time I was awake for a couple of months, then wore on while lifting for a couple of years. Now I don’t need it at all. Another thing I believed helped, I do any bicep work with dumbbells, this allows the arm to move in what I believe to be a more natural motion (I think using a preacher bench messed it up originally). Good luck.

Hi guys thanks for the info! I’m glad I checked this post because 2 weeks from today I’m going to have surgery for my elbow & I would like to ask about the ART 1st.

It flared up for no real reason again I was doing ok then fri. bang can’t straighten my arm out. But this time the pains in a different spot & it doesn’t hurt while resisting pushing me wrist down but hurts unbelievable when pushing up.