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Tennis elbow pain not just for athletes

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As the weather warms, you’re probably going to be working out, playing more sports, using those legs and especially arms even more than before.

But if your elbows start to ache from tennis, golf, lifting or swimming — or even from too much time as a desk jockey — remember that drugs won’t really let you get past the pain. And some can be even outright dangerous.

Tennis elbow (or in fancy medical terms, lateral epicondylosis) is a condition that usually results from overuse of the arm and forearm muscles. Symptoms can make the most basic tasks – shaking someone’s hand or brushing your teeth – very painful.

Many who suffer from tennis elbow choose to receive cortisone injections or take anti-inflammatory drugs. But the condition doesn’t always originate in the joint. So joint treatments often don’t work.

However, researchers in Sweden originally found that physical training and ergonomic treatment are more effective ways to heal from the common muscular disease, and they give you no side effects.

Scientists at the Sahlgrenska Academy conducted two separate studies, one with 78 patients over a four-month period, and the second with 297 patients. Both groups followed a structured training program that helped them build up strength in the elbow muscles. The patients also wore a simple night bandage, which prevented the elbow from bending during sleep.

Pia Nilsson, a physiotherapist and scientist at the Sahlgrenska Academy, said that these natural treatments typically produce better long-term results for tennis elbow than cortisone shots or anti-inflammatory drugs, which are designed for short-term relief.

There are many other treatments available, many of them non-surgical, but a review of studies on the subject revealed that none of them really work. The issue usually completely resolves itself in 12-18 months whether you do anything or not.

Today, we know of one specific “eccentric” movement that is proven to get rid of almost 80 percent of the pain.

All you need is a small rubber cylinder and a few seconds.

First, hold the cylinder in your right hand as if it were a long microphone. Then grab the top end with your other hand with the back of your hand to your face. Then simply twist both hands and extend your arms out in front of you as if you were pushing away. Done!

Just do do 3 sets of 15 reps that take 4 seconds each for a period of 7 weeks and you’ll be able to get back to living your life — pain-free.

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