Parkridge Bone & Joint - September 10, 2018

Have you ever heard someone mention “tennis elbow” and wondered what that is?

Long story short—tennis elbow is pain in the elbow caused by overuse. It can cause a burning sensation in the elbow, as well as a loss of grip strength.

The condition affects more than 3 percent of the population, and men between ages 30 and 50 are the most likely to experience it. Let’s take a deeper dive into what the condition is and how it can be prevented.

How Does Tennis Elbow Occur?

Contrary to what the name might suggest, tennis elbow doesn’t just occur in tennis players. When the muscles and tendons in your forearm are strained due to overuse, tennis elbow is the result. Although the injury most commonly occurs due to athletic activity, it can also crop up when the elbow is overused in other repetitive motions, including those involved in a job.

But even if repetitive motion involving the arm is part of your daily life, there are steps you can take to prevent tennis elbow.

How Do You Prevent Tennis Elbow?

Let’s look at some ways you can avoid overusing the arm and elbow to the extent that tennis elbow occurs:

First, try and avoid repetitive tasks, especially when it comes to certain activities like sweeping the floor or throwing a ball. But we recognize that isn’t always possible when a motion is an unavoidable part of your work or daily life.

In those cases, taking regular breaks from the activity—even if for just 10 minutes—can make all the difference.

Second, stretching can also help prevent tennis elbow. You probably know to stretch before and after physical activity, but it’s also important to stretch on a regular basis, too.

Regular stretching helps improve the body’s flexibility, reduce soreness, improve posture and prevent injuries. If you exercise regularly or have a job that involves repetitive motion, stretching can be your best friend—and a key way of preventing soreness and injury.

Finally, rest when you can. Rest is a vital component of preventing tennis elbow and is necessary after long periods of time. Make it a point to rest between chores, practices, games or any other activity that could put you at risk for tennis elbow.

Experiencing elbow pain? Make an appointment with one of the knowledgeable medical professionals today to uncover the underlying cause and get you back to feeling your best.