There are some simple steps you can take and learn how to prevent tennis elbow from ever happening to you.
Not to mention the misery, expense and time wasted out of your busy day trying to overcome your injury.
Many of these preventative measures may sound like common sense but you would be surprised at how many people make them.
The first step should be to evaluate what you are doing with your dominant arm on a daily basis.
Are you engaged in any repetitive motions or actions that puts strain and stress on your forearm?
Do you notice any elbow pain and discomfort at night or when you wake in the morning?
Has your grip strength been getting less and less?
How about dropping light items every now and then?
If you can say yes to any of these, then please continue reading…
Top 10 Ways On How to Prevent Tennis Elbow From Happening to You:
1. Physical Conditioning. If you don’t use the muscles in your forearm on a daily basis, then you are putting yourself at risk of injury. As the saying goes, “use it or lose it”.
2. Avoid repetitive tasks. If you are an active in sports and you haven’t played for a while make sure that you take it easy, especially if you are performing hitting/impact movements with your arm. It may take a number of weeks to build your strength back up and return to the form you once had.
3. Do forearm exercises. Every other day, perform simple wrist flexion and extension exercises which target the muscles in your forearm. Because your forearm muscles attach at your elbow, they need to stay strong especially if you are working your arm strenuously day in and day out.
4. Take breaks. If you are involved in any sort of construction work, even weekend do it yourself projects, take breaks and rest your arm. If your arm is really sore, apply some ice to help with the pain. It is repeated arm movements that cause tennis elbow in the first place. Movements that require continuous wrist extension tend to stress your extensor tendon which is where tennis elbow happens. If at all possible try switching arms. If playing a sport that requires a lot of arm movement make sure to take plenty of breaks during the match.
5. Be smart when you lift. Regardless of heavy the object is, always keep your palms facing your body with your arms bent. This takes the stress off the small forearm muscles and tendons and places in on the larger muscles such as your biceps, back and chest.
6. Warmup and stretch. Before you engage in any physical activity, you should get the blood pumping to your muscles. This allows your muscles to be more flexible and improve your range of motion. This decreases your risk of injury.
7. Check your equipment. You would not believe how many people engage in sports or use tools/equipment that is way to large for them to handle properly. This not only makes you inefficient but puts you at risk of injuries such as tennis elbow. If you are playing a sport such as tennis or golf, quickly ask your local pro if your equipment is the right size for you.
8. Technique. Form and technique are a must if you want to prevent tennis elbow. The sloppier your form, the greater the risk of injury. A good technique whether it is playing tennis or using construction tools will allow you to play longer as their is less stress on the smaller muscles and tendons. You’ll have more fun and fatigue much slower.
9. Tennis elbow strap. Within the first few days of suffering tennis elbow, a strap can be beneficial. This is a type of brace that is worn below your elbow to help dissipate the pain throughout your forearm. Adding pressure to your tendon can help reduce pain. Never pull the strap too tight as it can cut the circulation off in your arm.
10. Check your pain scale. If you are on a scale of 1-10, at a level 5 or more, stop what you are doing immediately. Or if you notice your pain is getting worse, it’s time to pack it in and take time away from what is causing your arm pain.
For individuals who notice the slightest aching in their elbow right now, head out to your Doctor to have your elbow examined.
You could very well already be suffering from the early warning signs and stages of tennis elbow.
It is not any injury where you can sit around waiting for it to heal on it’s own.
You need to be proactive and get started with a treatment program as soon as possible.
If you play tennis or any other racquet sport, it is important that you have the right racquet for your body size.
Also consider the questions in this post: Can You Continue to Play Tennis When You Have Tennis Elbow: Consider These 5 Factors
That means not using a racquet that is too heavy for you or using a grip that is too big or small.
In many instances, players are using the wrong racquet based not only on their body size but skill level as well.
Another step you can take in preventing tennis elbow is to make sure that you apply ice to your injured elbow at least twice a day.
Preferably before you engage in any movements that aggravates your elbow and immediately after you finish.
Always listen to your body and watch out for the warning signs that something is not right.
When it comes to tennis elbow, it can go from a mild case to quite severe in a very short time frame.
The earlier you seek out treatment and have your elbow professionally diagnosed, the sooner you will recover.
Unfortunately far too many people choose to ignore even the slightest tightness in their arm in hopes that it will go away on it’s own.
If it is tennis elbow, I can tell you that you need to take proactive measures to ensure your injury gets better and not worse.
If you want to learn more on how to prevent tennis elbow, click here where a whiteboard video tutorial will explain everything there is to know about tennis elbow.