Golfer’s Elbow (End)
Returning to Sports
Warm up. Always warm up before you play. Put all of your major joints through their complete range of motion and work up a “sweat” prior to stepping on the tennis court or golf course. Follow this by slowly performing the motions that you use in your sport. In tennis, do easy strokes next, and then slowly increase your intensity until you are sweating again. The forearm muscles should be stretched well after the warm up.
Your Racquet. Use a lighter weight racquet and move your hand up a bit on the grip. Change to a racquet that has greater spring. Reduce the string tension. Grip size can also be an important factor. If possible, discuss equipment with your local pro.
Your Stroke. In tennis, the forehand stroke, the serve or the overhead can cause medial epicondylitis especially if a lot of spin is applied. Avoid the shots that aggravate the problem. Reduce wrist motion to a minimum. Lessons may be necessary to alter your strokes.
Your Game. When you go return to your sport, start back slowly. In tennis, warm up first and rally at first for only short periods of time, avoiding problem shots. Play less time each day or play doubles. Avoid playing competitive games until your elbow is healed. In golf start with only putting and chip shots. Slowly work up from a few holes to a complete game.
After the Game. Stretch the muscle after you are through playing. Apply ice to the elbow for 20 minutes.
Exercises to stretch and strengthen the muscles attached to the injured tendon will help with the healing process. Stretches and exercises should be avoided if they are painful. The following exercises can be done every other day until yow symptoms subside. Continue to use the exercises as a warm-up before tennis, golf or other gripping activities.
Resisted Wrist Flexion
With tubing wrapped around the hand and the opposite end secured under foot, keep the palm facing up and bend the wrist and hand upward as far as you can. Hold one count and lower slowly 3 counts. Repeat 10 to 20 times, two times per day. This exercise can also be done with a dumbbell.
Resisted Wrist Extension
With tubing wrapped around the hand and the opposite end secured under foot, keep the palm facing down and bend the wrist and hand upward as far as you can. Hold 1 count and lower slowly 3 counts. Repeat 10 to 20 times, two times per day. This exercise can also be done with a dumbbell.
Resisted Forearm Supination and Pronation
Holding a dumbbell, with the forearm supported on your thigh, slowly turn the palm facing up and then slowly turn the palm facing down. Make sure to hold the elbow still and only move the forearm. Repeat 10 to 20 times each way, one to two times per day.
Wrist Flexor Stretch
Hold the arm with the elbow straight and the palm facing up. Grasp the involved hand at the fingers and stretch the wrist backward, until a stretch is felt on the inside of the forearm. Hold 15 seconds, repeat 3 to 5 times, 2 to 3 times per day.
Wrist Extensor Stretch
Hold the arm with the elbow straight and the palm facing down. Push downward on the back of the involved hand until a stretch is felt in the muscles on the outside of the forearm. Hold 15 seconds, repeat 3 to 5