Home Exercises for Tennis and Golfer’s Elbow
The essential home exercises for a home rehabilitation program for tennis or golfer’s elbow include
stretching and strengthening:
* to improve flexibility and range of motion
* to reduce forces on the affected tendon.
Slow, passive stretching exercises and gentle strengthening exercises can be started right away. Be
sure to breathe while you are doing these exercises.
To stretch the muscles on the top of the forearm, extend the elbow with
the palm facing the floor. Use your other hand to pull the hand down toward the inside of your forearm. (If this is painful, try performing the
maneuver with the elbow bent.)
To stretch the muscles on the underside of the forearm turn the palm toward the ceiling. With your other hand pull the hand down toward the floor.
Hold each stretch for 20 to 30 seconds, then relax a few seconds and
repeat as many times as possible within 5 minutes. Perform these stretches twice a day during
rehabilitation. You should also do them before and after any sports activity that involves the elbow.
Strengthening exercises begin with wrist curls, starting with 1-pound weights.
To strengthen the top forearm muscles bend the elbow with your palm facing
the floor. Curl your wrist toward the ceiling, hold the position for 10 to 15
seconds, then relax the wrist.
To strengthen the muscles on the underside
turn the palm toward the ceiling.
For both maneuvers, perform three sets of 10
curls once a day, every day. Other elbow
muscles (pronator and supinator muscles)
should also be strengthened by
holding the weight with the elbow flexed 90° and twisting your hand clockwise and counter clockwise.
Do three sets of 10 once a day. This exercise is especially important for those who have golfer’s elbow.
To strengthen additional forearm muscles (digital extensor muscles), place a heavy rubber band over
the tips of all the fingers as they are held together and stretch the fingers out-ward against it. Start with
three sets of 10 once a day, and then progress to several sessions a day. The activity can easily be done
at a desk or while talking on the telephone.