In my previous article, which was about cricket injuries, I briefly mentioned that tennis elbow is a common injury sustained by cricketers. Examples from recent times are Sachin Tendulkar and Nasser Hussain, who both suffered with this condition for long periods. Not only is this a problem for cricketers and tennis players, as the name would suggest, it is extremely common for painters & decorators as well as people working in office environments, due to the repetitive nature of these roles.

Tennis elbow, or lateral epicondylitis, occurs following repeated strain and overuse of the muscles and tendons in the forearm. The strenuous overuse of these structures causes small injuries or tears to the fibres normally around the outer part of your elbow, stimulating an inflammatory response. As a result of these tiny injuries or tears and the inflammatory process the following symptoms are typical:
• Pain located on the outer part of forearm just below the elbow
• Pain when lifting and carrying objects
• Pain or difficulty when gripping small objects such as a pen or cup handle
• Pain on movements involving twisting of the forearm such as when using a door handle or opening lids on jars

Treating Tennis Elbow

Treatment for this type of injury in the first instance is to rest and apply ice to the affected area to reduce the inflammatory response from the body. Following this various physiotherapy techniques such as ultrasound, massage and exercise can be used. In addition, taping of the affected area (using K-tape) is a commonly used technique to reduce aggravation of the symptoms and therefore reducing pain through slightly altering the mechanics of the muscles and tendons in the forearm. By changing the mechanics of these muscles and tendons the load on the affected area is reduced allowing the healing process to take place and normal function to be resumed.

Howzat!

Kevin qualified as a physiotherapist in 2014. He started at Physiofusion in 2015, primarily treating from Burnley and Padiham clinics. He is a keen cricketer and plays for Padiham Cricket Club.

More about Kevin