Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by tennis005, Dec 1, 2009.
How exactly do you get tennis elbow. Overuse? Wrong technique? Too heavy or light a racket?
All or any of the above. The wrong kind of strings (e.g., too stiff, poly, etc.) can also cause tennis elbow.
I've heard/read that it is caused by repetitive motion where you straighten your wrist and turn it at the same time against some resistance. It has something to do with tendons rubbing against something. This kind of movement is obviously common in tennis, but I've had it a while, while back when I used to do tuckpointing. I've also noticed that the most common cause is improper technique - mostly when you are too late on your shot and you tend to pull it rather than hitting because that's where your wrist works/moves the most. Since most people have improper backhand than the 'tennis elbow' relates to pain on the outside of your elbow. But if you have 'late' forhand than you are likely to develop pain on the inside of the elbow (I'm not sure if it is still called tennis elbow, but the cause is pretty much the same).
The extensor muscles of the forearm thin out to tendons that insert on the bone at the outside aspect of the elbow.
Any stress on these extensor forearm muscles is transferred to this narrow point of insertion. Once the inflammatory response starts, it can take a long time to resolve. And using the arm while it is inflamed can keep the inflammation going.
The most classic case of tennis elbow occurs in beginners who snap their wrists forward with either their groundstrokes or serves. The repetitive over flexion strains the tendons at the point of insertion and the pain of tennis elbow results. Occasionally though, tennis elbow can occur from one acute mishit where the racquet twists and strains the muscle/tendon.
Good technique, and having well developed forearm muscles should help prevent tennis elbow from occurring.
Very light racquets don't have the mass to dampen vibrations and are more liable to twist the arm on mishits. Stiff (poly, kevlar) strings at high tension, or very stiff racquet frames can also result in more repetitive jarring stress on the arm leading to tennis elbow.
Too heavy a racquet also can put a strain on the arm.
And "tennis elbow" can happen with other activities that put stress on the forearm muscles, including weight lifting.
I mishit an overhead during a tournament on 10/31 and I haven't swung a racquet ever since. My job has me at a workstation using a mouse daily. I am a part time musician and play keyboards most of the time with my right hand. And then I like to ride my motorcycle. The only adjustment I've made is moving the mouse to my left hand while I recover from TE.
when you make contact w/ the ball the shock should be absorrbed by your shoulders, so stretch your shoulders before you play.
Thanks for the info everyone. There are alot of threads about how to help heal TE but not many on how it happens or how to prevent it.
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