Most of us may have been inspired by the recent finale of the Australian Open, which drew to a close with an exciting match. Before we dust off our racquet and shoes, there are a few things we need to be aware of to minimise the risk of injury.
Not always associated with tennis, tennis elbow a term frequently coined up for pain localised in the upper lateral elbow quadrant which can be exacerbated with prolonged forearm loading and movements.
The technical definition is, lateral epicondylitis; and is specifically localised in 1-2cm down from the bony region of the elbow. There is pain localised in the lateral elbow region with certain action with gripping, holding and lifting objects, like a tennis racquet. The discomfort can also be further exacerbated with pronation of the forearm and extension of the elbow, which are crucial movements required for backhand and serving manoeuvres in the game.
You must be aware that pushing in to pain is not the best idea, and can further exacerbate the already existing injury in the forearm. Management of the discomfort can be achieved with a daily program, such as;
- Applying an ice massage or an ice pack over the sore site for 20minutes on and 2 hours off
- Minimising the load and impact on the forearm
- Taping or bracing the region to reduce the load and trauma to the site.
- Consulting your local physiotherapist in Ergoworks to provide treatment techniques such as soft tissue massage, integrated dry needling or other therapeutic techniques to manage the pain.
Managing the injury will specific exercises which are guided by your physiotherapist will be beneficial in strengthening the tendon and encouraging the healing process.
A thorough musculoskeletal assessment of the upper limb, treatment and commencement of a guided exercise program can be compiled up by your treating physiotherapist who can assist you in getting back on to the court in no time.