Tennis Elbow – The Full Guide For Tennis Players | My Tennis HQ (2023)

Even though tennis is not a contact sport, tennis players do not fall behind other athletes when it comes to injuries. Wrist, back, shoulder, hip, knee, ankle, and abdominal lesions are among the most common injuries for tennis players, in many cases forcing them to step away from the courts for several months. Even the best players in the world are subject to them – Roger Federer sat out for 6 months in 2016 due to a back injury, Nadal sat out for 7 months in 2012 due to a knee issue, and Andy Murray even retired from tennis for a while due to a hip injury.

There are two reasons why tennis players have injuries so frequently. First, lower body injuries usually happen due to the frequency of sprinting, stopping, and direction-changing that happens during a tennis match. Second, upper body injuries happen due to the large number of times players need to hit the same shot over and over.

While all the injuries mentioned above are fairly common, there is one injury that happens a lot more frequently than all others – tennis elbow.

Tennis elbow is a painful condition that affects not only athletes who play racket sports, but even other athletes and non-athletes as well. Affecting over 200,000 people in the US per year (2 to 3%), tennis elbow can be a very debilitating injury that can affect several areas of your life.

As a tennis player, you should have a good understanding of what tennis elbow is in order to avoid it and stay injury-free. In this article, we will cover exactly what tennis elbow is, how to treat it, and – most importantly – how to prevent it.

The information below is outlined in the following way:

  • What Is Tennis Elbow?
  • Tennis Elbow Causes
  • Tennis Elbow Symptoms
  • Is Tennis Elbow Painful?
  • Can You Play Tennis With Tennis Elbow?
  • Tennis Elbow Treatments
  • How Long To Heal Tennis Elbow?
  • Tennis Elbow Stretches
  • Tennis Elbow Exercises

What Is Tennis Elbow?

Tennis elbow, also known as lateral epicondylitis, is a common injury among tennis players (and players of other racket sports) caused by an inflammation of the tendons in the outside of the elbow and forearm. What usually causes tennis elbow is a large and frequent number of repetitions of the same movement, inflaming the tendons and causing a lot of pain.

Your elbow is where your upper arm bone (humerus) joins your forearm bones (ulna and radius). Surrounding these bones are several different ligaments, tendons, and muscles. The purpose of your forearms muscles is to move your hand and fingers, while the purpose of your ligaments and tendons is to connect your muscles to your bones.

The tendons that join your forearm muscles to your humerus are called extensors, and tennis elbow is usually caused by an inflammation of the tendon called Extensor Carpi Radialis Brevis (ECRB). The humerus has a few bumps on its bottom, which are called either lateral (outside of elbow) or medial epicondyles (inside of elbow), and the ECRB is connected to the lateral epicondyle. This is why the scientific term for tennis elbow is lateral epicondylitis.

Tennis Elbow – The Full Guide For Tennis Players | My Tennis HQ (1)

Tennis Elbow Causes

The causes of tennis elbow are usually exercises that put a strain on the person’s forearm muscles and that are extremely repetitive. The constant repetition causes muscles and tendons to inflame, which eventually leads to pain. Tennis elbow can also be caused by hitting your elbow somewhere.

Despite its name, the majority of tennis elbow injuries are caused by activities other than tennis. Other racket sports like squash and badminton can easily lead to such injury. In addition, other activities that can cause tennis elbow include gardening, painting, brushing, plumbing, woodworking, typing, knitting, lifting weights, playing the violin, or using scissors.

In tennis, tennis elbow injuries happen most of the times when players are hitting shots on their backhand side. By hitting a large number of shots using the wrong technique, these players end up causing inflammation in their elbows. This is mostly witnessed in beginners, who end up bending their elbows too much when hitting their backhands.

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Tennis Elbow Symptoms

The main symptoms from tennis elbow are: 1) pain in the outside portion of your elbow that can extend to your upper arm, forearm, and hand; and 2) a lack of strength on your grip, which can make playing tennis very difficult. These symptoms can affect several activities in your life, as they will usually feel worse any time you use your hand or forearm – which can involve activities like turning a doorknob or even just holding a pen.

These symptoms will start slowly and will aggravate as you continue to use your arm. Since you use your forearm in so many day-to-day activities, it is likely that you will end up aggravating the inflammation.

Once the pain and weakness get to a certain point, it will be very difficult to continue playing tennis. Not only you will require more time to recover from this injury, but your body will most likely try to compensate for the pain by changing your technique – which can lead to other different injuries.

Tennis Elbow – The Full Guide For Tennis Players | My Tennis HQ (2)

As you can see in the photo above, the red areas are the ones that are normally affected by tennis elbow injuries. The yellow areas are not as common, but can also be affected if the injury becomes more extreme.

Is Tennis Elbow Painful?

Tennis elbow can be quite painful. Since your elbow is inflamed, any movement with your hand or forearm can cause further inflammation, which will generally be painful. In addition, hitting or knocking your elbow will also usually hurt if you suffer from tennis elbow.

Can You Play Tennis With Tennis Elbow?

This is a tough question, and there is no definite answer. If you can, you should stop playing tennis as soon as you realize you might be suffering from tennis elbow. If you continue playing, you might increase the damage to your elbow – which will make the recovery process slower and more difficult.

However, we understand that sometimes you might not be able to quit tennis completely for months or even a year. If that’s your case, you should make sure that you work as much as you can on treating your injury and that you follow these tips when playing tennis:

  1. If your elbow starts hurting, stop playing immediately;
  2. Know what your priorities are – continue playing or recover 100% as quickly as possible. You can’t do both at the same time, so you need to figure out what is more important to you;
  3. Correct any technique that might be aggravating your injury;
  4. Strategize your match or practice according to your injury and avoid hitting shots that hurt your elbow;
  5. Take days off and don’t play for too long at once;
  6. Take off-court recovery VERY seriously – stretching, exercising, and icing might help you to continue playing tennis while healing your tennis elbow injury.

Tennis Elbow Treatment

Even though tennis elbow can be quite debilitating, the good news is that it shouldn’t require you to end your tennis career. In the majority of cases, tennis elbow will heal on its own, provided you take the necessary measures. In essence, tennis elbow pain is caused by inflammation and the pain will go away as soon as the inflammation does so as well.

There are several things you can do to help your tennis elbow get better, most of which we will cover below.

Icing The Injured Area

One of the first steps you should take once you start feeling pain in your elbow is to ice the injured area. Notice that you should never ice an injury before exercising the injured area, as that could make the injury worse. Icing your elbow should help to reduce both pain and inflammation, which makes it one of the most effective measures for a fast healing.

In order to ice your tennis elbow injury properly, you should follow the following tips:

  • If you played tennis and your elbow started hurting, ice it immediately;
  • Keep your icing sections between 15 to 20 minutes long, and never longer as that can make the injury worse;
  • Give yourself at least one-hour breaks between icing sections, giving the injured area enough time to recover;
  • Try to move the ice around the injury instead of just keeping it in one place;
  • Never apply ice directly to your skin, as that can damage the tissue further. We found a very-well icing pack designed specifically for tennis elbow on Amazon, from ubertherm. This cool tool will keep your whole elbow icing and compressing while keeping it free from ice burns.

Tennis Elbow – The Full Guide For Tennis Players | My Tennis HQ (3)Tennis Elbow – The Full Guide For Tennis Players | My Tennis HQ (4)

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If your pain is too intense, you can consider taking a painkiller with anti-inflammatory properties, like paracetamol or ibuprofen. If you choose to do so, you may also purchase these items in a cream version, which you can apply directly to the affected area. These creams may help to reduce pain and inflammation, especially when combined with icing.


Another very useful treatment method is to massage your elbow. An effective massage will make more blood circulate to your tendons, which normally don’t get a lot of blood when they are injured. A deep-tissue massage will help your tennis elbow heal faster than it would by otherwise just letting it rest. You can choose to see a physical therapist to get a massage, but you can also choose to do it yourself. The following video contains a nice overview of what a tennis elbow massage should be like.

If you choose to take your self-massage a step further, I recommend that you buy a massage gun like this one. These tools will get really deep into your tissue and you can do it all while watching tv. They come with adjustable heads and speeds so you can figure out which one works better for you.

Tennis Elbow – The Full Guide For Tennis Players | My Tennis HQ (5)Tennis Elbow – The Full Guide For Tennis Players | My Tennis HQ (6)

Shockwave Therapy

Another non-invasive method to heal tennis elbow is using shockwave therapy. When doing so, you connect small electrodes to the injured area and these electrodes keep sending electric stimuli to activate your muscles and tendons. This can be effective when combined with the other methods to increase circulation in the area and speed up the recovery process. While you can purchase your own shockwave therapy machines online, I suggest that you see a physical therapist if you are looking to use this method.

Using Tennis Elbow Accessories

If your pain is not too severe and you’re considering playing through the pain while waiting for your elbow to heal itself, you may want to consider using a tennis elbow accessory. The most commonly used accessory is the compression sleeve, which keeps your elbow compressed and reduces pain. These sleeves are worn during workouts and tennis matches, so they are only treating the symptoms and not the cause. If you decide to use them, you should still work on some of the other treatments mentioned on this page.

Tennis Elbow – The Full Guide For Tennis Players | My Tennis HQ (7)Tennis Elbow – The Full Guide For Tennis Players | My Tennis HQ (8)

Exercises & Stretches

Exercises and stretches can be one of the most effective ways to heal your tennis elbow and keep it from coming back. These methods will strengthen the injured area, make it more flexible, and increase circulation – all good things to fight tennis elbow. We will cover these methods in more detail below, but for now, you should just know that exercising and stretching may be your best friends.

Adjusting Your Technique

Even if you are very disciplined with your tennis elbow treatments, nothing will keep it from coming back if you have a poor tennis technique. If your backhand is not properly executed, the elbow inflammation will continue to happen and so will the pain. You can be as strong and flexible as you want, but you can’t fight physics. Adjusting your technique is incredibly important in order to prevent further recurrences. If you want to learn a little more about the proper backhand technique, we have written a great step-by-step guide, and you can check it here: .

Steroid Injections & Surgery

Finally, you also have the option of pursuing more invasive treatments like steroid injections and surgery. Personally, I highly advise you against those, as there is no need to take such extreme measures. A more holistic treatment will have a much better effect, and it will be a lot better for your body in the long-run.

How Long To Heal Tennis Elbow?

Depending on the severity of your tennis elbow injury and on how disciplined you are with your treatment, you should expect to heal your elbow in a period that can range from 1 to 18 months. On average, however, most tennis elbow injuries heal in 6 to 12 months.

Tennis Elbow Stretches

While some people prefer to hire a physical therapist when treating a tennis elbow injury, you can recover just as fast by doing stretches and exercises at home by yourself. Working on the exercises and stretches mentioned below will be the most important aspect of your treatment – not only for pain relief but for full and fast healing.

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If your injury is very painful and you are struggling to even move your elbow, we highly recommend that you start with the stretches. If your pain is not too bad, however, you may choose to start with a mix of stretches and exercises. We will give you a list of the best active recovery exercises for tennis elbow we know of, but it’s up to you to figure out which exercises work best for you. It is normal to feel a little discomfort in some exercises, but if you feel any pain, you should stop the exercise immediately.

Stretch #1 – Wrist Activation – Closed Fist

Even though tennis elbow injuries are caused by an inflammation in your elbow, the majority of stretches and exercises involve loosening up your wrist and forearm muscles. By doing so, the relaxation of the muscles will allow for the inflammation and pain to decrease.

The first stretch will be a great starting point if your pain is quite intense. Well, it’s not really a stretch but some kind of movement. You should follow these steps:

  1. Sit down on a chair comfortably
  2. Bend your elbows at a 90-degree angle, but keep it a few inches away from your leg
  3. Make a fist with your hand, with the back of your hand facing the ceiling
  4. Keep it fairly loose – you’re not stretching yet, just activating it
  5. Move your fist in an up-and-down motion, keeping your elbow in place
  6. Complete 2 sets of 10 reps each

Stretch #2 – Wrist Activation – Hammer Grip

This activation movement works similarly to the one mentioned above, but with a slightly different grip. This movement will activate different areas of your forearm, so you can do it immediately after the movement above.

  1. Rotate your fist 90 degrees to the right, as if you were holding a hammer
  2. Move your fist in an up-and-down motion (it will be a little awkward), keeping your elbow in place
  3. Complete 2 sets of 10 reps each

Stretch #3 – Wrist Rotation

The third exercise in this progression might be a little more difficult, but it is just as important. You should remain in the same position, and you can do it immediately after the previous two movements.

  1. Extend your fingers, while still keeping them close together
  2. Begin with the back of your hand facing the ceiling
  3. Rotate your hand so the palm of your hand faces the ceiling
  4. Repeat that movement while keeping your elbow in place
  5. Complete 2 sets of 10 reps each

Stretch #4 – Wrist Extension Stretch

The next stretch in this list is the wrist extension, and it will stretch your forearm. This stretch will usually not get the exact spot where your pain is located, but you should do it nonetheless. By starting off with this one, you will make it easier to move on to the next stretches. Follow these steps for this stretch:

  1. You can either stand up or sit down for this exercise, just make sure you have a straight back
  2. Extend your elbow, but make sure you keep at least a slight bend. If you’re in a lot of pain, you can give it a good bend
  3. Extend your fingers, with the back of your hand facing you (as if you were telling someone to “stop”)
  4. Use your other hand to pull your fingers back – which will stretch your forearm
  5. Hold it for 15 seconds, completing a total of 5 reps

Stretch #5 – Wrist Flexion Stretch

This stretch is the opposite of the wrist extension, and it will generally hit right where your pain is.

  1. This time extend your fingers down, with the palm of your hand facing you
  2. Using your other hand, push the back of your hand towards yourself until you feel a stretch on the outside of your arm
  3. Hold it for 15 seconds, completing a total of 5 reps

Stretch #6 – Wall Squeeze Stretch

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The last stretch is a little different, but it can give you a great deal of relief.

  1. Find a wall that has a corner in it
  2. While standing up, bend your elbow at a 45-degree angle and touch the outside of your arm (right above the elbow) against the corner of the wall
  3. With your non-injured hand, form an “L” shape with your index finger and your thumb
  4. Using the L shape, push the forearm of your injured arm against the wall
  5. Keep squeezing the hand of your injured arm into a fist
  6. Squeeze it 10 times, and do 3 sets of it

Tennis Elbow Exercises

If you’re feeling comfortable with the stretches listed above, you may want to move on to some exercises. By strengthening your forearm, you will not only initiate more blood circulation in the injured area but you will strengthen the muscles around it. By strengthening the muscles, you will minimize the chances of injuring your elbow again. Once again, if you feel any pain during these exercises, you should stop them immediately.

Exercise #1 – Wrist Extension Strengthening

This exercise is essentially the exercise version of the stretch mentioned earlier. You should follow these steps:

  1. Lay your forearm against a flat surface, with your hand just barely hanging off the table
  2. With the back of your hand facing the ceiling, engage in an up-and-down motion while keeping your arm still
  3. With no weight, repeat that movement 30 times once a day. If you were able to finish it without pain, you can move on to adding weight to your hand.
  4. Start with no weight, then use either small dumbbells (1, 2, 3 lbs) or canned foods if you don’t have any dumbbells

Exercise #2 – Flexion Strengthening

Follow the same steps as the exercise mentioned above, but in the other direction.

Exercise #3 – Hammer Swing

For this exercise, you should remain in the same position as the exercises mentioned above.

  1. Use the “hammer” grip we mentioned earlier for the Wrist Activation – Hammer Grip stretch
  2. You can either choose to use a dumbbell here or a hammer. A hammer may even be better, as it has most of its weight on the tip.
  3. Move your wrist from one side to the other – as if you were simulating a windshield wiper
  4. Repeat this movement 10 times, and complete 2 sets of it

Exercise #4 – Stress Ball Squeeze

Another helpful exercise involves a stress ball. These are generally very cheap (you can buy them on Amazon, like this one with different resistance levels), and they can be very useful. All you need to do is:

  1. Keep your elbow at a 90-degree position
  2. Squeeze the stress ball slowly, and release it slowly
  3. Repeat it 10 – 20 times, once a day

Exercise #5 – Towel Twist

This is one of the best exercises for tennis elbow, as it will build up strength in just the right muscles. All you need to do this one is a towel.

  1. Sit comfortably
  2. Roll a hand towel a few times, and hold it with both hands
  3. Extend your elbows in front of you, keeping a slight bend
  4. Rotate the hand of the injured arm back and forth, twisting the towel
  5. If it’s too easy, roll the towel a few more times to make it more difficult
  6. Complete 2 sets of 10 reps each

Exercise #6 – FlexBar Twist

The final exercise is essentially a modification of the towel twist using a tool specially designed for strengthening the forearm. It’s called the FlexBar, and you can buy it on Amazon here. The manufacturer of this brand claims that it reduces elbow pain by 81%; I’ve used it in the past and I can tell you that these little things are pretty neat. In order to use this, here’s what you should do:

  1. Sit comfortably
  2. If you want to flex your wrist (move it downwards), you can start by holding the Flexbar as you would in a regular hammer grip. If you want to extend your wrist (move it upwards), you should bend your wrist down before holding the FlexBar (see pictures below).
  3. Grab the Flexbar with your other hand and extend your elbows, keeping a slight bend
  4. Rotate your wrist according to the exercise you’re going for – there should always be resistance against the movement
  5. Complete 3 sets of 10 reps each

Final Thoughts

While tennis elbow can be a pretty debilitating injury, there’s no need to panic about it. As long as you’re responsible and take your treatment and recovery pretty seriously, you will be back on the tennis court in no time. Remember that you should use a combination of the treatments mentioned above in order to fully heal your injury, and that your best choice might be to correct your tennis technique in order to avoid future tennis elbow occurrences!

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What do tennis players do for tennis elbow? ›

Grip size, racket balance and string tension

I often recommend double-wrapping the racket handle for patients with tennis elbow. This allows them to grip the racket more gently but it also moves the balance of the racket nearer the hand and so offloads the tendon.

How can I get rid of tennis elbow fast? ›

Lifestyle and home remedies
  1. Rest. Avoid activities that aggravate your elbow pain.
  2. Pain relievers. Try over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB) or naproxen (Aleve).
  3. Ice. Apply ice or a cold pack for 15 minutes three to four times a day.
  4. Technique.
25 Feb 2021

What is the best arm position for tennis elbow? ›

To avoid putting strain on your elbow while recovering from tennis elbow, you should sleep on your back and try to keep your arms in a straighter, more natural relaxed position. It helps to prop up each arm on pillows on either side of you.

How do I stop tennis elbow tennis? ›

warm up properly and gently stretch your arm muscles before playing a sport that involves repetitive arm movements. use lightweight tools or racquets and make their grip size bigger, to avoid putting extra strain on your tendons.

Is there a permanent cure for tennis elbow? ›

Tennis elbow will get better without treatment (known as a self-limiting condition). Tennis elbow usually lasts between 6 months and 2 years, with most people (90%) making a full recovery within a year. The most important thing to do is to rest your injured arm and stop doing the activity that caused the problem.

Should I stop playing tennis if I have tennis elbow? ›

If your tennis elbow is severe, flares up again, or causes significant pain on the court, stop playing immediately. Vary your training schedule; play on alternate days, play hard on one day and easier on the next two, for instance – until you're pain-free.

What foods help tennis elbow? ›

Vitamin A enhances and supports early inflammation during injury, reverses post-injury immune suppression, and assists in collagen formation to help repair tissue damage. Great sources of this include sweet potatoes, carrots, dark leafy greens, and fish.

Who is the best treatment for tennis elbow? ›

One of the best ways to treat stubborn tennis elbow is with physical therapy. It can improve blood flow to the tendons, which will speed healing, too. A therapist may also teach you ways to change your tennis stroke or other activities that caused your elbow troubles.

What exercises should you avoid with tennis elbow? ›

Chin-ups, pushups and bench presses: All of these movements put a strain on your elbow's flexors, which can lead to further irritation of the lateral tendons of your elbow. Wrist exercises: It's best to avoid any wrist exercises, especially forearm dumbbell curls or barbell extensions.

Is tennis elbow brace or sleeve better? ›

Generally, tennis elbow braces aren't recommended for extended use, i.e., wearing them for hours on end. Instead, people will usually only wear them during an activity that causes discomfort. However, people often wear compression sleeves for extended periods as they offer more general support.

Is it better to rest or exercise tennis elbow? ›

"With tennis or golfer's elbow, you need to settle it down and rest it but after that, the best research and evidence points to exercise as the most effective treatment for healing," said Chris Zarski, a clinical assistant professor in the Faculty of Rehabilitation Medicine at Augustana Campus.

Will a compression sleeve help tennis elbow? ›

During Tennis: When you're playing tennis, compression sleeves can help provide support and improve performance. After Tennis: Once you wrap up playing tennis, you can continue to wear your compression sleeve to aid recovery and reduce soreness.

Why do I always get tennis elbow? ›

Tennis elbow is mostly caused by overusing your forearm due to a repetitive or strenuous activity. It can also sometimes occur after banging or knocking your elbow. If the muscles in your forearm are strained, tiny tears and inflammation can develop near the bony lump (lateral epicondyle) on the outside of your elbow.

Does a bigger grip help tennis elbow? ›

Prolonged use of a grip that's too small can contribute to tennis elbow problems. A grip that's too large inhibits wrist snap on serves, makes changing grips more difficult and also requires more muscle strength. Prolonged use of a grip that's too big can also contribute to tennis elbow problems.

What happens if you don't treat tennis elbow? ›

If left untreated, tennis elbow may become chronic and last for months, even years, especially if you continue the repetitive activity that caused the problem. There may also be nerve entrapment in the forearm, which is why it's important to see a specialist for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment.

What happens if tennis elbow doesn't go away? ›

In most cases, true tennis elbow which does not heal after 6 to 8 weeks is due to a non-inflammatory issue. 80% of these cases do not recover, as the tendon matrix compromised by inappropriate loading; such as the overuse of the tendon. This may lead to early wear and tear of the tendon matrix.

Why does tennis elbow take so long to heal? ›

Tennis elbow is a painful and disabling condition that is said to develop through overuse, but why does it then refuse to heal and defy treatment? The reason is that there is an often overlooked issue that creates stress on the elbow that contributes to the condition developing, then prevents it from healing.

How can I prevent my tennis elbow from getting worse? ›

You can help prevent lateral epicondylitis by doing things like warming up before exercise or sports, increasing activity slowly, using the right equipment for activities, and strengthening your arm muscles. Follow your healthcare provider's recommendations to get rest and manage pain and swelling.

Can you make tennis elbow worse? ›

It's classified as an overuse injury due to repetitive motions, which means continuing with the activity that caused it can lead to a worsening of the injury. Tennis elbow needs to be evaluated by a doctor to rule out other conditions that it shares symptoms with.

Does turmeric help tennis elbow? ›

You should opt for turmeric: Turmeric contains curcumin which can help you to speed up healing, reduce the pain and inflammation and relax you! You can consume turmeric milk and you will feel better for sure.

How do you massage your elbow for tennis? ›

Tennis Elbow Massage
  1. Place the 2nd finger of your opposite hand on the outside of the elbow and rub across the tendon (painful area) for 5 minutes.
  2. Do not press too hard but there may be some mild pain whilst having the area ' frictioned '. Repeat once a day.
  3. Stop if your pain worsens after the treatment.
18 Jul 2022

What are two treatments for tennis elbow? ›

Rest and over-the-counter pain relievers often help relieve tennis elbow. If conservative treatments don't help or if symptoms are disabling, your doctor might suggest surgery.

How long does it take for tennis elbow to disappear? ›

It may take six to 18 months for symptoms to go away. A small number of people need surgery. Between 80% to 90% of people who get tennis elbow surgery see their symptoms improve within one year.

Can tennis elbow heal in 3 weeks? ›

“Many patients will eventually get better if they rest their arm and wrist, even if no treatment is provided,” says Dr. Daluiski. However, this can take weeks, or even months.

Does stretching make tennis elbow worse? ›

Things to Avoid for Tennis Elbow Treatment

If you're hammering those wrist and elbow stretches every day you're doing more harm than good. That's because when you stretch you're actually pulling and stressing the tendon attachment of your forearm muscles instead of letting the area heal.

What muscles are weak with tennis elbow? ›

Repetitive overuse of the wrist extensors often leads to a situation in which the breakdown exceeds the muscles capacity for repair, resulting in small tears to your extensor carpi radialis brevis, one of the primary muscles involved in tennis elbow.

Should I wear my tennis elbow strap all the time? ›

It should be worn at night and during the day when the pain is more bothersome. The second brace is a tennis-elbow strap (also known as a counterforce brace). This is recommended anytime you are lifting or performing activities such as working out, yardwork or grocery shopping.

How often should I wear an elbow brace for tennis elbow? ›

You use the elbow brace throughout the day, during your regular activities. Use it for a couple of weeks to see if you have an improvement in your symptoms. If it does help then that may be all you need to do; in addition to maybe taking an anti-inflammatory.

Do tennis elbow bands work? ›

Bracing for Tennis Elbow

But bracing on its own does not always accomplish that aim. Elbow tendonitis takes time a long time to heal. Bracing alone can provide some temporary relief, but the pain will typically return soon after the brace is removed.

Is ibuprofen good for tennis elbow? ›

Over The Counter Pain Medication (such as Ibuprofen, Advil, Aleve, Motrin, Naprosyn, Tylenol.): These medications are very helpful in reducing the pain of tennis elbow. They should be used under the direction of a physician. We recommend the medicine be used as needed when treating severe cases.

How tight should a tennis elbow support be? ›

You should feel slight pressure, but it shouldn't be overly tight. If you have any tingling, numbness, or discoloration in your hand or arm, then loosen the strap and retighten with less force.

How long should I wear a compression sleeve for tennis elbow? ›

Yes, it's true that most of the “authorities,” such as Doctors, consumer medical websites and Physical Therapists do recommend that you wear some kind of support pretty much all the time for a few weeks to help “rest, protect and heal” your Tennis Elbow.

Is heavier racket better for tennis elbow? ›

Generally, a heavier tennis racquet will absorb more shock, so if you're suffering from tennis elbow or golfer's elbow, it can be beneficial to use a racquet with more weight.

Is lower tension better for tennis elbow? ›

Lower tensions are usually better for tennis elbow, but there is a limit to how low you should go. I'd recommend that you work with your stringer to slowly reduce your tension over time until you find a sweet spot that will still allow you to have some control as well.

What kind of therapy is good for tennis elbow? ›

Physical therapy for tennis elbow

“The approach is to utilize exercise to help improve the strength, flexibility, and endurance of the affected muscles and tendons,” he says. Other techniques, such as ice massage, electrical stimulation, or bracing may also help control pain and inflammation.

Do pros ever get tennis elbow? ›

Do pros get Tennis Elbow? Having personally treated some tennis pros, I can attest that they do get Tennis – and Golfer's Elbow.

What should I avoid doing with tennis elbow? ›

Chin-ups, pushups and bench presses: All of these movements put a strain on your elbow's flexors, which can lead to further irritation of the lateral tendons of your elbow. Wrist exercises: It's best to avoid any wrist exercises, especially forearm dumbbell curls or barbell extensions.

Is heat or ice better for tennis elbow? ›

Heat may be more helpful for chronic tendon pain, often called tendinopathy or tendinosis. Heat can increase blood flow, which may help promote healing of the tendon. Heat also relaxes muscles, which can relieve pain.

What is the main cause of tennis elbow? ›

Tennis elbow is mostly caused by overusing your forearm due to a repetitive or strenuous activity. It can also sometimes occur after banging or knocking your elbow. If the muscles in your forearm are strained, tiny tears and inflammation can develop near the bony lump (lateral epicondyle) on the outside of your elbow.

Will tennis elbow keep coming back? ›

Most people with tennis elbow feel better within a year. But it can last between six months and two years. Tennis elbow can sometimes come back again. And in some cases, it may need further treatment.

Can tennis elbow heal in 2 weeks? ›

Assuming that the injury is not particularly serious and that a patient follows the advice of their doctor, most people tend to feel relief from their pain within a few weeks. However, it may take even longer for the tendon to heal itself, with pain lasting up to two years in some cases.


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