Nagging injuries can be a major hinderance to performance in the weight room. The most prevalent injury at the elbow joint is something commonly known as “tennis elbow” and can be incredibly frustrating to deal with. As with everything, the more you know about it the more you can do for yourself were you to find yourself in this situation.
Tennis elbow is essentially a lateral epicondylitis strain along with inflammation. However, this is not an acute inflammatory condition and is more accurately described as a tendinopathy. What’s happening is with constant abnormal loading of the extensor tendons, mainly the extensor carpi radialis brevis, resisted wrist extension becomes painful and the tendon becomes degenerative. In short, this pain is a result of a muscle imbalance and can be treated with a corrective exercise program.
If you ever experience tennis elbow yourself you will notice irritation when picking things up and in your training there will be great difficulty in the rowing exercises that involve a pronated grip. Alternatively, you will likely be able to pick up things or perform rowing exercises with a supinated grip with little to no irritation. Keeping a neutral or supinated grip will be essential during a rehabilitative process.
Treatment for tennis elbow will involve lots of forearm strengthening exercises along with proper recovery techniques to reduce the inflammation of the tendons.
Wrist Extensor exercise:
Cues: Elbow should be resting on a flat surface below the height of your shoulder, palm down, this should be a slow and controlled movement with a light dumbbell or resistance band.
Cues: thumb up, pulling up and back towards your forearm using a light weight or resistance band, slow and controlled movement.
Please reach out to any of the coaches at The Strength Feed if you have any questions about your specific injury.