It’s Been A While, But Finally Back!
I was on a bit of a hiatus which is why I wasn’t posting in the last month and a bit. I needed some time for myself and decided to pause with the blogging – I also took another meditation program (expect to see another blog about that soon!), which was incredibly amazing!
Anyways, I’m back at it again and today we’re gonna be talking about elbows! Specifically tennis elbow!
It may not sound so, but tennis elbow is a painful condition and those that have or continue to suffer from it can vouch for this.
From what I know, it’s the radiating pain associated with this condition that makes it so much of an annoyance. I know what radiating pain feels like, and boy oh boy, it ain’t fun!
We’ll talk more about the specifics of tennis elbow and what role (if any) massage can play in terms of treatment and relief.
For now, I encourage you to share your experience if you are dealing with this condition.
Drop a comment down below and please tell us how did you develop the condition i.e. was it through repetitive motion or something else?, how have you been addressing the pain, and most importantly, has it worked out for you or do you continue to suffer?
Drop a comment down below and tell us. We love to hear from you guys!
What Is Tennis Elbow?
Tennis elbow is a condition caused by overloading the tendons in your elbow (Source: MayoClinic). Repetitive motions are usually the culprit for this condition.
Basically, it boils down to overuse and as a result straining the tendons. This is why the condition is called tennis elbow, because tennis players would attempt a stroke repeatedly over a given period of time.
However, it’s not just tennis players who are prone to this condition. Really anyone who is performing a repetitive motion which might strain these tendons can develop the condition. For example, plumbers, painters, and even butchers might develop tennis elbow.
How Is Tennis Elbow Typically Treated?
First and foremost, tennis elbow is a medical condition and as such, I strongly recommend you seek medical advice. This is not medical advice, I’m just your everyday guy with a passion for massage!
If you are having pain in your elbow and arm, I recommend getting it checked out by a doctor. He/she will advise on how to treat the condition based on your specific situation.
So how is tennis elbow typically treated? It’s the usual combination you’d expect: get lots of rest, ice, pain meds, and of course stop doing what caused the condition in the first place!
I think that last one is super important and most people tend to sweep it under the rug. If you don’t stop what’s causing the condition, how do you expect to heal yourself!?
It’s important to recognize that the condition may be caused by poor technique, and then making yourself aware of this, and modifying the technique.
Also, tennis elbow can reoccur. Think of it this way: it’s a sign your body is giving you saying what you’re doing is causing damage. It’s important to be in tune with what our body’s tell us, whether this be through pain or some other stimulus. Developing this kind of sensitivity is important for everyone!
But what role does massage play in treatment of tennis elbow? Can it help or will it only exacerbate the condition?
Is Massage Effective At Treating Tennis Elbow ?
Absolutely, massage can be a very effective means of treating tennis elbow, if done properly. If the right technique is applied, a massage can reduce pain, improve overall flexibility, and restore a sense of comfort and well being to the patient.
Specifically, it’s deep tissue massage which has shown to be one of the most effective massages in treating tennis elbow!
Now I know many of you will be thinking this, so before you ask in the comments, I’ll address it here only! Can you self massage or do you need to see a therapist to deal with this condition?
You can definitely do self massage by yourself wherever you are! If you’re not comfortable doing it yourself, you can get someone to help you (spouse/partner etc.).
So how do you self massage for tennis elbow? There’s tons of videos online demonstrating what kind of techniques you can follow. When it comes to me, I do prefer a multi-pronged approach involving a combination of techniques such as myofascial release and cross friction fiber.
While scouring the web, I did find below video from myPhysioSA to be exactly that – that is a combination of techniques! Give it a watch, and if you’re able to, try it out and see how you fare!
One important thing to note from the video: rate of repair should be greater than rate of use. This goes back to what I was talking about earlier! If there’s a repetitive motion which you’ve been able to identify that maybe causing the issue, it’s best to either modify the motion or completely cease the activity altogether – the latter being more favorable.
Of course these techniques do take a bit to master, so be patient with it and allow yourself some time.
When Should You See A Massage Therapist?
If you can self massage, then why even bother visiting a massage therapist to begin with? If self massage is ineffective, or you find the condition has worsened, then it probably makes sense to pay a massage therapist to do what they do best.
However, the onus does fall on you to ensure you find someone who knows exactly how to deal with tennis elbow. Calling ahead of time and doing some research does definitely pay of in that regard!
Generally speaking, if you’re able to manage the condition through rest, cessation of activity, and self massage, you should have no need to seek out a massage therapist. On top of all this, I still do recommend getting it checked out by your physician, this is still important.
I Hope Your Elbow Pains Come To A Swift End!
No one should ever have to “live through” the pain, athletes or otherwise! Our bodies are capable of healing themselves if only we do the right things. Massage is one of those things which naturally allows the body’s muscles and tendons to heal and fully recover.
For something that only takes a few minutes and doesn’t require popping a pill, I’d say it’s definitely worth a shot, no?
And with that I bid you farewell and the best of luck in everything, not just your elbows! But I do hope those are pain free too! Take care and until next time!