Half of all tennis players experience elbow pain, and 75% of them will encounter the dreaded tennis elbow.
Lifting anything becomes impossible.
Making a fist to playfully punch your sibling (they usually ask for it) only hurts yourself.
And raising your hand to wave hello or goodbye is a nonexistent action.
Welcome to tennis elbow.
One of the greatest recovery methods for this injury is physical therapy, but if you’re experiencing the pain and don’t want to visit the doctor, you’re in luck; there are many tennis elbow exercises you can do from the comfort of your home.
You may even be able to practice several at work. Ready to recover?
Try out these exercises.
Five Tennis Elbow Exercises
Keep in mind that before undergoing any sort of physical therapy, it’s important that you wait until any inflammation subsides. Otherwise, you may be doing more harm than good.
Another general rule of thumb is to save the harder exercises for the latter part of your recovery. Start with the easy stretches, then work your way to the harder stuff.
If you’ve recently had any hand surgery, don’t panic; your recovery therapist will guide you through exercises, but you should be able to move your wrist with only mild discomfort after three weeks.
1. Wrist Flexor
This is a gentle exercise that will stretch your flexor muscles and strengthen the extensor ones. Both of these muscles pull the tendons attached to the wrist and hand, allowing you to move your wrist.
Stand comfortably and place your palms together in front of you. Next, point your fingers (with the palms still together) in front of you.
Carefully move your hands closer to your chest while you press your palms together.
Hold this pose for about 30 seconds while taking deep, relaxing breaths. Do this three to five times daily.
2. Wrist Extension
Stand with your right side facing the wall. Next, place the back of your right hand against the wall. Press into it gently.
You should feel a stretch up your forearm.
This exercise strengthens the flexor muscles and stretches the extensor ones.
3. Finger Extension
A common pain associated with tennis elbow is discomfort when the middle finger is extended. This exercise may relieve some of that discomfort as the muscles in the fingers strengthen.
Find a strong rubber band that will fit snugly around your fingers.
Place the rubber band over your knuckles, then stretch your fingers against the band’s resistance for three to five seconds. Finally, slowly relax the fingers until they return to their starting position.
Try for about 50 repetitions and slowly do more as you recover.
4. Fist Clench
Make a fist and place the thumb around the outside of your fingers. Hold this for about five seconds.
Next, release the fist and spread your fingers wide, as if you’re going to give a huge high-five.
Repeat this several times.
5. Towel Twist
Using a flexible bar or a towel, this exercise (also called the “Tyler Twist”) has been proven to help in recovery.
Take the bar or towel and hold it at arm’s length in front of you with your hands on each end. Twist the item as if you are wringing out water.
You can do the same thing with the bar or towel tucked close to your chest in a vertical position.
Unfortunately, sometimes tennis elbow exercises are not enough for a full recovery. For those times, we’re here to heal!
Contact us today for general inquiries or to schedule an appointment.