Tennis elbow, technically known as lateral epicondylitis, is a fairly common condition not only for tennis players, but for anyone performing repetitive gripping movements. The muscles that control wrist extension, which form a common muscle tendon at the lateral elbow, become chronically inflamed due to repetitive micro-trauma. In our Beaverton chiropractic clinic, we see cases on a regular basis ranging from mild to debilitating, and have successfully treated all levels of injury. As sports chiropractors, our approach is always non-surgical, and non-pharmacological. Treatments in our Beaverton clinic include Active Release Technique and Graston instrument assisted soft-tissue therapy, both used to break down scar tissue, and increase blood flow to the site of injury, coupled with joint manipulation and exercise therapy. Our mission is to not only treat the injured tissue, but to look beyond the site of injury to uncover muscle imbalances, movements dysfunctions, and joint mobility issues that may be the cause.
Today's video highlights some of our favorite home therapy techniques for the treatment of tennis elbow.
1. Mobility ball release: Most of our patients are familiar with the mobility ball, as it is a staple in our Beaverton clinic. It's a big part of our home care plan, and is extremely useful for self-myofascial release from head to toe. In the video, I demonstrate release of the wrist extensor muscles with active wrist flexion and extension. Release the muscle for 60-90 seconds with as much ball pressure as you can tolerate:)
2. Flex bar strengthening: This is a great way to train both the wrist flexors and extensors in a combined movement. It does necessitate purchasing some type of flex bar, but it is well worth the investment and can be used for training a variety of body movements. I recommend starting with 2 sets of 20 (this will give you 10 reps of flexion and extension on each side per set) per day.
3. Ulnar nerve flossing: This is a great exercise/drill for relieving tingling in the 4th and 5th digits often stemming from sleeping with the elbow fully flexed. Perform 25 reps of the full movement, 2-3 times per day.
Enjoy the video!
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