Here we’re going to discuss about some elbow stretches and exercises for lateral epicondylitis and what’s that ? Tennis elbow! So, let’s discuss about it.
Lateral epicondylitis, popularly known as tennis elbow, are the muscles on the outside region of the elbow, the epicondyle, and they come all the way down into the wrist. Those are the extensors of the wrist. A lot of the range of motion exercises are actually put on the wrist, that’s why many of the times there is a pain up there. This pain is referred to as tennis elbow pain. So, we need to do some exercises to relieve the pain. So let’s start off with some exercises.
Elbow Exercises – Flexion/Extension
You can prop your hand up on a table, if you want to, and just let your wrist hang off, or you can also do it in the air. But if that’s uncomfortable, you can just prop it up on your leg. So just to start off with, make a fist with your hand and move it up and down. Just nice, gentle movement, this is just to get the muscles warmed up by a kind of moving them a little bit. When you go down, you’re going to feel that stretch and when you come up you’re working those muscles. So it might be a little bit painful, if it is, don’t feel like you have to go very far, you’re just kind of getting everything loosened up.
Elbow Exercises – Radial and Ulnar Deviation
Once you do about 10 of the above exercise, then go ahead and turn your hand over, and you’re going to do a radial and ulnar deviation. So that’s just going up and down now. So, again not extreme movements. It’s really just to get all those muscles around the wrist and elbow warmed up and getting them loosen up a little bit. Again just start off with about 10 of those.
Elbow Exercises – Supination Pronation
Then you’re going to go into supination pronation movement. You just need to open up your palm, keeping the hand straight, just rotate your palm facing upwards then downwards and back upwards. So keep your elbow by your side and make sure it is forming a 90° angle from your shoulder. And again don’t feel like you have to force it, this is just getting everything nice and loosen up. So about 10 of those as well.
Exercises with Weights
Flexion/Extension with Weights
Then you’re going to take a small little weight. You can use a juice can or vegetable can. And again if you need to prop it upon something, you may go ahead especially since you have a weight. So just hold it up and then go back into the first exercise that is the flexion/extension again. Just go down very slowly and then come back up very slowly. So you’re working those muscles on the outside area there upto that lateral epicondyle. Go nice and slow, don’t let that weight just drop back down.
You can also do this with a resistive band if you want to, but again make sure it’s nice and control while you’re doing it. So just starting off with 10, if you get up to 20 to 25 and it’s super easy then you can go to a little bit heavier weight.
Supination/Pronation with Weights
Moving on to the next one, if you have a hammer or anything that’s a little bit top-heavy, the reason you need to use something that’s slightly top-heavy is that you’re going back into that supination/pronation exercise. It gives that extra little stretch at the elbow. So this is gonna not only be an exercise because you’re continuously moving but it will also give that little bit of overpressure to give you that extra stretch at the end. So depending on how top-heavy your hammer is, you might need to just start off with five of these. If it’s a small hammer, you can go up to 10. But just kind of a continuous back and fourth, if you want to get a little extra stretch, you can hold it there for about three to five seconds and then come back over.
Elbow Exercises – Stretching
Then going into stretching it out, put your arms straight out and use your other hand to pull the palm towards you by bending the wrist. The muscles on the outside get stretched if your wrist goes down. Now if your fingers are straight, that’s not quite as much of a stretch, but if you curl your fingers and make a fist, that will give you more of a stretch. So, then just give a little bit of pressure with the other hand and then hold that for 30seconds and do that three times.
Elbow Exercises – Twisting
Then the last exercise, just take a towel, roll it up, and then you’re just going to do a twisting motion. Just imagine if you are removing excess water from the towel. Just twist the towel up and down to get a little bit of a workout of those muscles. Nice and slow and controlled.
So there you have it, those were your stretches and exercises for lateral epicondylitis. I know it’s tennis elbow !! So be safe, have fun, and I hope you feel better soon.