What is Tennis Elbow and Can you play with it?

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The thing all tennis players or sportsmen always wish for is to be healthy. Not to feel any pain and to be able to play their sport the best way they can. One of the most annoying things is to buy high-quality tennis racquet and get injured. It feels like a waste of money when you can’t play with your investment. 

All athletes want to play and play at the best level possible, but injuries are something that often happens without warning, and players simply do not see them coming. Unfortunately, most athletes, in all kinds of sports, even those who are the best in the world, sometimes or even a lot of times, felt some pain which didn’t let them play the way they wanted to.

 

Arms and legs are always parts of the body that are the most exposed to injuries. And yet, they are parts all of the athletes pray to be always strong and healthy. In tennis, the sport which requires tremendous energy and great strength, both arms and legs, are crucial for a good game and a good athlete. But, if something happens to some of those parts, tennis players can easily lose their shape.  A lot of the best players lost their ATP/WTA rankings and had to go to retirement when they had injuries that kept them from coming back at full strength. Chronic pain is something that medicine still cannot fully explain, but it is happening to people around the world, including men and women in sports, or maybe they are the ones that are the most frequently affected.

One of the injuries that are common in the tennis world is called tennis elbow. This article will review tennis elbow is and what are some of your options to keep playing. 

Definition

Tennis elbow is a very painful condition that is usually caused by using many muscles in your elbow. This is why most people go to see their doctors when they feel pain in the elbow. The pain can be felt in the whole arm and, despite its name that suggests specific sport; people who do not play tennis can also get it. It can be caused mostly by using your arms a lot during some activities such as typing, gardening, painting, carpentry, etc. People around the age of 40 are the most likely to get this injury, but it can affect humans at any age. 

During the last few years, as the racquet technology is more advanced these days and the tennis technique is improved, tennis elbow can be prevented easily. However, tennis elbow is still a common issue.

The scientific word for tennis elbow is lateral epicondylitis. It can be painful and not fun to have, it’s condition that occurs when tendons in your elbow are overloaded, usually by repetitive motions of the wrist and arm. 

As you may have guessed, this is common in tennis players because of all the motion with your arm and wrist. 

Is it hard to play tennis with tennis elbow?

Yes, of course, it is. Like with any other type of injury, it can be very painful, and the best thing you can do is stop playing for a while. That way, your injury will heal quite sooner. But, on the other hand, there is no guarantee that a ligament (or a tendon) will heal completely, even if you choose to rest from all activities, including playing tennis. The good news is that you can keep playing tennis while you have a tennis elbow. It is not the smartest thing to do, of course, but you can choose that option if your injury is not quite bad. 

If you choose to continue playing tennis, you should know that, if the injury is severe, you will feel a lot of pain. The pain can be caused while you are doing some normal, ordinary things, such as driving around or just walking, so imagine how painful it will be to practice and play the game – especially if the injury affected your dominant arm that you use to play and hold the racket. To prevent injury from becoming worse, you should always warm up well first. Take your time and do some stretching before each game. Do not play for a long time, shorten your practice period, and try not to play every single day. Those are some of the advice you should consider. And, not to forget, but the ice on the painful place will cool down, and the pain will go away for some time. 

If you eventually recover from your tennis elbow or if you have a mild case, and you want to keep playing, then you should consider a racquet designed for tennis elbow. These racquets help put less stress on your joints. If you already have a racquet, you can re-string your racquet with strings that put less stress on your elbows. 

What to do if you think you have tennis elbow?

If you think you have tennis elbow, you should visit your doctor. It is good to know that it can be healed on its own. Of course, if the injury is not bad. The best thing to do is to give your elbow a break. Let it rest and heal slowly. Ice the painful spot to prevent the pain and swelling. You can also use the elbow strap to prevent further strain. Medications you can use are those that are no steroidal, such as aspirin or ibuprofen. But it would help if you were careful with those drugs, as they can cause bleeding and have some other side effects. The best thing is always to visit your doctor and listen to his/her medical plan for healing.

If you do what your doctor says and take those treatments, they will help you for sure. But, if nothing helps you after a few months and the pain is still present, you may have to take physical therapy. 

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