There are a lot of books that focus on tennis elbow exercises on the internet. How will you know which ones are real and which ones are just out for your money?
How will you be able to evaluate tennis elbow exercises, and decide whether or not they are tennis elbow exercises you should avoid?
Let’s Start With Tennis Elbow Anatomy
To learn what types of exercises you don’t want to do, you have to understand what tennis elbow is and what’s going on in your shoulder, arm, elbow, forearm, wrist and hand.
This is actually quite simple.
Your elbow joint is somewhat complicated if you were to dissect it, but by looking down at your elbow right now, you’ll see a crease marking the skin between your arm and forearm in the front of your elbow. Find it?
The part of your elbow closest to the body is called the medial elbow. One good way to remember it is to think that it’s closest to “me”.
The opposite part of your elbow is the outside of the elbow, or the lateral elbow.
Why Tennis Elbow Has Another Name
Tennis elbow is also called lateral epicondylitis. Usually the disorder starts out with just the tendons inside the elbow joint becoming inflamed. But the longer the tendons are inflamed, the more the inflammation spreads to involve the muscle and the joint itself.
The name “lateral epicondylitis” gives you an idea that the disorder involves the part of the elbow that is lateral. If you thought that, you are correct. This area is where some muscles originate, and it’s the ones that are associated with tennis elbow are troublesome.
What Muscles Are Involved In Tennis Elbow
The muscles that originate here are responsible for extending your wrist, extending your fingers and for gripping objects.
If you stroke your arm from the lateral elbow area all the way down to your wrist, you’ll feel a meaty muscle towards your lateral elbow that thins out towards the wrist. This is the primary muscle affected during tennis elbow.
It’s called the extensor carpi radialis muscle. There are other extensor muscles in the same area.
These muscles aren’t strengthened very often in exercise programs. When you go to the health club, you’ll never see a weight machine that is very specific for wrist extensors and finger extensors!
By strengthening these muscles, you can start to decrease the pain of tennis elbow. To strengthen these muscles you would simply close your hand tightly around a ball, open your fingers wide and move the open fingers toward the outside of the body.
When health practitioners give you a rehabilitation plan for tennis elbow, you get exercises that make you extend your fingers and wrist. Sometimes the exercises will be ones that ask you to turn your hand from a palm down to palm up position, and back again.
Tennis Elbow Exercises To Avoid
Any exercises that don’t focus on extending your wrist and fingers would not help you eliminate tennis elbow pain or put tennis elbow in your past.
Thus, if someone tells you to move your right upper arm across your chest to grab your left shoulder, you know that this wouldn’t help your tennis elbow at all.
Here are some additional exercises that really won’t help you at all:
1. With your arms at your side, press your elbows behind your back as far as they will go. Return to the original position. Repeat.
2. Extend your arms out to the side, palms upward, and bring your hands to the elbows, then back to the extended out position.
3. Clasp your arms behind your neck, then lean backwards in a stretch. Repeat.
4. Touch your elbows together in front of your body. Hold them there while a friend or family member tries to pull them apart.
5. Sit calmly in a chair. Shrug one shoulder, then another. Repeat several times.
As you are doing some of these exercises, you may find that they create a little pain. This pain is simply from movement, not from stressing or strengthening the extensor muscles that are important in tennis elbow.
Why These Exercises Won’t Create Tennis Elbow Relief
Did you see how some of the exercises focus more on the shoulder, not the elbow? If an exercise doesn’t focus on the right body part, you won’t feel any relief of pain from the exercise.
You could repeat the exercises until doomsday and still, no relief would be in sight. It would be in the category of tennis elbow exercises to avoid.
For more insight on which types of exercise to do to improve tennis elbow and eventually get tennis elbow relief, get the ebook, Tennis Elbow Secrets Revealed.
This ebook will make a lot of sense to you now that you know the information presented in this article!