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Tennis Elbow Costa Mesa

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tennis-elbowTennis elbow anyone? Patients often come in to see me complaining of tennis elbow. There are several easy things to look for regarding your racquet that may be contributing to your elbow pain. I must first point out that being out of position to hit the ball is one of the most common reasons people develop tennis elbow in the first place. This will be the topic of a future post. Read on to learn the simple steps you can take to give yourself the best chance of preventing tennis elbow and or treating it in the early stages.

 

Racket Selection Consideration for the Athlete With Tennis Elbowtennis racket

Selecting a racket with a proper grip size may play the biggest role in preventing tennis elbow. Proper grip size allows for better control of the racket and puts the forearm muscles in the most efficient, least stressful, position. As one wraps their fingers around a properly sized grip, a finger's width (approximately 1/2" to 3/4") should separate the tip of the middle finger and the base of the thumb.

Racket size and weight are other considerations. Oversized rackets have a larger hitting area and cause fewer off-center hits. They are also heavier and harder to swing than lighter, mid-sized rackets. The size and weight of the racket should be determined by the size and strength of the player.

Racket tension is also important. Rackets strung too tightly do not adequately absorb the shock caused by hitting the ball. String tension 2-3 pounds lower than manufacturer recommendations help decrease shock from hitting the ball. For most players, mid-level string tension seems best for providing adequate power, while still having good shock absorption.

To reduce the racket forces if you already have tennis elbow, consider a more loosely strung racket, but avoid a larger head because this will increase the torque on the elbow. Also consider the weight of the racket frame. Make sure you are not using a heavy racket head frame.

If these simple equipment modifications, do not solve your elbow pain, then it is possible that that the condition is too far advanced and needs attention from a sports medicine professional skilled at treating tennis elbow. We employ several soft tissue techniques as well as cold laser and acupuncture to treat tennis elbow. Once the pain is resolved, we work to correct the biomechanics of the arm, core and trunk to prevent the injury from recurring. 

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