What is Tennis Elbow?

Essentially, tennis elbow is a painful dysfunction of a group of tendons in your forearm that originate on the lateral aspect (outside) of your elbow. This may affect one or many of these tendons, the tendon(s) may or may not have a tear or degeneration, they may or may not have swelling. Regardless of these prevailing features, invariably these tendons are not tolerating some of your day to day tasks. Lateral elbow tendinopathy is a more accurate medical term that describes what is happening.

Tennis Elbow Symptoms

  • Pain around your lateral elbow, that may radiate into the muscles of your forearm.
  • Pain is often aggravated by simple tasks such as gripping like in a handshake, or by lifting/picking up an object like your kettle, or turning taps on/off.
  • Associated pain higher up in your shoulder or neck; or pain further down in your wrist or fingers;
  • Tenderness to touch your lateral elbow.
  • Weakness associated with the above painful tasks.
  • Or neural symptoms such as pins and needles or numbness may indicate an additional contribution from other sources such as your neck/back or an altogether different condition.

Causes of Tennis Elbow

Tendinopathies are commonly a load management issue, whereby the tendons are not coping with the amount of load they are experiencing over a period of time, or from a single bout of activity.

Causes are often related to a recent change to the load that your elbow is experiencing.

This change in load can be a result of various factors including:

A change in how much you are doing such as:

  • Completing a new or unusual activity like gardening or moving house;
  • A new job, or longer hours at work;
  • Increase training hours
  • A new desk set up at work
  • A new tennis racquet, or other sports equipment
  • Changes in technique

Tennis Elbow Assessment

Tennis Elbow can be unique to each individual patient. To assess a Tennis Elbow complaint your PEAK Practitioner will go through a thorough subjective history to understand exactly how Tennis Elbow is affecting you, what tasks you are finding challenging and what we need to be modifying. This will include understanding your goals to ensure we set you up for success with the experiences that are most important to you.

There will be an assessment of your range of motion, strength, flexibility and function of the muscles, tendons and joints about your elbow.

It is also important that we understand all of the contributing factors to rule out differential diagnoses. This typically includes a postural assessment and thorough assessment of the range of motion, strength, flexibility and function of the joints above and below your wrist, shoulder, neck and back.

Tennis Elbow Treatment

Education, as with any condition, is an essential part of treatment. It allows you to understand the condition, what is causing it, what to and what not to do.

Exercise based rehab is important to improve the strength, flexibility, movement quality of all those factors identified as contributing factors. It is also necessary to use exercise as a means for increasing the capacity of the tendons.

Often complete rest can reduce pain in the short term for this condition. Complete rest however, simultaneously reduces the capacity of the tendon for handling loads. Which typically results in an immediate recurrence of pain on the resumption of normal activities. Therefore load management and/or relative rest is a super important concept to aid recovery of this condition. Tendons like to be exercised, they like to be loaded, and that is what helps them positively adapt into more robust tendons however too much is likely to increase your pain. Your PEAK Practitioner will work with you to find the perfect balance between work/exercise and rest so that your tendons can increase their capacity, but not worsen your pain.

Other treatment modalities that can be used in conjunction with education and exercise, can include: joint mobilisations, active release techniques, neurodynamics, taping, Dry Needling and massage.

Physio for Tennis Elbow

Your PEAK Physiotherapist will educate you on the nature of this condition and what are the most relevant considerations for your complaint. They will ensure you understand the important dos and don’ts with your condition and provide load management advice to ensure you avoid aggravating your condition..
Your PEAK Physio will provide you with a comprehensive exercise program to address any areas of weakness, tightness, etc that you need to be addressed.
They will also assist with joint mobilisations, active release techniques, neurodynamics, taping and Dry Needling to help speed up your rehab process.

Dry Needling for Tennis Elbow

Dry needling has been shown to be helpful in the short term for a reduction in pain in Tennis Elbow. PEAK Physiotherapists, Chiropractors and Massage Therapists are all trained in Dry Needling.

Exercise and Prevention Class for Tennis Elbow

Exercise based rehab is a frontline treatment for tennis elbow. PEAK coaches run small group exercise classes throughout each day that we call Prevention Classes. Prevention Classes are an effective way for you to work with you PEAK Practitioner to address all of your contributing factors with a comprehensive guided exercise program, in a welcoming, social and interactive environment.

Chiro for Tennis Elbow

Posture, neck and back issues are often important contributing factors in tennis elbow, which PEAK’s Chiropractors can assess and treat.

Massage for Tennis Elbow

Soft tissue massage and Dry Needling can be very helpful adjuncts to treatment, therefore PEAK’s Massage Therapists are an important part of PEAK’s treating team for this condition.

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Our locations

Hawthorne

PEAK Hawthorne opened in 2012 and was extended and renovated in 2020. You see the same team whether we see you at Hawthorne or one of our other clinics.  Hawthorne offers private treatment rooms and a spacious exercise area incorporating the latest equipment and technology, unrestricted single level access and off-street parking. We also provide HICAPS for real-time private health claiming.

Our locations

New Farm

PEAK New Farm opened in August 2019. You see the same team whether we see you at New Farm or one of our other clinics. New Farm offers private treatment rooms and a spacious exercise area incorporating the latest equipment and technology, unrestricted single level access and off-street parking. We also provide HICAPS for real-time private health claiming.

Hawthorne

Address
5/171 Riding Road,
Hawthorne, QLD, 4171
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Opening Hours -
6 days per week
  • Monday - Friday: 6:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Saturday: 6:00 am - 2:00 pm

To make a booking outside of business hours, please use our form by clicking here.

New Farm

Address
1/15 Lamington Street,
New Farm, QLD, 4005
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Opening Hours -
6 days per week
  • Monday - Thursday: 2:00 pm - 8:00 pm
  • Friday - Saturday: 7:00 am - 1:00 pm

To make a booking outside of business hours, please use our form by clicking here.