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Tennis Elbow

Tennis elbow, shooter's elbow, and archer's elbow

Lateral epicondylitis, lateral epicondylalgia or simply lateral elbow pain, is a condition where the outer part of the elbow becomes sore and tender. Since the cause (pathogenesis) of this condition is not recognised, there is no single agreed name. While the common name "tennis elbow" suggests a strong link to racquet sports, this condition can also be caused by sports such as swimming and climbing, repetitive manual work as well as activities of daily living.

Tennis elbow is an overuse injury occurring in the lateral side of the elbow region, but more specifically it occurs at the common extensor tendon that originates from the lateral epicondyle. The acute pain that a person might feel occurs as one fully extends the arm.

Holistically; tennis elbow is a symptom of a life out of balance and probably has a range of influencing factors including nutrition, lifestyle and exercise.

As there is no known cause,  there is no one treatment.  Doctors use analgesia to manage pain according to pain severity and also employ intra-articular corticosteroid injections.

Holistic treatments

  1. Massage - rest and exercise:
    1. A first aide solution is to give/have a full body massage to relax the entire body in order to give the person a more relaxed sense of self.
      • Notes to therapists;
        Take care when massaging near the affected area and do not ignore it.
        Follow the pain and typically there will be areas of stress in the shoulder, upper back and neck as well as the forearms and hands
        Combination of deep tissue/myofascial release and relaxation
        Use hot rubs to help soften the tissues
      • Apply gentle massage including the stretches and shoulder manipulation as far as comfortably possible.
      • Self care massage:
        Massage as feels comfortable - no pain - and it helps to use a hut rub like tiger balm.
  2. Yoga
    1. Yoga stretching helps to break up the scar tissue, but this must be done with caution with guidance from a qualified instructor.
      • the body must be steady in poses and the stretches
      • work both sides of the body evenly
  3. Acupuncture
    1. Acupuncture or acupressure massage plus exercise may achieve improvements.
  4. Rest
    The affected are needs exercising, but it also needs rest which is best achieved through yoga relaxation.


Typically this condition takes months to come right, combine exercise, regular weekly massage with detailed attention to other areas of stress in the body and life.

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