/ Golfer's elbow (again)

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SenzuBean - on 30 Sep 2017
So I've had niggling pain in my right elbow (and a tiny sporadic amount in the left), very slight and ignorable in practice unless doing pullups or hanging. It's been there some time. I've done my best to rehab it and take care of it, but it didn't improve drastically.
The main things I was doing was stretching the hand by bending at the wrist (both palm down and palm up), and the exercises from here: https://www.ukclimbing.com/articles/page.php?id=3614

But just now I had a breakthrough - instead of having my arm bent, as in the video, I extended it fully (which required a hand almost in the middle of the stick), putting my knee out further halfway up the forearm, and did the exercise. After 5 repetitions my elbow was drastically better almost to the point of almost no pain at all. Very exciting. Has anyone else had something similar with a niggling pain that was suddenly better? Also has anyone any advice on 'golfer's elbow' rehard exercises possible while walking?
JR - on 30 Sep 2017
mark s - on 30 Sep 2017
In reply to SenzuBean:

I've pretty much hardly ever climbed for over 6 years.ive been lifting weights at least 5 times a week and some very heavy weights. I've had no elbow issues.
I've climbed 4 days on the trot as I want to get back into it. My old climbing pain in the elbow is back already.
ecotom - on 30 Sep 2017
In reply to SenzuBean:

I had pretty bad golfer's elbow a few years ago (I couldn't do any climbing that put significant weight on your arms) and tried the idea in the video without much success. I also tried the slightly dubious looking rubber bar from theraband and all sorts of stretching, again without much success. Then I tried doing press-ups with elbows tight to my sides and within about a fortnight I had reduced the pain to almost nothing. From reading Dave Macleod's book it seems that a lot of tendons join the bone at the elbow and you may have only injured one of them. So you need to find the stretch/exercise that targets that particular tendon i.e. Other exercises may stretch some tendons but leave the injured one unused. Hence why everybody who has suffered seems to have a different "cure". Dave Macleod's book explains it better than me!
Rock to Fakey - on 01 Oct 2017
In reply to SenzuBean:
I don't have this problem, but i couldn't quite understand your description of your variation of Bart's method. Would be good to see a vid or link to one of yr variation too.

In your variation, you are sitting, with your legs bent forming a right angle at the knees, + would you say your straightened arm is now sloping down from your shoulder in a line to the floor at an angle of about 45°, but the arm doing the exercise is supported by the same sides knee, positioned around middle of forearm, palm facing up?
Why do you say putting yr knee further out, it doesn't seem necessary?
Just wondering why you now need to go to the middle of yr broomstick length,.. was that because the weight used was feeling too heavy?
Post edited at 11:04
Rock to Fakey - on 01 Oct 2017
In reply to JR:

The link to the rock + ice article in yr blog doesn't work?
lorentz - on 02 Oct 2017
In reply to SenzuBean:
Yeah. I've found adjusting the angle of the elbow whilst doing the tennis/golf elbow eccentric stretching exercises as prescribed by Dave MacLeod to make a massive difference to my rehab. Also adjusting elbow angle when using the armaid which has helped a lot with the rehabilitation. The twinges still come and go (depending a lot on how much climbing/manual lifting/gym/diy is going on in my life!) but are manageable now.

Wish Make or Break was around in 2012 when I had a terrible bout of tennis elbow and subsequent successful surgery. Literally transformed my approach to climbing/bouldering and rehab etc as I'm heading reluctantly into middle age. Good luck with your elbows... I Feel your pain, but also your eureka moment!
Post edited at 15:05
Stone Idle - on 03 Oct 2017
In reply to SenzuBean:

Make sure it is Golfers elbow. I thought I had same for years and went through a range of bad and rad treatments . I then came across Trigger Point Therapy. Not for everyone but I'm pain free.
ChrisBrooke - on 04 Oct 2017
In reply to mark s:

That's really rubbish. Sorry to hear that. It must be pretty depressing after all those years off.

I noticed this thread while looking at my phone with an ice pack on my right elbow. Always nice to see some collated advice/links etc. Good luck to all suffering with this. It's grim, painful and upsetting.
SenzuBean - on 04 Oct 2017
In reply to Rock to Fakey:

> In your variation, you are sitting, with your legs bent forming a right angle at the knees, + would you say your straightened arm is now sloping down from your shoulder in a line to the floor at an angle of about 45°, but the arm doing the exercise is supported by the same sides knee, positioned around middle of forearm, palm facing up?

Yes that's correct. The only major change to the video is the elbow angle of the affected arm.

> Why do you say putting yr knee further out, it doesn't seem necessary?

Yeah ignore that - not sure what I was thinking.

> Just wondering why you now need to go to the middle of yr broomstick length,.. was that because the weight used was feeling too heavy?

Yes.
SenzuBean - on 04 Oct 2017
In reply to Stone Idle:

> Make sure it is Golfers elbow. I thought I had same for years and went through a range of bad and rad treatments . I then came across Trigger Point Therapy. Not for everyone but I'm pain free.

I'm pretty certain it's golfer's elbow. I have all the classic symptoms, and I'm a desk worker too (apparently heavy desk work with a bad posture can be enough alone). I'm not pain free, but much closer to it than ever
cb294 - on 04 Oct 2017
In reply to mark s:

Medial epicondylitis usually comes from overgripping (which is why it is a common injury in judo). Usually goes away if I have to take a fistful of Diclofenac for my knees......

BC
Davib - on 11 Oct 2017
In reply to SenzuBean:

I had this problem (or so i thought...) about this time last year. I posted a similar request and got loads of advice, the thread has been archived now but can be found here: https://www.ukclimbing.com/forums/t.php?n=655363 - loads of useful advice and links.

BUT

I can't stress this enough. Go to a physio - preferably one who works with climbers.

I had self diagnosed this being a problem of the medial epicondyle and was managing to relieve the symptoms through some web-learned exercises, but would never have cured the problem had I not gone to a physio.

The reason being, the vast majority of self-diagnosed elbow / medial epicondyle problems end up being neurological (you've annoyed a nerve). Although your tendon will have some damage, the nerve is a contributing factor. In golfer's elbow it's normally the medial or ulnar nerve that is playing up. What causes this is different for everyone. For me it turned out that a weak & wonky scapula was the original cause, hence why just before i went to a physio i was getting pain in my neck as well as my elbow.

I'll lay out what worked for me below, but please go to a climbing physio (if you haven't already) - it will go away quicker if you do.

My routine:

1) Wrist curls: 50 reps* with a 2kg weight - rest your forearm on a bench / sofa arm and perform one set per arm with the arm fully straightened (180 degrees), at 120 degrees, at 90 degrees and at 45ish degrees (full lock position)

2) Wrist twists (a.k.a weight on a stick): 10 reps with a weight that you can complete 4 sets. With golfer's elbow the weight must always turn away from the body. Again do this with the arm at the different angles mentioned above.

-- For both of the above keep your thumb on the same side of the dumbell / stick as your other fingers, can't explain the science but it makes a difference --

3) Powerfingers Bicep curl: get some powerfingers bands, put on a band and extend your fingers fully, then do bicep curls in sets of about 15-20. The first one or two should make the sore bit of your elbow feel stiff, after that it starts to go away.

4) Nerve "flossing" exercises. This will depend on the cause of your injury, but once my physio found the exercise specific to me I did it whenever I had a spare moment and it cleared up the pain in my neck & elbow. Watch some ulnar and medial nerve flossing or "gliding" videos and try out some of the exercises - but you'll probably need a physio to find the right one.

*Any physio's or medical people out there please correct me if i've misunderstood or used appalling layman's terms. I was advised to keep a high rep rate for this exercise as once a tendon is damaged, the body sends collagen to fix it, when it needs a lot this can be "bad collagen" that will not fix the tendon in the way we're hoping. If you don't use the tendon the collagen will sit there until we use it again and cause the same problem to occur. Doing multiple wrist curls without too much stress (weight) allows the tendon to re-learn the action we want it to perform and allows "good collagen" to go there, thus getting the result we want. I mention this as i've seen conflicting advice on whether to use a high / low rep rate & weight combo.
La benya - on 11 Oct 2017
In reply to Davib:

Massive +1 for nerve flossing. Was the key for me (although I managed to self diagnose after reading something from the other channel).

Also use it for my tight hammies.
Dandan82 - on 11 Oct 2017
In reply to SenzuBean:

I was reminded of this today: https://tomrandallclimbing.wordpress.com/2012/11/23/golfers-elbow-a-possible-solution/
Tom's miracle, yoga-based stretch seems to have a lot of anecdotal success in the comments. I'm in Golfer's elbow hell at the moment so i'm going to try it out for a couple of weeks, see if it can be a miracle cure for me too.

For full disclosure I am also off to see a very experienced physio tomorrow, and his advice will supersede any of my own plans...
maxsmith - on 11 Oct 2017
In reply to Dandan82:

Although Tom describes that as a stretch in his blog, I believe it is a nerve glide. I am in tennis elbow woe so no use to me sadly!
SenzuBean - on 12 Oct 2017
In reply to Dandan82:

Ah thanks. I do remember seeing that ages ago and never getting round to trying it.

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