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The Tennis Business Discussion Forum Archive

[tennisbiz] Re: tennis elbow

From: Scott Handback <>
Date: Wed 1 May 2002 09:23:27 EDT

     Tennis elbow is caused when a player improperly makes contact with the
ball sending vibrations that are not absorbed by the racquet or stings into
the arm. If the player makes contact at the correct point (between their
center of gravity and the net-ie. out in front), then the muscles in the
forearm, which are now loose due to the kinetic force of acceleration,
usually absorb these vibrations.
     If the contact point is late or behind the center of gravity, then the
muscles of the forearm are tight from both the accerlation process and the
attempt to steady the racquet head from lack of acceleration. Now the
vibrations are absorbed in the tendons surrounding the elbow. This friction
around the large parts of the bone causes inflamation known as tennis elbow.
     If a player were to continuously make contact late and have contracted
foreaem muscles during contact, he/she would have continuous elbow
inflamation. Because professional tennis players make proper contact more
often and tend to use loose racquet head acceleration on those shots they
don't time well, they do not suffer from tennis elbow on the same scale as
recreational players.
     Also, those 'bands' for tennis elbow don't actually get rid of the
inflamation. They mask the pain by applying pressure to nerve pathways and
limiting the motion of the forearm muscle. In some cases, they actually make
the inflammation worse and cause muscle deterioration.

Scott Handback
Tennis Coach, Queens College (NC)
Head Coach, USTA High Performance Center - Charlotte, NC
Received on Wed May 01 2002 - 09:54:21 CDT

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