Thursday, October 01, 2009

How I got Tennis Elbow from a Treadmill

I managed to injure a tendon in my forearm (the "tennis elbow" tendon) while on a treadmill(!). How? Well you put it on max incline and set it just a little faster than you can keep up and hang on to the siderails tightly. Endorphins make sure that you really don't notice that something is being injured until later. Oops.

Then it was: oh let's just rest it a couple of days and it should be fine (it really wasn't) and I have a hiking trip scheduled (where I'm going to make heavy use of Trekking Poles) and I want to do that since I talked someone else into going. So now it's really hurt. Drat.

A few years ago on a different injury, I had a Physical Therapist read me the riot act and I remember it: Tissue takes 6-8 weeks to heal and you have to be patient, and start back gradually. What a favor that was. I looked at the calendar and realized that besides dog walking I was taking Sept off in terms of exercise, because I can't seem to exercise without using my arm that way. The cool and dangerous thing is that it's now Oct and it's starting to hurt less. Dangerous because even though it's hurting less, I could easily reinjure it, and even using it some (like say for ahem: typing) make it unhappy. So I really need to wait till mid October.

A friend who plays tennis posted this link that shows that a very simple exercise using a rubber bar (a Thera-Band Flexibar) is showing to be very effective at helping tennis elbow: I've been trying the exercise that the video details and it does make it feel better. I don't use a rubber bar but just a towel rolled up.

But rereading the article shows that actually having the rubber bar will make a different and it's under $20 so I've ordered it via Amazon. In the video they were using the Red "light" version, so that's the one I chose:

They were doing 3 sets of 15 repetitions a day, but started out with 3 sets of 5 repetitions.
[update 10/8
It came in and the exercise detailed was in a handout in the box.
I'm now dutifully doing the exercises.]

This is killing me some as there's a trip I want to do in Yosemite off Tioga Road before it closes for the winter. Historically it closes in Nov (see:, but it could close as early as mid October. Sigh. Patience Patience Patience.

Of course since I've been off for a month I'll be out of shape but I really have no real goals besides maybe checking out the approach to Mt Dana, which means driving to 10,000' and walking around and trying not to fall over.


Jennie said...

(doing my tennis-elbow stretches)

elsa said...
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