The elbow is a hinge joint that opens and closes like a door, and also rotates like a screwdriver. It is frequently injured in sports and other activities that place a lot of repetitive stress on the arm. The elbow is dependent on proper shoulder function as it shares the same long bone, which explains why shoulder and elbow pain can be related. Chronic elbow pain can be disabling and can be caused by bursitis, arthritis or a trapped nerve. Chronic elbow tendonitis occurs from chronically inflamed tendons controlling the elbow joint. Two types of elbow tendinitis are common in athletes, artists, and anyone who uses their arm a lot.
Tennis elbow occurs when the large tendons that attach to the outside of the elbow from the forearm become inflamed. Not just tennis players experience this annoying problem, but anyone who repeatedly uses their arm with a grip. Golfer’s elbow occurs when the large tendons that attach to the inside of the elbow from the forearm become inflamed. Baseball players can also develop tendinitis inside the elbow, usually from repeatedly throwing a ball (pitching) or long practices.
When addressing chronic elbow pain treatment consider:
- The shoulder and elbow both share the long bone of the arm so that any deviation of shoulder function will affect the elbow.
- The shoulder and elbow have to relate well to one another as well as the rest of the body to prevent excessive strain and pain in the elbow.
- Pain relief is the result of optimizing the function of the elbow. The system should be addressed as a whole and therapy involve the whole body, restoring the relationship of the elbow with the rest of the body.
Once injured, elbow pain can become chronic, and treatment will likely be necessary. Treatment is the result of improving key relationships within the arm, and optimizing the function of the elbow as it relates to the rest of the upper body. You should receive therapy that involves the whole body, including exercises, the goals being to relieve pain and prevent your elbow from being re-injured.
If you’ve rested enough or if physical therapy has not worked for you, the Feldenkrais Method can be used to treat all problems for which surgery isn’t necessary. Feldenkrais uses simple, gentle movements to reorganize posture, flexibility, strength and coordination. Based on the neurological processes by which we learn movement skills, it is a novel approach to elbow pain, harnessing the power of the brain to help the body function more efficiently. More efficient use of self creates environments within which chronic pain can heal, quickly and easily. Feldenkrais helps you to have fun again doing all those things for which your elbow now holds you back; discover what it can do for you.