There’s nothing more frustrating than a chronic injury at bootcamp that won’t seem to heal. Elbow pain is one such injury that just seems to never want to heal.
Sometimes, it is referred to as, golfer’s elbow, tennis elbow, hot elbow, or epicondylitis. The point being, everything ending in -itis means inflammation. The area is suffering from inflammation for a reason, and we need to find the source of the irritation. And unless, you have a direct blow or tear of the muscles or ligaments to the area (say from doing something like flipping a tire that was too heavy for you)… the issue has been caused by a lack of range of motion by a joint below it in the kinetic chain.
What’s the kinetic chain you ask???
It’s the major joints of the body that cause movement. If you imagine yourself standing with your hands in the air, it goes like this.
- Elbow joint – needs to be stable
- Shoulder joint – needs to be stable and flexible
- Upper back vertebrae -needs to be flexible
- Lower back vertebrae – needs to be stable
- Hip joint – needs to be flexible
- Knee joint – needs to be stable
- Ankle joint – needs be flexible
Notice how the joints alternate in the body’s basic need! Now picture it:
Read this post and you’ll get a great idea of why overcompensation of our joints is huge to know with injuries:
Essentially what I am saying is your elbow pain is being caused by another location in your body.
And this post here explains why your elbow may hurt and how to fix:
Nerves extends from base of neck, through shoulder, down to elbow
To sum up the article, that tinging elbow pain, is being aggravated by limited range of motion in the upper back and neck. Tightness in the neck will lead to nerve impingement as it travels from the spine to the elbow, which essentially means there is now less space for the nerve to travel down to the elbow. Now the signal from the spinal cord is flickering and thus agitating the muscle and tendon in the elbow joint.
Looking something like this:
What you can do to get some immediate relief from the inflammation is focus on flexibility in the upper back and spine, get your chest flexible, and start taking omega 3 fish oils (which are anti-inflammatory) I would suggest taking 5g/day for 2 weeks.
In my experience, everything can be fixed by increasing mobility and restoring it to normal. I have dealt with many injuries over the last 5 years, and everyone one of them has been improved by improving mobility. (I can even notice issues on a daily basis if I neglect stretching). Just doing a few extra stretches before and after bootcamp will do you the world of good!!!!
Josh Saunders. BSc, CSCS
The Bootcamp Effect