August 18, 2023

7 Essential Stretches for Golfer’s Elbow Relief

7 Essential Stretches for Golfer’s Elbow Relief

As its name suggests, golfer’s elbow is a common affliction among golf players. But you don’t have to hit the links to suffer from this inflammation of the tendons that connect your forearm to your elbow. Any repetitive clenching or throwing activity can leave you with pain radiating through your forearm, elbow, and even wrist. If you suffer from golfer’s elbow, the good news is that you don’t have to stop your favorite sport (At least for the long term). There are some stretches that you can do to relieve the pain. Here are 7 of them.

Bald man touching painful elbow and trying to massage it before physical exercise while sitting on medical couch in clinics and waiting for doctor

Wrist Flexor Stretch

The wrist flexor stretch is intended to ease tension in your wrist and arm. A simple exercise, it can be completed in just a few minutes a day. Here is how you can complete this exercise:

  1. Stretch the sore arm in front of you.
  2. Hold your hand out, palm facing away from you.
  3. Take your other hand and grasp the affected hand firmly.
  4. Gently pull the affected hand toward you until the wrist bends and you feel the stretch.
  5. Hold the stretch for 15-30 seconds
  6. Repeat 2 to 4 times

You can complete this exercise by yourself, or you can enlist the help of a physical therapist or sports medicine practitioner, who will do the stretching of your wrist for you.

Man stretching his right hand in the gym. Workout preparation warm-up concept.

Wrist Flexor Stretch Reversed

Want to stretch and relax your wrist in both directions? You can reverse the wrist flexor stretch by doing the wrist extensor stretch. Here is how it works:

  1. Stretch the sore arm in front of you.
  2. Hold your hand out, fingers facing up.
  3. Take your other hand and gently pull the fingers back.
  4. Pull until the wrist bends backward and you feel a stretch.
  5. Hold the stretch for 15-30 seconds
  6. Repeat 2-4 times.

These exercises will help the muscles that connect from the elbow to the wrist, and that become inflamed during golfer’s elbow, to become more flexible so you can move with less pain.

Wrist Extensor Stretch

The wrist extensor stretch may seem similar to the wrist flexor stretches discussed above. However, the mechanics involved actually help to work your wrist in different ways to ensure greater flexibility throughout the wrist – And relief of your golfer’s elbow symptoms. Here is how to complete it:

  1. Stretch your affected arm in front of you.
  2. Make a fist with your palm facing down.
  3. Bend your wrist so your fist points at the floor.
  4. Take your other hand and grasp your fist.
  5. Gently bend your first further toward the floor.
  6. Stop when you feel a stretch.
  7. Hold for 15-30 seconds.
  8. Repeat up to 4 times.

These three initial exercises may be completed together. They only take a few moments and help to deliver healing range of motion to your wrist through to your elbow so you can begin to experience a relief of symptoms.

Forearm Extensor Stretch

The forearm extensor stretch has a similar goal to the wrist flexor and extensor stretches: To deliver flexibility to the parts of the forearm affected by the inflamed tendons in the elbow. Here is how to complete this stretch at home in just a few minutes a day:

  1. Bend your affected elbow at a 90-degree angle at your side.
  2. Make a fist palm-down.
  3. Bend your wrist down.
  4. Keep your wrist bent while you straighten your elbow. Stop when your arm is hanging at your side.
  5. Turn your palm to the side until you feel a stretch.
  6. Hold for 15-30 seconds
  7. Repeat 2-4 times.

Gorgeous brunette lifting some weights and working on her biceps in a gym

Wrist Curls

Wrist curls work well as a preventive treatment for golfer’s elbow. Once you feel less pain, or if you want to avoid developing golfer’s elbow in the first place, you could try this exercise. It works by strengthening the forearm muscles, thereby preventing overuse injuries that lead to golfer’s elbow. Here is how you complete the wrist curl:

  1. Place your forearm on a flat, firm surface, palm up.
  2. Let your palm relax over the edge of the surface.
  3. Place a 1-2 pound weight in your hand.
  4. Raise and lower the weight without taking your forearm off the table.
  5. Complete 8-12 repetitions.
  6. You may repeat with your other arm.

Want to simplify this exercise? You do not have to use dumbbells. A can of food or a filled water bottle can also serve as a weight.

Soft Tissue Rolling

This exercise minimizes the amount of actual stretching you do to treat your golfer’s elbow, making it a good place to start if you are experiencing severe irritation and pain from this condition. Instead, it opts for very gentle stretching and stimulation of circulation around the inflamed tissues in order to encourage healing. Here is how it works:

  1. Place a tennis ball on a flat surface.
  2. Place your forearm, palm up or down, on top of the ball.
  3. Roll your forearm along the ball.
  4. Repeat 10-15 times.
  5. You can focus on particularly sore areas.
  6. Flex your wrists as you roll your forearm.

Resisted Supination

Probably the most complex of the 7 exercises listed here, this exercise still only requires an exercise band and a few minutes of your day. Here is how to complete this exercise:

  1. Sit with your legs slightly spread apart.
  2. Place your affected forearm on your leg.
  3. Make sure your wrist and hand are in front of your knee.
  4. Grab one end of the exercise band with your affected hand.
  5. Step on the other end of the band.
  6. Roll your palm outward, but keep your wrist straight.
  7. Count 2.
  8. Roll your palm back and count 5.
  9. Repeat 8-12 times.

If golfer’s elbow stretches do not deliver the relief you require,  you may need to consult with an experienced sports medicine practitioner. At Dynamic Sports Medicine, we make athlete-trusted care available to everyone, so you can overcome golfer’s elbow, and anything else that afflicts you. Let our Austin sports chiropractor help you get the healing you deserve!

Dr. Matt Lowe

Dr. Matt Lowe’s extensive knowledge of the human body, combined with his experience as a world-class athlete, allows him to provide his patients with the most advanced and integrative approach to treating injuries and improving sports performance. Throughout his chiropractic career, he has treated active individuals as well as professional athletes from the NFL, NBA, PGA, NCAA and the U.S. Olympic Team.

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