“ Tendulkar! Tendulkar!” cheered the spectators in enthusiasm. It was for the first time, that the batting legend Sachin Tendulkar was back on the field post his tennis elbow surgery. The thought of giving up the sport for the good had crossed Tendulkar’s mind as he tried to get back on the field after the surgery. It took him four and a half month to recover and even the doctors were skeptical that he could play at competitive cricket at all. Thinking of the bad phase the Master Blaster said, “I could not even lift my son Arjun’s plastic bat. Kids aged 10-12 years had come to the ground for fielding the day I went to bat for the first time against a leather ball.” “I hit the balls hard but the kids were able to stop them within 10-15 yards. I thought I cannot play anymore,” he further added. But fate had something else stored for him. He was back. The cricketer who was referred to as the God of Cricket was back on field.

What was reason behind the agony of the God of cricket? It was tennis elbow. Yes you heard that right! You might be wondering what tennis elbow is doing in cricket. But let me tell you that tennis elbow is not caused by playing tennis alone. It may also result from squash, fencing, weight lifting, carpentry, knitting or painting. It is actually caused by non-inflammatory, chronic degenerative changes in the tendon that attaches the forearm muscle to the elbow. Also known as lateral epicondylitis, it is a condition in which the outer part of the elbow becomes sore and tender. It is primarily caused by overexertion.

Tennis elbow develops over time. Repetitive motions can strain the muscles and put too much stress on the tendons, which can further cause microscopic tears in the tissue. Studies in the past suggest that trauma such as a sudden forceful pull, or forceful extension cause more than half of the injuries. Tennis elbow is a nagging ailment that causes quite a bit of distracting pain and causes a loss in gripping power. It can also be resulted from the repeated use of the wrist in a snappy arc like movement.

However, the best cures are anti-inflammatory drugs, icing, physiotherapy and most important of all, rest. Wearing a tight forearm brace also relieves pressure on the tendons; it’s like shifting the pressure point a few inches away from the elbow to the forearm.
It is always said that prevention is better than cure. And preventing tennis elbow is also not impossible. A person can ease into any repetitive motion activity around the house or at work and take rest at the first signs of pain and soreness. One can also continue exercises for strength and flexibility even after the pain has gone away before engaging in tennis or other activities. These are the few measures that should be taken to avoid tennis elbow.

Stay fit, believe in yourself!