The Causes of Golfer’s Elbow (Other than Golf!)

Posted on August 23rd, 2017 by Orthopaedic Specialty Group

Golfer’s elbow may not be as well known as it’s cousin, tennis elbow, but it still affects thousands of people each year. While tennis elbow affects the outside of your arm (where your forearm meets your elbow) golfer’s elbow affects the muscles on the inside of your elbow. And despite its name, playing golf isn’t the only way you can get it.

What is Golfer’s Elbow?

Golfer’s elbow is an overuse injury — a type of muscle of joint injury that’s caused by repetitive motions. Golfer’s elbow causes pain where the tendons of your forearm muscle attach to the bump of your elbow. The effects of golfer’s elbow can range from mild discomfort to intense pain.

What Causes It?

  • Golf: It may not be the only cause, but golf is certainly one of the main causes of golfer’s elbow. Swinging a club too forcefully or incorrectly can take a toll on your muscles and tendons over time.
  • Racket sports: Using a racket that’s too small or heavy can cause injury to your elbow.
  • Throwing sports: If it wasn’t already named golfer’s elbow, odds are this injury would be called pitcher’s elbow. Baseball and softball pitchers are at a higher risk for golfer’s elbow if they’re not pitching properly, or if they’re pitching too much.
  • Weightlifting: Curling your wrists during bicep exercises can overload your elbow muscles and cause them to become inflamed.

Preventing Golfer’s Elbow

So if staying off the green doesn’t protect you from golfer’s elbow, what can?

  • Stretching before and after any sports or physical activity.
  • Always take time to learn proper form, regardless of what sport you’re playing.
  • Use equipment that is right for you.
  • Know when it’s time to rest your body.

Our shoulder and elbow team at Orthopaedic Specialty Group is comprised of board-certified surgeons who specialize in all areas of shoulder and elbow diagnosis and treatment. We specialize in all forms of shoulder and elbow surgeries, from arthroscopy and minimally invasive procedures to complex fracture work.