Oftentimes people wonder what’s the difference between golfer’s elbow vs. tennis elbow. They both involve pain in the elbow but are often times mixed up. You can actually get golfer’s elbow from playing tennis, which makes the golfer’s elbow vs. tennis elbow discussion even more confusing!
We’ll clear up some of the confusion with these sports injuries.
Golfer’s Elbow vs. Tennis Elbow
Tennis elbow is when you have pain on the forearm on the outside of the elbow.
Golfer’s elbow is when you have pain on the forearm on the inside of the elbow.
Both are forms of elbow tendinitis and require sports injury treatment. You can remember it with this mnemonic: Golfers are trying to hit the ball in. Tennis players are trying to out match their opponents.
What is tennis elbow?
Tennis elbow is a painful condition that occurs when tendons in the elbow are overused. This occurs after repetitive motions of the wrist and arm. The pain occurs where the tendons of your forearm muscles attach to a bony bump on the outside of your elbow. Pain can also spread into your forearm and wrist.
Playing tennis isn’t the only activity prone to this injury and athletes aren’t the only sufferers. Plumbers, painters, carpenters and butchers can all suffer tennis elbow on the job.
What is golfer’s elbow?
Golfer’s elbow is the result of pain and inflammation in the tendons connecting the forearm to the elbow. The pain occurs where the tendons of your forearm muscles attach to a bony bump on the inside of your elbow. Pain may also radiate into the forearm. Like tennis elbow, golfer’s elbow occurs from overusing the forearm muscles that allow you to grip, rotate your arm, and flex your wrist. These repetitive motions can can lead to tiny tears and pulls in the tendons.
Common sports that cause this injury include tennis, bowling, and baseball. But, any repetitive forearm, wrist or hand motion can lead to injury. Playing golf isn’t the only activity prone to this injury and athletes aren’t the only sufferers. Workers using tools like screwdrivers and hammers, raking, or painting can suffer from this condition.
Treatment for Golfer’s Elbow vs. Tennis Elbow
If you feel persistent pain in the muscles attached to your elbow, seek sports medicine help. The treatment for these conditions is similar in that you should seek professional care. Don’t give the condition a chance to worsen. If you do, it can become more difficult and expensive to treat, or impossible to completely fix. Talk to a sports medicine doctor as soon as you can.