Squash is an excellent sport for many reasons. It's easy to get into and have fun right off the bat.
Squash can also be a demanding endeavor for those who want to perform at a high level. The intensity of a heated squash session will have you moving rapidly and swinging your arm in many different ways.
With the physical toll such activities can take on your body, getting injured while playing is pretty common. One injury that many squash players have had to deal with is squash elbow (aka “tennis elbow”).
The medical term for tennis elbow is lateral epicondylitis. In simple terms, this medical condition is classified as inflammation of the tendons and muscles by your elbow. This happens because of overuse of your arm in some repetitive way. When you move your arm with the same motion repeatedly it will start to wear down on your muscles and a small tear will form. The inflammation happens after this and can be quite painful.
Of course “tennis elbow” is not something that only tennis players or squash players suffer from.
This sort of condition could happen to anyone, but is more likely to occur in those leading active, sporty lifestyles.
Thousands of people go to their doctors every year seeking treatment for this condition. With this being such a common occurrence, you might be wondering what you can do to prevent having to deal with tennis elbow yourself. Thankfully there are a couple of things you can do.
Squash Elbow Prevention
Generally speaking there are usually two things that will cause a squash player to have problems with tennis elbow. Those two things are improper technique and needing different equipment.
You will notice that professional squash players only very rarely have a problem with an issue such as tennis elbow. This is because they have been trained to develop their swinging technique to the utmost.
A professional player will also undergo strength training programs that will make the entire body much more capable of withstanding the strain of playing squash competitively.
Your everyday squash player can also make use of these training techniques to improve their ability to play the game and protect themselves from suffering from tennis elbow.
Get help from a squash instructor to develop your swing. The backhand stroke has been a problem with many when it comes to suffering injury, so focusing on getting help to develop proper form on your backhand swing would be a good place to start.
Undergo proper training to make sure that your body is the best it can be. These steps will do wonders to protect you from having your tendons suffer from these tears that can happen due to repetition of your movements.
As far as proper equipment goes, you want to make sure you have the best racket for you personally. You don't want your racket to be too tough to grip or the string tension to be too high.
Try out several different rackets and make sure you choose the one that feels the best in your hand. You should be able to get good advice from the sporting goods store if you are having trouble figuring out what racket would be best.
Sometimes though, even if you have taken all of the precautions you can, you can still wind up having issues with tennis elbow. Should tennis elbow become a problem for you, know that there are many different things you can do to treat the condition.
💡 First and foremost, it is important to know that you should consult your doctor about any medical conditions you are suffering from. I will go ahead and list many of the various common treatments for tennis elbow below, but this is no replacement for going to see your doctor to get a proper diagnosis and a professional opinion.
You'll suffer from painful inflammation when you have tennis elbow, so it is important to take anti-inflammatory medication to alleviate the pain.
Medications such as ibuprofen can be purchased and taken as instructed on the bottle to lessen the swelling and mitigate the pain you are experiencing.
A good compression sleeve will provide support to your muscles and can also help to dull nagging pain from tennis elbow.
Another effective way to help yourself feel better is to use ice on your elbow. Apply ice for to your elbow for no longer than fifteen minutes and then rest. You can do this multiple times a day to help cope with the pain.
Simply resting your arm is recommended as well. You don't want to go around doing too much if the inflammation is really bad. A few days of rest can sometimes be enough to help tennis elbow inflammation dissipate. If you find that you are dealing with this injury more frequently, then it is recommended to buy a compression sleeve to wear while you are playing squash.
If the above common treatments don't work to manage your tennis elbow pain, more extreme measures may be recommended by your doctor. Your doctor will have many tools to work with when trying to treat your condition. It is possible that injections may help to take away the pain. Steroidal injections or cortisone shots are common.
Physical therapy may also be prescribed to help you strengthen the muscles that have been torn. More stubborn problems with tennis elbow than this may require surgery to fix. This is quite uncommon though and is only the case in the most severe cases of tennis elbow.
While playing squash you can protect yourself from injury. There will always be a risk of getting hurt while playing any sport or just leading an active lifestyle. With the information above you now have the knowledge to help yourself avoid getting hurt as best as possible.
Train yourself to swing your racket properly, use the best equipment, and buy yourself a good compression sleeve. If you do wind up with a tennis elbow injury, knowing how to treat inflammation will make it less of a hassle. Squash is an amazing competitive sport. You don't have to be afraid of being injured, but it is definitely smart to be prepared.