Training

How To Treat Tendonitis | Prevention & Cures

Tendonitis is the inflammation of your tendons. It is not generally an overall condition, rather you may likely experience it when it affects a specific body part. It can affect all ages, but most adults as a result of wear and tear; this is because as you age your tendons lose their elasticity and weaken.

If your job involves repetitive strains, vibrations and awkward positions that impact your tendons then it’s essential that measures are taken to prevent or minimize any symptoms of tendon injuries.

Your tendons attach your muscles to your bones and are sometimes referred to as sort issue because of similarities to cartilage.

Some people are more prone to the condition than others, and lifestyle plays a big part. One of the main causes is repeatedly overdoing a certain movement again and again. The most commonly suffered forms of tendon injuries tend to go by different names, including tennis elbow, swimmer’s shoulder and jumper’s knee.

As you can tell from these titles, when an athlete repeats a certain motion over and over – the swing in tennis, the crawl when swimming – this becomes a problem. But does it have to be a problem that keeps you from training?

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When your tendons are inflamed there is more chance of you suffering an injury. When you first realize a strain or pain on a tendon, you should identify the cause. If it’s not an obvious knock, for example, then take a look at any repetitive movements you’ve been doing during your workout. Avoid this exercise in the short term and apply ice to the injury several times a day.

Along with adequate rest, you should keep the area bandaged. Compression clothing has been proven to help with recovery. Applying this pressure helps to improve circulation while allowing a free range of movement. It has been proven to increase blood flow to your muscles as well as keeping your muscles firmly in place.

When an injury to your tendons persists and you consult a GP, you can expect treatments such as physiotherapy, corticosteroid injections or shock wave therapy. In cases such as a ruptured tendon, surgery may be required.
With exercise and injuries, the best form of defence can be to attack the issue before it happens. So how can you prevent tendon injuries?

sprain & strain

Prevent

You’ll have endlessly heard about the importance of stretching – especially if you’re a weightlifter constantly putting your body under the strain of heavyweights. Stretching your limbs isn’t just about limbering up your muscles, but your tendons too. Stretching can also be a good indication of any issues that may arise once you start lifting; it will always be better to find out about the onset of any stiffness or injuries before further aggravating the problem with heavy weights.

Obviously, repetition and strain are two key components of weightlifting. The most common areas for injuries include the rotator cuff, the biceps, wrists, Achilles and posterior tibialis tendon.

By warming up with cardio you can increase your body temperature so that your muscles are better-prepared. To the same effect, submaximal exercises are a good way to test your performance levels without excessive strain.
Balance may be an issue. Take a look at your recent workouts and see if everything is even. If you favor chest workouts, make sure that your back is receiving the same attention.

The technique is important for your health, safety and progress as much as it is for competitive reasons. A good example is that any jerky movements or loose lifts may be tweaking your tendons while they’re under strain.

Rest

Keep rest and exhaustion in mind. Working to muscle failure is a highly effective way to develop as a bodybuilder, but it is important you use this method sparingly. If you make every set about muscle failure then this will have a detrimental effect on your joints and tendons.

If you’re unsure, as a general rule you might save this for just the last exercise of a session. Equally, you need to rest. This doesn’t just mean recuperating after a workout and making sure that you get the fuel that you need for your body to recover, but it also means resting between sets.

As with muscle failure, shorter rests can be highly effective for building, but when overused it can result in your tendons paying the price. If you’re struggling with an injury, take your time, but when using shorter breaks in general, do so strategically. For example, save them for the end of your workout.

 

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Faye Reid

Faye Reid

Writer and expert

Faye has an MSc in Sport Physiology and Nutrition, and puts her passion into practice as goal attack for her netball team, and in competitive event riding. She enjoys a pun, and in her spare time loves dog walking and eating out.


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