How To Strengthen Your Elbows

Many people go through life without paying much attention to their elbows. However, as soon as they start to hurt or they’re no longer able to bend their arm quite so much, things change. 

Elbow pain is a lot more common than you may realize. This is especially the case with active people. Elbow pain can occur in people who are active because almost every upper body movement involves using your elbows. In addition to this, the more repetitive movements you undertake and the more power you add to your movements, the greater the risk of injury. 

So how can you strengthen your elbows? We’re going to look at this now: 

Bodyweight Training and Your Elbows

When you first start bodyweight training or any form of upper body exercise, you will place strain on your elbows. All of the movements that involve your hands, arms, wrists and elbows are quite different to the movements you usually undertake. 

This is why your elbows are vulnerable to becoming injured. There might be excessive or abnormal forces taking place. These forces can include impacts to your forearm or pulls to your forearm that have an impact on your elbow. 

Take it Easy 

Any physical therapist will tell you that you need to exercise slowly but surely. This is particularly the case where stresses on your elbows are outside the normal range of movements. While you will not need to avoid these types of movements completely, you should build them up. This will ensure you are a lot less likely to injure your elbows. 

If you’re not sure you can perform any suggested exercises you should refrain from doing so. Placing too much strain on your elbows can cause permanent injury. Please always speak to a doctor before you embark on any exercise regime. This is especially important if you have injured any part of your arm, hand, wrist, or elbow. 

Elbow Pain 

If you suffer from pain in either or both of your elbows, you’ll find the pain will be diagnosed by identifying the affected tissue. The affected tissue could be a ligament, a muscle, or a tendon. You could be suffering from a stress fracture or bursitis. 

However, unless your elbow has experienced some kind of trauma or impact injury, many diagnoses are unhelpful. 

– Tennis or Golfer’s Elbow

Every year, people are told that they are suffering from tennis or golfer’s elbow. However, this diagnosis does not tell us why you are in pain or why you are experiencing difficulties. 

If you have tennis or golfer’s elbow you should rest the elbow for at least 2 weeks. This is because your elbow will be inflamed. Many people find that it takes longer than 2 weeks for their elbows to heal. 

Strengthening Your Elbows 

Below you will find some exercises that will help you to strengthen your elbows. You do not have to have injured your elbows in order to strengthen them. 

– Grip on a rope or towel

Place your feet on the ground shoulder width apart. Hold a towel or a rope out in front of you for 15 to 30 seconds and keep your elbows straight. Now bend your elbows and hold the towel or rope for 15 seconds. 

Try to do 3 or 4 sets of this exercise for each position. If you experience pain while exercising please stop immediately. Consult your doctor if the pain does not go away. 

– Elbow extension with weights

Extend your elbows while holding weights. Try to keep your elbows straight. This can help with any tightness you’re experiencing. Use a moderate weight, and take care as it’s easy to overdo this exercise. Make sure that when you hold the weights you’re comfortable and you hold for at least 30 seconds. 

Repeat this exercise twice and make sure you continue to move your elbows once you’ve completed 3 sets. If you experience pain while exercising please stop immediately. Consult your doctor if the pain does not go away. 

– Elbow flexion

Sit up straight with your hands place under a table. Now try to lift both of your hands up straight. Hold the position for 6 seconds. 

Repeat 10 times. Strengthening your biceps, this exercise will help you when you’re bending your elbows as less strain will be placed on them. If you experience pain while exercising please stop immediately. Consult your doctor if the pain does not go away. 

Elbows can be injured very easily and they can take a lot of time to heal. If you have injured your elbow, it’s important that you seek medical treatment. Some rest and painkillers followed by exercises can ensure you’re more likely to recover from your injury.

Please note, you do not have to have injured your elbows to exercise them. You can always begin exercises should you wish to. Please just make sure you’re careful and you do the exercises slowly but surely at first. 

Written by Valentin Bosioc

Valentin Bosioc - wellness specialist, certified personal trainer, certified fitness instructor, celebrity trainer, Musclemania Champion, Ninja Warrior Semifinalist, world wide motivator!

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