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Tennis Elbow From Frequent Fishing

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My elbow has been screaming in pain lately, from things as simple as moving it or drinking coffee. Got back from fishing yesterday morning and my elbow was virtually unusable all day. It's the morning now and it feels better, but still considerably messed up. I looked up the symptoms and sure enough, it's tennis elbow. This has been ongoing for well over a month... I don't want to but it might be time to put up the poles for a while. For someone who goes fishing three to four times a week, five hours at a time, how am I to cope?

 

HOW AM I TO COPE!?!?! [raises fists to the sky] ow ow ow....

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Join the club. I really feel for you. I have battling fisherman's elbow now for well over a year and half. Sounds like you have it really bad also. My best advice is to get physical therapy as soon as possible to get the swelling down. Stop fishing for at least 4 weeks. Yeah, I know that sucks. I did the cortisone, shockwave therapy, rest for 2 months thing, all to no avail. I finally met a therapist who was big on biomechanics and she figured out that I had weakness on my arm and shoulder leading to the tendonitis. I had to really change the way I fish. I am no where out of the woods, but I can cope with it a lot better than before. I can shake hands again if that makes sense. If I can help you with more info pls do not hesitate to PM me. Fisherman's elbow, aka Tennis elbow, is a big deal. Its very debilitating especially if you love to fish. I wish you the best of a luck and a speedy recovery.  

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That is not good news.

 

You know the doctor will tell you not to fish for at least a month.

 

But you have to take or it now before it gets to be a major problem.

 

I wonder if a physical therapist could help you with your casting motion? PTs do fantastic things to help us walk and move better and I would think you could find one out there who could look at your body motion when you cast.

 

Best wishes for a fast recovery. Keep us posted if you go to a doctor or PT and what they say and do.

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Another thing that can help is using a lower-power, softer action rod. When my elbow is bad, I can't really use an MH or heavier, fast action rod - just can't get enough force into the cast to get any distance and it just kills my elbow - all pain - no gain. Using "M" power, fast action rods or lower, OR, using MH power, moderate action rods or lower, are much easier for me to cast on the "bad" days...

 

Here's a link to a pretty informative thread on this topic from a while back:  Fishing Elbow/Tennis Elbow

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Cast with BOTH arms.

 

The doctor telling me I can´t fish for a month or more -----> can take a hike !

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I had it real bad last year, I could not even open the car door with that arm, just a constant throbbing pain. The pain is caused by inflammation, so I took something called Zyflamend, made by New Chapter. It takes about a week and a half to kick in, but it takes care of all the inflammation in your joints. It helped me to alleviate the arthritis pain in my hips as well, the pain went from a 9 to a 1 on a scale of 10. I have now switched over to an organic tart cherry juice concentrate, taking basically a shot glass full every day, it works just as well, and it tastes pretty good! There are plenty of herbs, plants and foods on this earth, and they all have a reason for being here, I would prefer to use something like that as opposed to a chemical that is most likely going to have worse side effects than the intended "fix" it provides.

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Here's a link to a pretty informative thread on this topic from a while back: Fishing Elbow/Tennis Elbow

x2 on article i read that when first posted and also using two hands for casting.I read several other articles on internet also. I strectch during work week and before,during,after fishing. I also picked up 2 carbonlite rods from BassPro and love them. Im going to change out my others as time allows. They run sales on them during year a few times for $80. I can now use tv remote and drink coffee without screaming.

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It's time for glucosomine it's a joint lube. They first used it on race horses, then dogs. It should relieve your pain. I'm on a anti-inflammatory and a pain med for my knees so I feel nothing till it gets really bad. I'm beat after making 500 to 1,000 casts per outing but that's old age now.

When I was riding dirtbikes with my son using every muscle group and logging full time I was in the best shape of my life. My doctor tells me to go back to riding again.

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I've been on glucosomine/condroiten for 6 months and still have the problem! See a doctor before it gets so bad you are crippled. I had to get several cordisone shots and use braces for most of last season. This season it's a tad better :(

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im experiencing some discomfort in my left shoulder after a day of fishing. It is on my non casting arm which is weird. Is it something to worry about?

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That issue flares up with me from time to time.  Much of the time, it is due to poor mechanics, i.e. a perfectly smooth and executed pitch hurts much less than a herby-jerky, too much of a wrist snap kind of motion.

 

Some of the time, it is due to equipment, i.e. when I have lost a few baits, and cut off some line due to abrasion, and so forth,  I have to give pitches a little more muscle to achieve the same distance, and that will occasionally turn on the elbow pain.

 

I've bitched to my doctor about this and he basically said, "tough", you've got other, more pressing health issues.  So, when it flares up, I've got a fore arm brace he told me to wear.  I keep a bottle of those 12 hour Alieve tablets in the tow vehicle and while driving to the lake, eat one with a cup of coffee and it lasts throughout the day, for the most part.

 

For most reaction bait tactics, like cranks, spinnerbaits, swim baits, I use two hand casting techniques most of the time (when I remember, and it only takes one or two elbow twinges to not forget)

For pitching, and other soft plastic techniques, I use the lightest rods and reels that I can afford,  I keep the reels topped off with line and I pay alot of attention to smooth technique.   I know it sounds weird, but even on days when my elbow is throbbing, perfect technique hurts alot less than a hasty, herby-jerky pitch.

 

Like I said earlier, eating an Alieve first thing in the morning helps a lot.  I am pretty certain that icing down your elbow first thing after you were finished fishing for the day would help also, but who does that?  Something to consider.

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Ice is extremely helpful after an outing or for the end of the day. Alleve works great, however consistently taking an otc med means there is a problem that has to be dealt with.

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There is increasing doubt in the medical community that glucosomine has any effectiveness as joint lubrication. I wish it wasn't so because my casting shoulder is bone on bone these days.

 

It's time for glucosomine it's a joint lube.

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Add 30 yrs & we'll talk ;)

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What about switching to a spinning outfit or vie versa.  I've developed carpel tunnel and the doc suggested I switch. So far spinning has alleviated quite a bit of pain and numbness.

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I have had the issue in both elbows over the past year. Got so bad I couldn't lift my coffee cup without big-time pain and shaking.

 

There are therapies out there, including an expensive one (forget the technical name) where they take your blood, use only the red blood cells and inject it into the areas of pain, aided by use of sonographic equipment to find inflamed tissue. Watched a video where a pro fisherman had it done.

 

Anyhow, I've used exercises, and yes, rest. Interesting thing that I found *for me*, when I started P90x, the push up sequences actually helped my arms. Every time I did them I did so pushing up from my knees, not prone all the way to my toes. I'd feel a burning rush into my elbows. From then on -- and I quit P90x, unfortunately -- my elbows have been MUCH better. I try to do push ups several times a week now until I feel the burn in my elbows.

 

Like I said, this may just be me, push ups may or may not help you depending on how far "gone" you are. If you can see an orthopedic doctor who specializes in arms/shoulders, that's the best route, IMO. General doctors are not always versed in such specifics, whereas a doc who is specially trained to deal with elbows and elbow tendons is.

 

2 cents. 

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I had a pretty bad case that started about this time last year and went clear into the late fall.   The motion of pitching a heavier bait out would bring me to my knees, and skipping a Senko?   Forget about it, it wasn't happening.  I learned to nurse it as best as I could while fishing.   Oddly, working a drywall knife (my primary job) didn't bother it too much.   Over the winter it did go away and so far this year it has not returned.................in that arm.     I did have a short bout a month ago with my other arm, but that was from delivering mail (my secondary job) and the constant opening and closing of the boxes at weird angles.   I started doing things a little different and that cleared up as well.

 

A buddy of mine has it pretty bad.   Has had the shots and it helps for a few weeks but comes right back.

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Look up kelly starrett and his mobility wod stuff.  He's VERY legit, trains olympians and pro athletes and has his PHD in physio.

Dead serious he has some AMAZING information abou tall things mobility and some grat advice on how to reduce inflamation and proper use of body mechanics to prevent things like this from happening in the first place.

 

You can buy some voodoo bands from rogue fitness, wrap the area, and really get some great relief!

 

Proper mechanics in all things really helps reduce overall injures across the board.

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I had no idea this was even a thing until recently, and now I realize it's a serious and widespread issue. Thanks for all the input, guys. I'm going to go easy on my elbow until it feels better, even if it means fewer and shorter fishing outings. I'm also going to work on better casting technique - I've always been the type to whip it out for the longest cast possible, and now I see that's probably the main culprit.

 

That article that was linked to early in this thread is a gold mine of preventive and recovery knowledge; thanks for linking that!

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I've also been there. In addition to the good info others have given you, GET a forearm band type support. Get one that is adjustable and has a pressure patch. Mine is an ACE brand, there are many good ones. Wear it 24/7 for the first few weeks. It will start helping the first day. Use heat on your elbow in the morning, ice at night.

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I don't have tennis elbow problem, but I do use both hands to cast. I don't know how you all cast, but the way I do, the most of the work is done by snapping action of right wrist and pull of the left hand, if that makes sense. Right hand move is similar to using a small hammer nailing a small nail. I have one pistrol grip I still take out time to time, it feels very weird casting with one hand now, except when I roll cast.

 

My problem area is my left wrist from twitching action that I give to baits. I tried to learn to use my arm instead, but it feels wired.

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If you truly want to cure it and not just delay it I would highly recommend looking into what I posted earlier.

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I feel your pain! Naproxen has become my friend.

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TSrfB7JIzxY

 

Don't blow it off until you try it. I've had this problem come up since I was 17 playing guitar. Both my elbow and hands cramp up REALLY bad. These stretches help IMMENSELY. Granted it doesn't ALWAYS help in the heat of the moment, it does help to stretch everything out before a day on the water.

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