Top 5 Exercises for Golfer’s Elbow

Let’s talk about golfer’s elbow, and discuss our top five exercises to help recover from golfer’s elbow. We’ve used research on eccentric exercises, but also our clinical experience to support our decision making. Not every exercise will suit you, so try them out and work out which ones work for you. If you get any pain, stop the exercise, or course. Also, if you are unsure, seek support from a physio or osteopath. At Surrey Physio, we provide online consultations for those overseas, or face-to-face sessions for those close to one of our clinics in London and the South-East.

Golfer's Elbow, also referred to as medial epicondylitis, is a painful condition affecting the forearm muscles. It is caused by overuse of the muscles that flex the wrist and fingers, leading to pain and inflammation of the tendons that attach to the inner elbow. Some physios are unsure if the condition is actually inflammatory, with some research suggesting the tendon actually degenerates. However, most clinicians do support the inflammatory theory. Whether there is inflammation or not, there is pain with golfer’s elbow and we can help improve the pain.

Golfer's elbow usually develops gradually over time and is more common among golfers and other athletes who use their arms and wrists repetitively. It is also prevalent among manual labourers like construction workers and gardeners. Cyclists on bumpy paths or off-roading can also get it, as well as machine handlers.

The symptoms of golfer's elbow include pain, tenderness and stiffness at the inner elbow. The discomfort may also spread to the hand and fingers. Activities that involve gripping, twisting or flexing the wrist can exacerbate the pain.

Typical treatments for golfer's elbow include rest, ice, and anti-inflammatory drugs. Physical therapy and exercises that focus on strengthening the forearm muscles can also be beneficial. In cases of greater severity, a physician may recommend steroid injections or surgery.

Step 1: Rest, avoid painful activities.

Step 2: Reduce pain and inflammation. Ice is a good option here.

Step 3: Strengthen your arm so it can take increased loading in the future without causing pain.

Step 4: Shockwave is a great way to treat golfer’s elbow (performed at Surrey Physio).

Step 5: If these steps do not work, then you may need to consider a steroid injection. We do steroid injections if all-else fails.

It is crucial to treat golfer's elbow as soon as possible to prevent further tendon damage. The condition can become chronic and result in a loss of arm strength and range of motion if left untreated.

It is crucial to treat golfer's elbow as soon as possible to prevent further tendon damage. The condition can become chronic and result in a loss of arm strength and range of motion if left untreated.

1. Wrist Extension Stretch: Hold your arm and hand in front of you, with your fingers pointing upwards. Pull your hand backwards, to create a stretch on the underside of your wrist and forearm, and hold. This exercise will help stretch your forearm muscles, improving the mobility of your wrist.

2. Self-Massage for Golfer’s Elbow: With your arm supported on your thigh, gently massage along the inside of your forearm between your elbow and wrist. This helps reduce tension in the forearm muscles.

3. Ice for Golfer’s Eblow: Use an ice pack or pack of frozen peas (wrapped in a thin towel) over the inside of your elbow. This can be useful for golfer's elbow, as well as other pathologies of the elbow.

4. Eccentric Wrist Strengthening: Rest your arm on a table with your palm facing up, and hold a 1-2kg dumbbell. Lift your hand upwards using your other hand, and then with a controlled movement let the weight pull your hand back down. At the bottom, repeat by lifting your own hand upwards again, and then letting the weight pull the hand back down. This is a strengthening exercise for the wrist, elbow and forearm and can be useful for golfer's elbow.

5. Concentric Wrist Strengthening: Rest your forearm on a table. Let your wrist and hand hang over the edge of the table. Hold a small dumbbell or other weight in your hand with your palm facing up. Let the wrist extend under the weight of the dumbbell, and curl up into flexion. Repeat by letting the weight drop down before curling up again. This is an eccentric and concentric strengthening exercise for the wrist and forearm.

For the prevention of golfer's elbow, it is essential to employ correct technique when performing activities involving the arms and wrists. Additionally, it is essential to warm up and stretch before engaging in any activity that involves repetitive arm and wrist motions. In addition, taking frequent breaks and switching between activities can reduce the likelihood of developing golfer's elbow.

If you are a therapist and like the exercises and information in this document, please go to and sign up to this amazing exercise prescription software. If you are a patient and need some advice, treatment or a consultation, please go to We provide virtual and face-to-face appointments with our expert team.

If you want to buy any equipment seen on these articles, please go to

There is a great article here for more information on tennis elbow: