My family is an avid fan of tennis. It started when my mom went back to playing tennis one summer and then suddenly all of us became so interested in it. For one whole summer we had trainings every morning and when we were good enough to rally the tennis ball, we practiced during the afternoons.
If there is anything I remember that our tennis coach kept on saying, it was to be very careful about our form especially our arm’s and wrist’s. Unlike badminton, when you play tennis, you are not supposed to move your wrists. This is because the tennis racket is heavy and when you hit a tennis ball with such impact with only using your wrist, chances are that it will result in injury or a tendon will be broken or stretched. The proper way of hitting a tennis ball with your racket is to use your whole arm’s force and complete it with a follow-through.
I am no professional tennis player, but I did learn the basics of tennis enough to be able to play it in singles or doubles. There was a time when I had my own wrist injury because I mistakenly hit the ball with only using my wrist force. Since it was in a game, I was intent on winning the match against my sister. Somehow I let myself forget the basic rule our coach told us. I was so focused on winning I ended up just wanting to hit the ball so it can get to the other side and my sister will miss hitting it altogether. Needless to say, I had a few blunders in form and after the game, I felt that my wrist was a bit painful. Ice did not relieve the pain although it was helpful in preventing my wrist to be swollen. The pain in my right wrist was tolerable but made it an inconvenience is that it was my writing hand. I had to get it checked immediately so I could write in school the next day. Good thing that a physio clinic opens on Sunday near our area in South Yarra.
Physiotherapy, also known as physical therapy, are massages and exercises that help relieve and heal muscle pains and injuries. Since my injury was tolerable in terms of pain, what made me undergo physiotherapy? Well, I wanted to make the healing process faster. Of course, the damage to my wrist tendon will not heal overnight, but I believe that undergoing physical therapy will help speeding up the process. Besides, my also went through physiotherapy before when she had a tennis elbow.
Speaking of my mom, another injury you could have when you play tennis is a tennis elbow. Tennis elbow is as common as wrist injuries in tennis. This is usually caused by a wrong form in follow-throughs or swinging the racket or an overuse of both arm and wrist. For my mom, her tennis elbow was caused by a wrong form that she was not able to correct during the first stages of learning tennis. My mom tells me that when she plays, she does not feel any pain at all. Nonetheless, our coach advised her to stop playing for a while. This was to ensure that her tendons would heal and no added tension will be put on them.
I would like to believe that her injury could have healed faster if she listened to our coach, but what can I do when tennis is her passion? Anyway, she continued playing tennis and this time, our coach looked closely at her form (he did not at first because my mom had training when she was a child so she knew how to place the sport already). I remember that it hurt more when her form was corrected. This comes to no surprise because aside from the fact that her tendons in her elbow are not healed yet, the change in form caused different parts of her arm to move which affected her elbow too.
This time she decided to go to a physiotherapy clinic since it was pretty bothersome. During her sessions and similar to my sessions, she was asked to do stretches and exercises. Some exercises were pretty simple you would not think they made a significant difference, but they did. There were wrist curls and biceps curls and some exercises that involved just putting pressure holding a tennis ball. There were times that the therapist gave massages too. After a while, my mom’s tennis elbow was relieved.