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Elbow Injury From Playing

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Banffer, Jan 17, 2019.

  1. Banffer


    Aug 10, 2017
    im looking for some input from anyone who knows about elbow injuries from bass playing. I have a chronic “golfers elbow” (medial epicondylitis? in my left elbow (i am right handed). I got it from lots of playing after a long hiatus. It has now been 18 months and I’ve tried rest, PT and currently a prescription topical treatment but little sign of improvement. Doc is talking about a cortisone shot to the elbow and possible surgery if that doesn’t work. Anyone out there experienced this injury? I could really use some input on treatment outcomes/strategies. Thanks.
  2. I had golfer's elbow years ago, not caused by playing bass but caused by..let's say unbalance in weight lifting training. My triceps were much stronger than my biceps. I did a lot of push movements and no pull movement. So, to fix it I strenghten my biceps, I started doing biceps curl and hammer curl. Those ecercises fixed it.
    I posted my experience in another thread about tendonitis somewhere in this.forum.

    I suggest you start doing hammer curl and biceps curl to strenghten your biceps. Start with light weight, maybe 5lbs, 3 sets of 10 reps of curl and slowly add weight.

    Hope this helps.
  3. Mushroo

    Mushroo Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2007
    Massachusetts, USA
    Did you take a break from playing the bass or have you been playing through the pain for 18 months?
  4. StevieMac


    Mar 17, 2005
    Vancouver, BC
    I’ve had it in my left arm for about 18 month as well, although mine was caused by weight lifting. I’ve tried lots of exercises and therapies with very little change so far. In my case my elbow hurts the worst first thing in the morning right when I get out of bed. Not that I'm pain free the rest of the day of course, far from it.

    I stumbled across a comment on a fitness forum this past Monday that mentioned that when you sleep with your arms bent it keeps tension on the tendons and if you tried sleeping with your arms straight (using a brace if necessary) you may be surprised how fast it heals.

    So, I’m three nights into sleeping with my arm as straight as possible but without using a brace of any kind, and today was the first morning I can remember waking up without that pain. I’m far from cured but the change after three nights is incredible so it may be worth a try.
  5. I have been fighting tennis elbow since May. Paid off the Physio's condo, with little to no results. Doc set me up for an ultrasound, showed that there "may" be nerve damage. i have been on the bench since the end of November! Haven't picked up a bass since!
    Let me preface what I am about to say with this caveat... under no circumstance would I have considered this therapy in the past, but it worked for my daughter who was suffering through constant stomach pain.... Acupuncture! I have had 5 sessions on my arm. It has not felt this good in months! I am likely going to be pain free by the end of next week, with two more sessions under my belt. I could feel the "energy" being released during the sessions and progress after every session.
    If you are going to consider this kind of treatment, here are some thing to consider..
    -find a specialist who was trained in China! A few thousand years of knowledge and experience passed down takes the guess work out of the equation. My "guy" has been fixing people for 30+ years!
  6. Banffer


    Aug 10, 2017
    I’ve taken breaks of up to a month but no real change.
  7. Banffer


    Aug 10, 2017
    Thanks, I will try this.
    Thanks for the suggestion. I have tried acupuncture and no change from it. My real concern is that I can’t taje a long break so I am having to play with the pain. Doctors seem a bit unconcerned about it. That is, a cortisone shot, but I can’t find anyone who understands it from a musicians perspective.
  8. Banffer


    Aug 10, 2017
    Thanks, I will try this and see. So far nothing else has helped.
  9. Mushroo

    Mushroo Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2007
    Massachusetts, USA
    Post some pics or a video of your playing posture and technique. I bet we can help you troubleshoot what you're doing wrong to cause this pain. Bass guitar is one of the easiest instruments to play (from a physical/mechanical perspective) and should never hurt, even a little bit. :)

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