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Weightlifters can experience injuries due to the repetitive nature of the activity and lifting heavy weights. Let’s take a look at some common injuries and prevention methods.

Tennis elbow – Defined by wear and tear to tendon insertion of the forearm extensor muscles to the lateral elbow. The main muscle involved is the Extensor Carpi Radialis Brevis which is the main wrist extensor muscle. Tennis elbow used to be thought of as an inflammatory condition but is now known to be a degenerative condition where small tears develop in the tendon. Braces and strengthening exercises can be effective at reducing symptoms.

Triceps tendonitis – Where the insertion of the triceps tendon becomes irritated and inflamed. Generally best treated initially with rest, activity modification and reducing swelling and then graded exercises and return to sports.

Biceps tendon rupture – Under heavy loads sometimes the biceps tendon can rupture and pull off the radial tuberosity. A full tear will require surgery to reattach the tendon end. Partial tears can be treated with a sling, graded exercises and strengthening.

Wrist pain – Due to the loading through the wrist through dynamic movements or at the extremes of motion, pain may be experienced. This could be due to a number of factors such as wrist ganglion, ligament injury, reduced stability and strength, or incorrect lifting technique. Your therapist will be able to assess your wrist to determine cause of the pain and provide a suitable treatment plan.

Prevention Methods

• Work with a Personal Trainer or Exercise Physiologist at the gym to ensure you have correct technique.

• Ensure grading exercises appropriately to build to strength slowly.

Common Treatments

Depending on the cause, a Hand Therapist will provide you with splinting and exercises tailored to your individual needs and to maximise your recovery in order for you to return to weightlifting.