Tennis elbow,fishing elbow,what do you call it?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Peter Pancho, Oct 7, 2013.

  1. Peter Pancho

    Peter Pancho Active Member

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    ..ya'll ever get this pain like someone is poking your elbow with an ice-pick 24 hrs a day weather moving or not? Well this is what happening with mine. Its been 2 1/2 months now of this non stop pain. Fished gear for the first time in a long time 2 mos ago is when it started, maybe I should stick to fly fishing for now on eh? lol

    Thanks!
     
  2. Travis Bille

    Travis Bille Active Member

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    Lateral epicondylitis
     
  3. Jim Wallace

    Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

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    I had it in my casting arm, but the pain finally went away. It got really bad last year at about this time (damned Coho finished me off, although the Ling Cod that I caught earlier in the Spring might have contributed), and I simply didn't fly fish much after that, nor cast with gear very much, and also tried to avoid doing the motions that screwed mine up in the first place. I could troll streamers or herring, and tried to use my other arm for casting and lifting against any fish. Went down to 3 and 4 wts for my fly fishing, and kept it at an easy level.

    Surprisingly, this Spring I discovered that going surfing seemed to help heal the tendon. I think the compression of the wetsuit sleeve combined with all the paddling must have increased the blood flow to the elbow area.
    Paddling my yaks didn't seem to hurt that tendon as long as I didn't blow it and make any wrong moves. The injury was on my "loose grip" side.
    Took a long time to heal. I haven't fished all that much this Spring, Summer, and Fall, but I got in a lot of surfing, and now the arm feels healed and ready to do battle with Coho again. I did a little bit of cutthroat fishing using my 4 wts, and there was no pain when casting. I might be ready to cast with my 6 wts again.
     
  4. constructeur

    constructeur Active Member

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    I was in the same boat as Jim last Fall and constantly had pain issues with things as simple as removing a tight lid on a pickle jar. I had to change up how I worked through a few tasks at work, and avoid repetitious behavior the best I could. I also had to lay off the single hand rod for quite a while as well.
    My .02 would be to analyze your daily routine, remove the repetition, add in lots of arm stretching (prayer stretch, etc.) lots of massages, be patient as it took quite a while for me to notice change, and maybe consider fishing a float rod this Fall :cool:
     
  5. Smalma

    Smalma Active Member

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    "Humpy Elbow"???

    Especially as I've gotten older I have had wrist and elbow pain issues on my rod arm that are fishing related. When I fish a lot with good numbers of strong fish being caught I would at times develop shooting pains in either joint; especially when it was flexed. Eventually learned that the pain was the result of repetitive torque to the join from the way I was playing the fish.

    The cure was rest, fishing less, and catching fewer and smaller fish. The alternative was to modify the way I was playing the fish to relieve some of the torque on the join. For the wrist I found that making sure that the rod handle extended below my wrist and along my arm. For the elbow I found that if I pulled my elbow into my side (basically anchoring it in my ribs) I spread the pressure along the full arm.

    While I try to make those changes my norm old habitats often return but at the first sign of pain I make sure that I make the appropriate adjustment and have been able control the issue. Making those adjustments are certainly more attractive than the alternative of fishing less with fewer fish.

    Curt
     
  6. garthman

    garthman Member

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    buy or borrow a copy of the book, "Fit to Fish" by Hisey and Berend. available from Amato publishers

    gives excellent advice onhow to deal with injuries and prevent injuries.


    HTH


    garthman
     
  7. 10incher

    10incher Active Member

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    I think the scientific standard is to default to the first published reference of the phenomenon. John Gierach called it simply "fly casters elbow". I think it was in "Trout Bum" from 1988. Now, that may not be the earliest printed reference to it, but it's the earliest one I know of.

    I have tennis elbow more from my job than my fishing (that's my story and I'm sticking to it). I can't fish my 7wt without pain. But I have a very light 4wt that I use on small streams and I can fish that one all day. So, unless there's no way around it, lighter rods and lines seem to help. Oh, and take an anti-inflammatory before exacerbating the injury. Look up stretching exercises. As mentioned, they do help. I live with the pain and it hasn't gone away in over a year now, but it's not as bad as it was and is manageable. I gave up bowling, but not fishing. NEVER!
     
  8. Old Man

    Old Man Just an Old Man

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    Have you all tried lifting weights to make your arms stronger. They don't have to be heavy ones. A few excersize's with 5 lb dumb bells will work.
     
  9. Hillbilly Redneck

    Hillbilly Redneck wishin i was fishin

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  10. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Active Member

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    Tendonitis. I've had it for years. Maybe there's a cure, but not for me. So I have to manage it. Good casting form is a necessity. Playing heavy fish can exacerbate the condition. Management is in the form of ibuprofen and a daily ice bath for 10 minutes when it acts up. Regular exercise with moderate, but not heavy, weight helps keep it in check.

    Sg
     
  11. Jim Wallace

    Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

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    I used an elbow brace similar to the one Hillbilly Redneck referenced. I wore it any time I thought I might have to use my arm, so I just left it on all day. I think that it helped to hold the injured tendon in place when flexing it.
    All it takes is rest, ice, compression, ibuprofen, proper stretching, easing into the correct workout regime to build back the arm, and time.
     
  12. Rob Hardman

    Rob Hardman Active Member

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    +1. I bought that exact brace when I was having problems with casting elbow. Helped a TON. Also, I had to learn to keep my elbow in when casting.
     
  13. Dipnet

    Dipnet The wanted posters say Tim Hartman

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    So I guess I've been doing this pretty consistently simply as a prophylactic measure!! No sore elbows here!:)
     
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  14. smelt047

    smelt047 New Member

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    I developed this problem on both the inside and outside of my casting elbow about ten years ago, during a great autumn of fishing for chum salmon. The pain was bad if I flexed my elbow at all. I eventually got a few cortisone shots, which helped for about six months, but the pain always returned. Finally, I had the damaged elbow tendons "released" surgically in 2004 and 2005. Recovery was about four to six months for each surgery, but I have not had any problems at all since then. I do use a compression brace on the elbow, which the surgeon (himself a fly fisherman) recommended. I'm glad I had the surgery because it cured the problem for good, but I'm also a lot more careful now about putting unusual stress on the elbow. Good luck with your problem: it's a drag to have such a nagging pain.
     
  15. Peter Pancho

    Peter Pancho Active Member

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    All you guys are awesome, thank you for the great advice! Looks like I'll be taking lots of Ibuprofen, exercise my arm more and have plenty of patience. My mind says go go, but my 45 yr old body says "wooaa haaay, slow down!" I'm sure this chum season won't help any either.

    I was born left handed but fish right, gonna try to reverse all my arm and hand motions,etc. and see how that works.. Thanks again!
     
  16. 10incher

    10incher Active Member

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    Any anti inflammatory will work. I take aspirin. Some people say it causes stomach upset. Bah! Ibuprofen upsets my stomach more than aspirin. Aspirin is still the best choice if you don't have any problems taking it. One caveat is that aspirin in large, repeated doses can cause Reye's syndrome while ibuprofen doesn't. Both are tough on the kidneys. Avoid using acetaminophen for pain. It's not anti inflammatory and will torture your liver if you drink nightly, as many do.
     
  17. Jim Wallace

    Jim Wallace Smells like low tide

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    Peter, I cut back on my drinking while I was taking ibuprofen regularly. After a couple weeks of doing that (along with icing, stretching, etc), I quit taking the ibuprofen as soon as I noticed that the inflammation around my elbow had diminished. That shit also puts a nasty burden on your liver if you drink nightly.
    My brother had been taking ibuprofen regularly for many months without a break, and then he noticed that he was seeing a lot more "floaters" in his eyes than normal. His Doc told him it was likely the "too much" ibuprofen, and to take a break. He doesn't drink regularly, nor very much, though.
     
  18. Mike Garritson

    Mike Garritson Member

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    Had the same thing for approx. a year. Used the brace, steroid injections, and anti-inflammatories. The biggest relief unfortunately came in the form of rest and just not aggravating it. For fly fishing, I think a two hander and spey style casting would help quite a bit.
     

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