Acupuncture for Treating Tennis Elbow

Tennis elbow (or Lateral Epicondylitis) is a common injury caused by overuse of the muscles that allow us to extend or “bend back” our wrist. Playing tennis is usually the main cause, but any activity involving repetitive use of these muscles can be the culprit.

Tennis elbow is often described as soreness or pain on the outer aspect of the elbow that usually occurs in the following situations:

  • Pain when pressing on the outside of the elbow
  • Pain on the outside of the elbow when the wrist is bent back
  • Weakness in the wrist when performing daily activities such as opening a door or writing.

It is important to receive proper treatment for tennis elbow, to ensure a quick recovery and to decrease the risk of reoccurrence.  Using ice packs, forearm bands and anti-inflammatories may provide immediate pain relief, but the results are often temporary.

I have witnessed the great results that can be achieved by using acupuncture for treating tennis elbow and a systemic review of scientific evidence published in the Journal of Rheumatology supports this. It showed the use of acupuncture to be effective in reducing the pain associated with tennis elbow.[1]

[1] Trinh KV, Phillips SD, Ho E, Damsma K. Acupuncture for the alleviation of lateral epicondyle pain: a systematic review. Rheumatology 2004;43: 1085–90.


Acupuncture is an effective treatment for tennis elbow because it directly targets the muscles and tendons affected by overuse. It helps the tight muscles to relax and increases blood flow to the area, which in turn promotes the healing process. A Registered Acupuncturist at Qi Integrated Health Clinic in Kitsilano Vancouver, will provide you with a comprehensive treatment plan and recovery program. Each treatment will be individually tailored to include:

  • Acupuncture
  • Stretches & Exercises
  • Activity modifications

Your acupuncturist will also make recommendations for ways to continue the healing process outside the clinic, such as having a tennis instructor evaluate your techniques and ensuring you are using proper equipment.

Whether your condition is new or has been lingering for years, find out how acupuncture can give you the freedom to play tennis without worrying about pain in your elbow. Come see us at Qi Integrated Health to get started on your path to recovery.

Jessica Kilb
Registered Acupuncturist, Kinesiologist