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Elbow pains

Hey! Iv been tattooing for 7 years now but in the last 6 months I have been getting a really sore elbow on my stretching arm. It's a really aching dull pain that after a full day sitting is sore for some time afterwards! I also get it sometimes when I draw. I've asked many fellow tattooists with no recognition. I am booked in to see a physio next week but am wondering, does anyone have this issue?


RE:Elbow pains


Hey man,

I've had this a few times, and heard a few others get this problem also so I looked into it, When I get the pain, I pay super close attention to what I'm doing to see why I get this pain because I found some days are worse than others, but what I found to be the biggest irritation of the elbow, is not so much my hand position, but my overall arm position, Sometimes when I'm stretching, I will raise my elbow a little higher than normal, and I will sometimes raise my shoulder. after paying attention to this, I noticed that the physics had changed to the amount of pressure I am putting on my elbow. ( the position is very similar to doing close grip pushups) On occasion if I'm tattooing the ribs or difficult skin and I get this pain, I will rest my forearm slightly on the customer (without making them uncomfortable of course or leaning any of my weigh on them, and I will let them know that I'm going to rest my arm because their skin is just a bit "stretchier than normal") and focus on my hand and fingers stretching instead of that "palm pushing stretch" if you know what I mean. That extra bit of weight off your elbow will really help calm it down until you finish.
Also, I am a bit of a gym Nazi, so I am able to exercise my elbows well to help prevent this kind of discomfort. You'll find that doing one arm wall pushups with your elbow raised to the side will really help strengthen this area..or some over head extensions....
Another thing you can do in the mean time to help get some relief is to buy a compression sleeve. this will help to keep your elbow warm and reduce any inflammation. The best sleeves I would recommend is SBD Sleeves. When you wear these sleeves you get a slight spring effect and it take some of the weight off your elbow when you stretch...

Hope that helps, Take care

Stephen Stacey
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