Got shoulder or elbow pain? Then go and grab your tennis ball and let’s get started!
The triceps has three parts (hence the tri), the lateral, medial and long head. Check out this anatomy picture.
Both the lateral and medial head attach from your long arm bone (the humerus) to your elbow. The medial head actually gets right up into your shoulder and attaches onto your shoulder blade, as well as your elbow.
So working as a group, the triceps obviously extend the elbow, but it also adducts the arm (bringing it back into the body).
Not only does a tight and aggravated tricep muscle have implication in many kinds of elbow pain and syndromes, but it will also have an affect on your shoulder health. Don’t believe me? Try the following exercise with a tennis ball and see how many trigger points you can find, and how much better your elbow and shoulder moves and feels.
Triceps Tennis Ball Massage
Start by finding a chair and a table, shouldn’t be too hard. Place your tennis ball on the table, and your arm bent over the tennis ball as shown in the picture. Stay in this position to begin with and roll the length of your triceps. Seriously, get right up under your shoulder, and right down to your elbow. Move left and right a little and really hit those spots. If you find an area that seems more painful tan the rest, stay on it for 30 seconds or until you feel a release. Alternatively, you can also do some active release by extending your arm and bending it around 5 times over the spot.
This is really important and an easy way to get rid of trigger points in your triceps as well as keep your elbow and shoulder healthy. If you want to find out more about releasing your body with a tennis ball and foam roller, check out my self massage guide here.