Tendons are made of a dense, regularly arranged collagen fibers. They attach muscle to bone. Tendinitis results from microscopic tearing of the tendon due to overloading, with a resulting inflammatory response. Simply put, Tendinitis is inflammation of the tendon.

Grades of Tendinitis

  • Grade 1 – Affected tendon has pain only after activity
  • Grade 2 – Affected tendon has pain at the beginning of the activity which disappears during activity and returns after activity.
  • Grade 3 – Affected tendon has pain at the beginning, during and after activity. Pain may restrict activity.
  • Grade 4 – Affected tendon has pain with activities of daily living. Pain continues to get worse.


Tendinitis is an overuse injury. For example, those in occupations that require you to perform repetitive motions are at a higher risk of developing tendinitis.


There is a gradual onset with local tenderness one or two days after activity, inflammation, heat and swelling along the tendon and decreased range of motion of the affected muscle.

Pain occurs during and after activity, Chronic inflammation, adhesions and fibrosis (scarring) are present. decreased range of motion and strength, tendon may degenerate to the point of rupture.

How can Massage Therapy help?

In the acute phase massage therapy can help decrease the amount of inflammation present, reduce pain and maintain range of motion. In the chronic stage the goal of massage therapy is to reduce any adhesion formed on or around the tendon, restore range of motion and decrease pain.