... I regretted pulling that hangnail.
When I first got golfer’s elbow two months ago, I was surprised that a lot of the resources that come up when you google it are contradictory, out-of-date, or just really, really long-winded. The Climb Harder Wiki has a good list of the best resources. After combing through material, and talking to doctors, physiotherapists, and experienced climbers, I’d just like to assemble some of the main take-aways. This is an active area of research and knowledge seems to be changing quickly. If I get anything wrong, or miss anything, let me know and I’ll edit the list to make this as accurate and helpful as possible.
I am not a medical expert. Whenever there is a contradiction between anything I write and actual experts, trust them. If you have an injury, you should book an appointment with a doctor or physio.
Rest = Bad
If you stop climbing for many weeks or months, it will make the pain from golfer’s elbow disappear, but the pain will just come back when you start climbing again — even if you wait months. Tendons need to be stimulated through exertion to heal. The challenge, therefore, is to do exercises that stimulate them in just the right amount without making the problem worse.
You should still rest as per normal, and it's good to take it easy climbing, as I note below.
Stretching doesn’t help
The only time that stretching may help is if the forearm muscle is so tight that it is not letting the tendon go loose enough to heal. So, this stretch from Tom Randall might be helpful if you have a tight forearm. Otherwise, it’s probably irrelevant.
The usual stuff: sleep lots, eat well, exercise.
Dave MacLeod is right: full nights of sleep are super important for healing. Don’t take this lightly. I’m sure food matters too. Cardio is probably helpful. In general, be healthy.
Consistent Rehab Exercises