Flexor and extensor muscle-tendon unit activity at the elbow during the golf swing was recorded from subjects with and without medial epicondylitis. There was no significant difference in total swing time between symptomatic (1.23 +/- 0.15 sec) and asymptomatic (1.15 +/- 0.13 sec) subjects nor between golfers with low (1 to 6 handicap, N = 8) and high (11 to 19 handicap, N = 8) scoring abilities. Symptomatic and asymptomatic subjects displayed similar electromyographic profiles for flexor and extensor muscles of the forearm. Electromyographic activity of the common extensor muscles was persistent throughout the four swing phases, ranging from 33.59% of maximum voluntary contraction at address to 58.77% at contact. Common flexor muscles produced a consistent burst of electromyographic activity during contact phase (flexor burst, 90.77% of maximum voluntary contraction). Symptomatic subjects' mean flexor muscle electromyographic activity was significantly greater than that of asymptomatic subjects in both address and swing phases. When forearm brace and oversized grips were imposed on symptomatic subjects, there was no significant difference in mean electromyographic magnitude or muscle activation pattern during the golf swing. Thus, the method of symptomatic relief of the intervention strategies tested is still in question.