Muscle Cramps: Why Do We Experience Them?


muscle cramps

Why Do We Experience Muscle Cramps?

If you are someone who exercises, even on an occasional basis, you have more than likely experienced muscle cramps while doing so at one time or another. Cramping of the muscles has been a longtime nemesis to the casual enthusiast as well as the professional athlete.

For years, it’s cause has been associated with dehydration, but a relatively new study published a couple of years ago suggested that dehydration levels were irrelevant. The subjects in the study had electronic stimulation applied to their muscles in order to contract them, and the subjects were all measured fully hydrated, as well as during varying levels of dehydration. The results were the same regardless of the level of hydration.

New thinking is suggesting that the reason for muscle cramps could be from over stimulation of the nerve endings. In other words, fatigue. A tired muscle is much more likely to involuntarily contract than a counterpart which has not been brought to exhaustion. These findings still need to be replicated within other studies or else it’s just more folklore, like the theory that drinking pickle juice will ward off muscle cramps.

This still raises the question concerning the intake of fluids and the subsequent cramping that can occur. Usually that would be in the abdominal region, but it is hard to believe that the abdominal muscles play a big part in digestion and the absorption of fluids. That too is another fitness myth that is completely unfounded, without merit, and without any scientific backing. Furthermore, it’s just plain is ridiculous.

Ultimately science and common sense will prevail. I would be sure to be hydrated, for a myriad of reasons, and I would be sure not to overdo it, for a different myriad of reasons. The pickle juice, however, I would be sure to pass on.

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Andy
My name is Andy Bruchey and I founded Complete Fitness Design over 20 years ago. I specialize in weight loss/gain, including the addition of quality, lean muscle mass, corrective flexibility, post injury rehabilitation, nutrition and sports specific training.
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Muscle Cramps
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Muscle Cramps
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Austin personal trainer Andy Bruchey weighs in on the subject of muscle cramps, and what causes them.
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Andy Bruchey- Complete Fitness Design
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About Andy

My name is Andy Bruchey and I am a longtime Austin personal trainer having founded Complete Fitness Design over 20 years ago. I specialize in weight loss/gain, including the addition of quality, lean muscle mass, corrective flexibility, post injury rehabilitation, nutrition, and sports specific training for professionals. Contact me today to see how I can help you!
3100 W Slaughter Ln Austin , Texas 78748 512-484-2270