Posted by: Ang | 2003/01/15


Hi there

I'm into my second week of training for this year, I do Spinning in the evening and on a Saturday morning. I missed a class and decided to use the stationary bike for about 20 mins. After the bike I got onto the treadmill (moderate pace, slight incline) and had to stop after 10 minutes because my calves where cramping. I can usually walk for about 25 mins. Is there something I can add to my diet to stop the cramping?


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Hi Ang

Theories that dehydration and electrolyte imbalances cause cramping during exercise, are not well supported by scientific research. Only if you have, for example, a magnesium deficiency, might magnesium supplementation help. In fact the main factors associated with cramping appear to be inadequate training and/or stretching, older age, running long distances or performing high volume training sessions as well as a family history of cramping (Prof Tim Noakes “Lore of Running”). There is convincing evidence that cramping is due to a neuromuscular problem i.e. the stretch reflex that normally prevents excessive muscle contraction ceases to function properly. If this is correct, then the best way to break this cycle is to stretch the cramping muscle.

I also suggest you implement a daily stretching programme and focus on your calf muscles. Many of us have a predisposition to cramping in a certain muscle.
I hope this helps.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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