Top tips to avoid cramps after training

Published March 31, 2014

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Physical exercise may sometimes cause painful muscle cramps in otherwise healthy people. They are relatively common and can affect both recreational and elite athletes. They usually occur in single muscles such as the triceps, quadriceps and hamstrings. Muscle cramps are easily recognisable as they cause acute pain, stiffness, visible knotting of the affected muscle and soreness that may last for several days.1 Even though muscle cramps are common, they don’t have to be a normal part of your exercise routine.

In order to help reduce muscle cramps from occurring, it’s important to know what may be triggering them. Although their exact cause is unknown, certain factors may increase your risk of experiencing one (or more) after exercise.
These include:2

  • Physical overexertion
  • Exertion of cold muscles
  • Dehydration
  • Excessive perspiration
  • Inadequate diet

It is therefore important that you include regular stretching into your exercise routine and warm up and cool down properly also. Ensure you are well hydrated by drinking plenty of water before, during and after your exercise session.2 An electrolyte replacement formula may also be helpful, especially during hot weather or a particularly intense training session. Make sure to eat a well balanced diet including plenty of protein, fruit and vegetables.2 If you do experience a muscle cramp after exercise, try to gently stretch and rub the muscle to try to relieve it. You can also apply a heating pack to the affected area to warm and relax cramping muscles.3

Certain supplements may also help to maintain healthy muscle function. Nature’s Own™ Magnesium Chelate 500mg and Nature’s Own™ Magnesium Orotate 400mg both contain magnesium, which is needed for normal muscle and nerve function and helps to relieve painful muscle spasms and cramps. Regular strenuous exercise or extreme physical exertion may also increase the body’s need for magnesium.

Learn about which Nature's Own product may be appropriate for you.

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