Muscle cramps can strike just about anywhere. Oftentimes, you will have an attack of muscle cramps at work that can really throw off your day. Fortunately, there are a few simple ways to deal with muscle cramps while you’re working using some of the many benefits of massage.
What Causes Cramps?
Cramps can be caused by a variety of different processes in your body. Most often they are associated with dehydration, low sodium, and low carb intake. The result is that a single muscle group may suddenly and unexpectedly contract, causing you pain, and you will be unable to force it to relax.
How to Deal with Muscle Cramps
In the heat of the moment, drinking more water probably won’t help. However, if you notice that you are getting muscle cramps closer and closer together, it’s a sure sign that you need more water. You may also want to try drinking a sports drink like Gatorade that has a bit of sodium in it as well. That will kill two birds with one stone.
The one thing you shouldn’t do is continue flexing the muscle. The more times you try to force it to flex and relax, the more irritated the tissue will become and the tighter it will get. If you’ve ever had a cramp in your foot, you know this is true. Instead, the best thing to do is sit back, take a deep breath, and then gently massage the area with your hands. Using your thumbs to massage the cramped muscle in small circular motions will cause it to slowly release tension without making it worse.
Another common form of massage that may be easier is to use a foam roller. You can buy a half-size foam roller for use in the office that is perfect for rolling out major muscle groups in your legs and back. The roller works like a tenderizer, slowly applying pressure across the entire length of the muscle, causing it to flatten out and release tension. It only takes about 30 seconds of rolling to really ease the discomfort. As always, when you are done with your mini massage, you will still need to stay properly hydrated.
Cramps don’t have to be a major setback in your day. Performing a massage on your cramped muscle can help ease the pain and get you back to work in no time. This is just one of the many benefits of massage that anyone can appreciate.
To learn more about how you can better your employees well-being, we encourage you to review our lunch and learn workshops.