Have you ever experienced a leg cramp? EeeeeOwwww! Nasty, eh?
I remember when I was a teen. I'd be sleeping away, peacefully. Suddenly I'd be jolted awake as searing pain grabbed my calf, squeezing the muscle and causing incredible pain. I thought it was the worse pain in the world. Of course, that's before I had the pleasure of experiencing the labor of child birth! Whoa baby...that one wins!
Back to leg cramps. You can't do anything about it, right? You're forced to freeze there and just bear it until it finally subsides. Just deal with it, right? Suck it up and endure the pain until the muscle relaxes and releases you from the agony, right?
Child birth may have been nasty business, but during those birthing classes, many years ago, our instructor knew that pregnant women are prone to leg cramps. She was a nurse and told our class one of the best secrets that medical professionals obviously know about, but had never told me before...or since for that matter.
What's worse is that my poor dad used to suffer from severe leg cramps. I wish I would have known this simple secret before he died so I could have helped him stop the pain. But maybe this article will help someone else out there.
This post idea came to me this morning, as I was stretching before I attempted to crawl out of bed. Suddenly, I felt a leg cramp starting. But before it could get its nasty claws into my muscle, I stopped it in its tracks.
How? Simple...toes to the nose!
A leg cramp causes the muscle to scrunch up. If you point your toes away from you, you give the muscle on the back of your leg even more slack, which allows it to squeeze up even tighter, thus causing you even more pain, as well as most likely letting the pain go on longer. What you need to do is stretch out the muscle so the cramp is stopped. To stretch out the muscle in your calf, you need to point your toes up toward your nose. This causes the muscle in the back of your leg to be pulled tight, thereby stopping the ability for the cramp to squeeze the muscle...which immediately stops the cramp! You need to point your toes to your nose quickly and tightly and hold it until you're sure the cramp is gone. If you relax your leg and start feeling the pain, pull those toes to your nose again.
Now understand, I'm not talking about actually touching your toes to your nose. That would look silly! The next time you get a leg cramp in the back muscle...your calf...quickly straighten your leg and point your toes up as tightly as you can and hold it. The term toes to your nose is just a simple rhyme to help you remember which direction to point. Even if you're awakened and the cramp is going full steam and you're afraid to move for fear of more pain...don't be afraid. Just pull those toes up so that you stretch out that back muscle and you'll instantly start to feel relief. In seconds, the cramp will be entirely gone.
I hope this helps someone out there stop the pain. I know it has for me. Since I learned this secret, I have never had a cramp last for more than a second or two before I've quickly stretched it out to stop it.