Tips to Minimize Cramping
Proper hydration and adequate consumption of certain things can keep you from getting cramps.
No More Muscle Cramping with These Tips
It is no secret that hydration is key to proper body functioning and a relevant part of a dancer’s performance. Even when you’re not thirsty, water intake should not be neglected.
Why Is Hydration So Important?
Your body needs water to work properly. Muscle composition in a healthy body is over 70% water. Water intake doesn’t only depend on you drinking water out of a glass or bottle, you can eat fruits and vegetables that are high in water, or add smoothies and soups into your diet. It’s always good to remember that by the time you are thirsty, you’re already dehydrated. With dehydration comes lack of balance and fatigue, and you might even experience lightheadedness and headaches.
Your Body Needs Electrolytes
Electrolytes are essential to several bodily functions. The ones our bodies need the most are potassium, sodium and chloride, supported by magnesium and calcium. Electrolytes are there to support your muscles during certain actions like when they contract and release. When your body lacks those electrolytes, you are likely to experience muscle cramping. An average person rarely lacks sodium in their diet but other electrolytes are often neglected. However, if you find that you are prone to muscle cramping, you should definitely be mindful of including them through various dietary sources.
5 Potassium-Rich Foods
- White beans
- Coconut water
- Acorn squash
5 Calcium-Rich Foods
- Cow milk or almond milk
- Chia seeds
5 Magnesium-Rich Foods
- Dark leafy greens like spinach, kale or collard greens
- Nuts and seeds
- Beans or legumes
- Meat or fish
- Dark chocolate (hooray!)
More Tips to Avoid Muscle Cramping
- Avoid foods or beverages that cause dehydration, like alcohol and caffeine.
- Stretch and foam roll to keep your muscles flexible.
- Make sure you follow a balanced nutrition plan.
Follow these tips and increase your chances of perceiving the benefits in your next dance class. Happy cramp-free dancing!