Why Do Muscles Shake and Twitch?

Why Do Muscles Twitch!?

Do you know someone or yourself who has had serious shaky muscles during a workout?

Have you ever wondered why muscles shake like crazy sometimes?

Almost everyone that has experienced a hard workout can relate to this, especially if you did something new for the first time like a cycling class, stair workout, or a crazy exercise class (F45 or Crossfit perhaps)!.

But why does this happen?

Let us explore some of the reasons below

There are multiple theories as to why muscles shake, when you search the internet you may come across:

  1. dehydration

  2. electrolyte/metabolite imbalance

  3. lack of sleep

  4. muscle damage

  5. muscle fatigue

  6. substantial muscle demand

  7. overdoing it

It is more than likely the contribution of multiple factors in a given scenario that will lead to super shaky muscles. However, a common denominator in almost every single scenario is FATIGUE. Whether the muscle is overworked, there is a substantial amount of central or peripheral fatigue accumulation, or the demand is greater than the capacity fatigue is going to occur. High levels of fatigue/effort are more than likely contributing to this shaky effect.

What is important to understand is that on a daily basis our muscles are always working. However, the muscle contraction is smooth and easy to control when there isn’t a lot of fatigue/effort. BUT, when there is significant fatigue/effort, and I mean SIGNIFICANT there is likely a cascade of events (metabolite accumulation, central/peripheral fatigue, changes in neuromuscular firing patterns, changes in energy availability) sometimes you will get this shaky muscle effect.

I have experienced this in the past when I was training legs at the gym for over 2 hours at a time twice to three times a week which lead to an increase in muscle wastage and benign muscle spasms.

If you have been having chronic muscle shakes and twitches it's best to see your allied health professional (GP) to get some blood tests done to assess your vitamins, minerals and blood work to make sure the body isn't in high levels of stress and fatigue.

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