Tag Archives: cramping science

Cramping Research – 574

World renown researcher and heat illness expert Dr. Sandra Fowkes-Godek returns to discuss Cramping Research.

Sandra Fowkes-Godek; Fowkes; Godek; Cramping Science Research
Anything heat illness…Dr. Fowkes-Godek is your expert

In our last conversation…

Dr. Fowkes-Godek covered a lot about blood levels, potassium overdoes, salt testing, IVs and ideal intake temperature.

Blood Chloride is one of the only things that changes during active cramps.

Mike McKenney mentioned it does not matter what science you have in the drink if it stay on the shelf or in the bottle. Cramping Research has to take into account the taste or drink-ability of the product or it is virtually useless.

Chloride, Chloride, Chloride

We keep pushing salt tablets and salty drinks.

Current cramping science research shows sodium and potassium levels to be the same before, during and after a cramp, yes during a full-body cramp they draw blood.

There are a few problems:
1. Chloride content is not on labels
2. Chloride requires a carrier like sodium, potassium or magnesium

Potassium can actually be toxic in the blood at high levels

So how do we get more Blood Chloride??

Mediterranean diets typically contain a high level

Seaweed

Feta Cheese

What about hot sauce?

It is similar to pickle juice in that it create a pharyngeal response.

But use caution as people who have been heavily exercising might not take kindly to hot sauce in their stomachs. If they start puking then you are compounding issues.

Are you Feeling Slushy????

Alyssa Brown asked about Thermoregulation and Cramping in the last podcast with Dr. Miller but we did not get to it.

Dr. Fowkes-Godek discusses how they keep a slushy machine in the facility for warm weather practices to help pre-lower the core body temperature.

Cramping Science research shows that the ones who get hot faster peak faster, finish slower and are more likely to cramp.

If you really want to make friends then get some Levelen and a slushy machine and have your players can perform better during warm temp games and practices.

Who's article is Dr. Fowkes-Godek reading?

Dr. Kevin Miller

Dr. Martin Schwellnus

other than that it is pretty lonely in the cramp world

Check the Facebook Live video

Want links to all of our recent Cramping Science podcasts?

Cramping Science with Dr. Kevin Miller

Cramping Science with Dr. Sandra Fowkes-Godek

NASA Engineered formula – The Right Stuff

Isotonic Drinks with Kari Beltran

Cramping Science Research with Dr. Sandra Fowkes-Godek

Neurology of a Cramp with Dr. Kevin Miller

These people LOVE ATs and help the SMB pay the bills:


Frio Hydration – Superior Hydration products.

MioTech – meeting all of your sports medicine supply needs

PhysicalTherapy.com – use promo code “1FREECOURSE” to start for free

DragonflyMax – one-stop EMR

HOIST – no matter your reason for dehydration DRINK HOIST

MedBridge Education – Use “TheSMB” to save some, be entered in a drawing for a second-year free and support the podcast.

McDonald; Dermoneuromodulation; Medbridge; CEUs Online CEUs; affiliate link
Use “TheSMB” to SAVE

Cramping Neurology – 573

In Cramping Science interview #1 with Dr. Kevin Miller, we did not even get to Cramping Neurology. We spent about 90 packed minutes discussing your questions and the role hydration plays in cramping.

Dr. Miller and Mike McKenney knew there was no way to do justice to cramping science without addressing the neurology component.

Cramp – an involuntary painful contraction of skeletal muscle brought on by a variety of factors. This podcast focuses on cramps related to the exercise of healthy individuals.

There is a teeter-totter between excitation and inhibition of the muscles from the nerves.

Cramping Neurology, nerve cell, axon, dendrite, Dr. Kevin Miller

What is Cramping Neurology?

Most basic definition: the role of the nervous system in cramping

About 8 minutes in Dr. Miller discusses the 3 main nerve cramp theories:

Central Theory –

This is the best supported through research stating the cramp occurs at the nerve cell body

There are two threshold levels for the cell body to cause a contraction known as a “bipolar state.”

Peripheral Theory –

Happens along the axon or end of the motor neuron.

We can stop a cramp from occurring by blocking the afferent activity with a nerve block to the tendon…but it is not always true.

Muscle Fiber Level Theory –

Least favorable among researchers but says that it happens at the muscle fiber level

Does the brain adjust and make the cramp easier?

Around minute 15 Mike asks if cramps can become a learned response from the brain

Of course, Dr. Kevin Miller has an answer that is helpful but not definitive

He does remind us:

  • each cramp is unique
  • there are many factors
  • frequent crampers need to know their triggers

Prefer to watch on Facebook Live?

Contact us:

Jeremy Jackson

Mike McKenney – email

Dr. Kevin Miller – email

These people LOVE ATs and help the SMB pay the bills:


Frio Hydration – Superior Hydration products.

MioTech – meeting all of your sports medicine supply needs

PhysicalTherapy.com – use promo code “1FREECOURSE” to start for free

DragonflyMax – one-stop EMR

HOIST – no matter your reason for dehydration DRINK HOIST

MedBridge Education – Use “TheSMB” to save some, be entered in a drawing for a second-year free and support the podcast.

Medbridge, Medbridge Ed, Medbridge education, Cramping Neurology, Dr. Kevin Miller

Want to see the rest of our cramping science podcasts?

Cramping Science with Dr. Kevin Miller

Cramping Science with Dr. Sandra Fowkes-Godek

NASA Engineered formula – The Right Stuff

Isotonic Drinks with Kari Beltran

Cramping Science Research with Dr. Sandra Fowkes-Godek

Neurology of a Cramp with Dr. Kevin Miller

Cramping Science with Dr. Fowkes-Godek 572

Dr. Sandra Fowkes Godek knows cramping science. If you go to her bio on Levelen you will see:

“Dr. Sandra Fowkes Godek is a world-renowned expert in Hydration Sports Science, with over a decade of research in thermoregulation, athlete sweat testing, and fluid & electrolyte replenishment. “

Sandra Fowkes-Godek; Fowkes; Godek; Cramping Science Research

Her West Chester University bio shows even more.

She is the director of the H.E.A.T. Institute

Truly if you want to nerdy out about cramping science read some of her research or find a way to connect with her.

So what about Cramping Science?

Man oh man oh man.

Dr. Fowkes-Godek is smart, quick and a great talker. the numbers and data she can just rattle of about cramping, chloride, potassium, sodium blood levels is amazing.

But she is fun to listen to and engaging.

What is even more she is coming back on the Sports Medicine Broadcast to continue discussing cramping science.

Some of her research with the Philadelphia Eagles included taking guys who were in active full body cramps and drawing blood. How's that for suffering for science.

She also spent hours making specialized drinks to help athletes replace what they lost.

If you can shake dried sweat off your shirt, then you are a salty sweater and need a little extra salt (without added potassium).

What about heat illness and cramping?

If we train people to drink when they are thirsty and give them free access to water we can almost assuredly avoid dehydration.

This does not mean heat exhaustion is only related to hydration

Cramping Science with Sandra Fowkes-Godek

Hopefully we can do some myth busting as we continue our research and discussion on cramping science with world leaders in cramping.Dr. Sandra Fowkes-Godek is one the worlds premiere heat-illness researchers. Ask your questions live or send them to us later.

Posted by Sports Medicine Broadcast on Friday, April 19, 2019

Contact Us

Mike McKenney – m.mckenney@northeastern.edu

Dr. Fowkes-Godek – SFowkes-Godek@wcupa.edu

Jeremy Jackson

These people LOVE ATs and help the SMB pay the bills:


Frio Hydration – Superior Hydration products.

MioTech – meeting all of your sports medicine supply needs

PhysicalTherapy.com – use promo code “1FREECOURSE” to start for free

DragonflyMax – one-stop EMR

HOIST – no matter your reason for dehydration DRINK HOIST

MedBridge Education – Use “TheSMB” to save some, be entered in a drawing for a second-year free and support the podcast.

Want to see the rest of our cramping science podcasts?

Cramping Science with Dr. Kevin Miller

Cramping Science with Dr. Sandra Fowkes-Godek

NASA Engineered formula – The Right Stuff

Isotonic Drinks with Kari Beltran

Cramping Science Research with Dr. Sandra Fowkes-Godek

Neurology of a Cramp with Dr. Kevin Miller

Cramping Science with Kevin Miller – 570

What do you know about Cramping Science?

I do not know a whole lot about Cramping Science, but luckily Mike McKenney and Dr. Kevin Miller are here to share tons of knowledge.

Who is Kevin Miller?

Dr. Kevin Miller is a Full Professor in the Athletic Training Program at Central Michigan University.  His research interests include the causes, treatments, and prevention of exertional heat illness with a specific emphasis on exercise-associated muscle cramping. 

He has published over 50 peer-reviewed manuscripts in medical journals and presented over 90 international, national, or regional presentations on topics related to heat illness. 

He has co-authored several national and international position statements including the NATA Position Statement on Exertional Heat Illness; the Statement of the Third International Exercise-Associated Hyponatremia Consensus Development Conference; and the NATA round table on Malignant Hyperthermia in Physically-Active Populations. 

Dr. Miller is a member of the Korey Stringer Institute’s Medical and Science Advisory Board; a member of the Editorial Boards for the Journal of Athletic Training; Exercise Physiology; Sport and Exercise Nutrition; and Athletic Training and Sports Health Care

He is Chair of the Michigan Athletic Trainers Society Research Assistance Committee; NATA liaison to the Canadian Athletic Therapists Association; and member of the NATA’s International Committee.

Did you get lost in all of those titles?

Like I said, I do not know a whole lot of TRUTH about cramping. So I am here to keep it simple and not too nerdy.

What to do when you are cramping:

The fastest way to “fix” a cramp is static stretching. If we prevent the muscle from shortening then we are preventing it from cramping.

Anything ingested is going to take about 10 minutes to provide relief…

Except small volumes of pickle juice seem to make them relax after about 90 seconds. So stretch and give pickle juice right away.

When a cramp starts, will it go away?

For about an hour after a cramp the threshold for cramping is decreased even if the muscle is no longer cramping, it is still standing on the edge.

Recommendations for preventing a cramp?

  • ask good questions
  • know that each patient and cramp is unique
  • look for trends
  • have them keep a cramp journal
  • start early in the day with fluid and sodium replacements
  • drink through out the day when thirsty

Want to see the rest of our cramping science podcasts?

Cramping Science with Dr. Sandra Fowkes-Godek

NASA Engineered formula – The Right Stuff

Isotonic Drinks with Kari Beltran

Cramping Science Research with Dr. Sandra Fowkes-Godek

Neurology of a Cramp with Dr. Kevin Miller

Contact Us

Dr. Kevin Miller – email – mille5k@cmich.edu

Mike McKenney – m.mckenney@neu.edu

Jeremy Jackson

These people LOVE ATs and help the SMB pay the bills:


Frio Hydration – Superior Hydration products.

MioTech – meeting all of your sports medicine supply needs

PhysicalTherapy.com – use promo code “1FREECOURSE” to start for free

DragonflyMax – one-stop EMR

HOIST – no matter your reason for dehydration DRINK HOIST

MedBridge Education – Use “TheSMB” to save some, be entered in a drawing for a second-year free and support the podcast.

Watch the Facebook Live

Cramping Science with Kevin Miller

Mike McKenney studied under Kevin Miller. Both are making an impact in the way we understand hydration.Kevin has a long list of hydration and cramping related articles and committee involvement.Join the conversation as part of a series on Cramping Science on the Sports Medicine Broadcast

Posted by Sports Medicine Broadcast on Tuesday, April 9, 2019