What Causes Side Stitches? EndurElite Chief Endurance Officer Matt Mosman discusses what causes side stitches and cramps during exercise and how to prevent them from happening.
Ever wonder what causes side stitches during exercise and how to prevent them?
If a side stitch does happen, increase your breathing by inhaling and exhaling deeply, slow down and exhale to release the stitch, press your hand on the stitch while exhaling, or stop and stretch it out.
Full Video Transcription:
Ever wondered what causes side stitches during exercise and how to prevent them? That is gonna be the topic of our 60-second Brain Power for today.
Now, a side stitch almost feels like a massive cramp in your side that can happen while you're exercising. They can be pretty debilitating.
Now, while no one knows the exact cause of side stitches, there's a couple of different theories, the first being this. When you start exercising, there's an increase in abdominal pressure coupled with the expansion of the lungs from breathing harder, and this is thought to possibly kind of pinch off oxygen and blood flow to the diaphragm that will lead to the side stitch. The other theory is that the parietal peritoneum becomes irritated during exercise, and this can lead to a side stitch as well.
So, now that we know what possibly causes a side stitch, how do you prevent them? Real quick. Eat your last meal about two to three hours beforehand. Avoid really sugary drinks beforehand. And then when you start exercising, warm up gradually. And if a side stitch does happen, there's a few different things you can do. You can exhale really hard, you can put pressure on the spot of the side stitch, or you can stretch it out.