T Nation

Potassium For Cramping???


OK, so here?s my issue. During the day I?m a computer geek who lift?s weights on my lunch break. I eat pretty well, actually I eat very well during the week and sorta slack a bit on the weekends, but not too bad.

On the weekends I?m a drummer for a band. We play most every weekend, at times both nights, Friday and Saturday. I?ve been having issues the last few weeks with my forearms and calves cramping up, pretty bad too? I almost had to stop a couple weeks ago because it got so bad?

Anyway, a few people I told this to asked if I was hydrated enough. I assume so I drink a bunch of water or green tea, like all the time. Between the 2 I probably get anywhere from 1-2 gallons of liquid each day, so ?I think? I?m good there?

The other thing that was brought up with Potassium, Potassium is in my multi-vitamin that I take every day, I do forget on weekend sometimes : | and there?s a bunch of Potassium in Grow. I normally have 4 scoops of Grow and/or ?M? each day.

I guess should I look into getting more Potassium? How much should I take? If I take too much it shouldn?t harm me anyway will it? How should I get it? Drink a protein shake before I play, or get some Potassium supplements or eat a bunch of bananas??? Thoughts???




From what I know potassium supplementing can be dangerous. The reason is because too much or too little potassium causes your heart to stop.

Off the cuff, my guess is that at Calcium/Magnesium supplement will be safer and more effective. Vitamin C speeds the uptake of the Cal/Mag if memory serves.

BTW, I am not a liscensed medical doctor or nutritionist and these suggestions are what I have found to be effective for my own cramping and tendonitis. :wink:


If you are thinking your K level is down then I'll reiterate something someone told me:

"Go eat some banannas."

It helps.


Are you periodically drinking water as you play for long periods of time?


In my experience of severe in game cramping, adding extra sodium to a normal electrolyte does the trick.


Hey nice to meet a fellow drummer. I do session work for extreme metal/death metal bands in NY and I just love this forum. From what I know about cramping, it could be lactic acid related but I could be wrong. Sometimes dehydration could cause cramping as well. I don't know if you play with a fan near you but I don't like doing that because it doesn't allow the muscles and ligaments to stay warm. Keep it hot!!! Good luck with your playing and if you have a website with your band, kindly put up a link and I'll check it out.


yes best bet is to get it from food. bananas, cabbage, and many others are high in it. Also like other said hydration and also sodium/salt as well.


Go to GNC and buy some "Potassium & Magnesium Aspartate 250". I take 3 at one time once a day. Watch how much magnesium you take though. There are limits of safety here.

I had terrible foot and occasionally leg cramps. This product took care of it. Inexpensive too. Only thing I buy at GNC cause I get all my other stuff here.

I stay hydrated too. Bananas never did shit for my cramps. I eat them though cause I like em'. Anyways try it out. If it doesn't work for you you are only out about $13.00.


If the potasssium supp doesn't help or eating more bananas / tomatoes, then try some Taurine freeform caps.

Before some luddite flames me, Taurine is well documented in the prevention of painful muscle cramps.