What's the deal with that sharp pain in your side when you're trying to win that marathon? SciShow has the answers!
Hosted by: Hank Green
Dooblydoo thanks go to the following Patreon supporters -- we couldn't make SciShow without them! Shout out to Justin Ove, Chris Peters, Philippe von Bergen, Fatima Iqbal, John Murrin, Linnea Boyev, Justin Lentz, and David Campos.
Like SciShow? Want to help support us, and also get things to put on your walls, cover your torso and hold your liquids? Check out our awesome products over at DFTBA Records: http://dftba.com/scishow
Or help support us by becoming our patron on Patreon:
Looking for SciShow elsewhere on the internet?
I get a pain often on my left or right side. Sometimes both at the same time. I've always called them side stitches but they seem to be higher than where a stitch would be so I'm not sure. They tend to be where my bra strap would be located. I get an intense, sharp pain that locks up my whole side but the pain is primarily in the region I spoke of. I get it even from doing simple things such as sneezing, coughing or laughing. If I stretch it also happens so I don't stretch as often as I should, in fear of the pain. I try deep breathing, it makes it worse. So it being that high up, would it be considered a side stitch? I've literally dealt was these for many many years... any info, help would be amazing. Sidenote.... these are things I've tried.... creams, Gatorade, more water, bananas, deep breathing and self massage. Thanks. Much Love 😁💚
Breathing right while running eliminates this altogether. It seems to be related to oxygen intake and expelling CO2 efficiently. People that run sometimes take rapid shallow breaths which gradually increases the CO2 levels causing cramps. In the Army I learned to use a couple different rhythms depending on if I was running alone or in cadence with the platoon.
When running alone, such as for a PT test, I used a 3/2 rhythm. inhaling for 3 steps and exhaling faster for 2. Before I figured out how to do that I ALWAYS got the side stitch. I ran a LOT in the Army and once I figured out how to breathe, I never got the side stitch again.
When doing cadence the pattern is a bit more complicated. Actually, the inhale happens more frequently in that case as you tend to inhale a couple times before exhaling to repeat back what the Drill Sergeant is 'singing.' To keep the rhythm, I usually went: 3 step inhale, 1 step partially exhale, 4 step deep inhale, 8 steps exhale while repeating back what the DS said.
Doing this one ends up exhaling for 9 steps while breathing in for 7, 4 of which are particularly deep. The key is just finding a good rhythm and breathing in a deep controlled way. This may work for a couple reasons. It may increase O2 in the blood stream, decreasing cramping in general. Or it may be that doing deeper breaths exercises the related side tendons and diaphram such that the muscles involved don't bounce around as much (tense core muscles). So all of the hypothetical causes in this video can be simultaneously correct.
Isn't this just one of the reason why we get side stitches. Few other I heard are; blood pumped into liver very fast causing pain especially if the liver is a little fatty. And the other is if you don't do good warm-up and stretching before cardio then you may get abdominal or back or neck or lateral muscle cramps that feel like side stitches. Or if you stomach-breathe which is aka diaphragmatic then your fast breathing can trigger it. Another one; due to gas or bloating or too much body weight.
I’m going into the military, and I’m scared to run in basic training now cuz this just happened to me recently, and I just ignored it for awhile but then it got so bad that I had to stop, I really hope this doesn’t happen again, does ANYONE actually know how to prevent the pain to even start??
Why aren't you mentioning the serratus anterior and the abdominals? Trigger points are real, and the serratus anterior muscle, which is located on the ribs and aids in breathing, can also cause a "stitch in the side" pain. Also, the abdominal obliques can cause a stitch-like pain in the abs region. You shouldn't overlook trigger points and their pain referrals. Bodywork therapists, including neuromuscular therapists, can help alleviate such pains in one or a few sessions. Our postures of sitting in front of computers, holding tablets and smart phones, playing games on consoles, and reading in bed are usually the culprit. Why go thru so much unnecessary testing and changes in diet when all it is is muscular pain referrals? And, yes, all of this is backed by physicians.
I once felt pain in my side so I ran faster and it went away. It came back the next day and I did the same. Now it stopped coming since I stopped running, but well... I now know the unhealthiest way to treat a side stitch.
I think the first option is the most likely, since our bodies are made to run and walk a lot and having organs that bounce around wouldn't help that cause. Also, feeling a pain in your sides because some organs wherever in your body rub together a bit is a bit of a weird explenation.
The only thing I ask is, how do they go away even if you keep going? I mean I went to Air Time once, it's a trampoline place with doge ball and jumping into fome pits and all that, and I got a stich but it went away after a bit even though I didn't stop
I personally think it has to do with something in your abdomin not getting enough blood flow do to redirection to your fight or flight system. I don't get stitches after being completely warmed up I only get them before I am warmed up and still pushing myself. The body redirects blood to power your muscles before your heart and lungs catch up and something in your abdomin gets HANGRY for oxygen.
I thought these were "oxygen cramps", and I was told that as your stamina increases, you get them less (never). When I used to run track (now I do treadmill/stairmaster/weights), I got into the habit of inhaling for n count, and exhaling for n+1 count to really empty out your lungs; at around 7<=n<=11, you're getting oxygen pretty efficiently.
Wow, had no idea this wasnt normal haha. I’ve always had these stitches since I can remember and always thought everyone got them. I was always bad at sport primarily because of this pain, even just walking after some time does this and it doesnt matter how fit and active I am its still just as bad. I just have to take exercise really easily.
When this happens in pe I will just use my hands and move my organs around it helps for a little bit then I have to move them again my family’s weird so if your wondering how I can do this just know I’m weird and my family is weird
I cant remember who said it (probs my biology teacher, probs not) but we apparently get it from lack of oxygen in the muscles, so the muscles produce energy without the usage of oxygen, but also release some sort of waste that makes this happen. Or was it something else?
The difference between our left and right side is what causes it. We do overlook our abdominal muscles and other smaller groups(mainly around the pelvis) involved while we strengthen only the big ones, like the quadriceps.
So when you’re running or cycling or swimming the core tries to balance this imbalance that rotates the core more than it should on side and this happens.
Exercise on all 4 axis of the leg,all abdominal and back muscles.
The class of drugs that Levitra, Viagra, Stendra, and Cialis belong to are called PDE5 inhibitors. They work by relaxing tight blood vessels, allowing more blood to surge into the penis and cause an erection, says Gregory Bales, M.D., an associate professor of urology at the University of Chicago.
The little pills do the trick for more than two-thirds of men with Viagra protects the heart (ED). They also work for guys who simply need them for a short time to get their “confidence back,” says Michael Eisenberg, M.D., director of male reproductive medicine and surgery at Stanford University.