My both hands are really shakey. Starting in the middle of the workout and ending after five hours.

Why do they shake? What doest it mean? And is it normal?

  • What kind of workout is it and for how long are you doing it? Do you have any other problems (are overweight, new to exercising)?
    – Baarn
    Aug 12, 2013 at 13:43
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    Weight lifting. 4-5 times a week. 23yo. 174cm. 82kg. 1year experience. 4-5 execises per body part @ 3-4sets of 8-12 reps. One body part per day.
    – user6503
    Aug 12, 2013 at 14:04
  • 1
    Adrenalin can cause shaking hands, but not for 5+ hours. Low blood sugar is another possible cause - how much are you eating around your workouts? Aug 12, 2013 at 15:11
  • Do you take pre-workouts? Do you drink enough water? Perhaps just the fact that you go all out during the training exhausts you to a point that your hands shake (I've had that before)
    – Alex
    Aug 12, 2013 at 15:17
  • I do drink a lot of water and I do sweat a lot. Water is one way of keeping my body from getting warmer. I will try to eat more salt and drink more water. I'll report back.
    – user6503
    Aug 12, 2013 at 22:43

1 Answer 1


First, this is not immediate cause for alarm.

It is rather common as far as post-workout complications go, and is not, to my knowledge, an indicator of more serious problems.

Second, the reason for this.

Your skeletal muscles are controlled by motor nerves. Each motor nerve controls a large group of muscle cells. Of importance is that these groups overlap, each muscle cell is capable of receiving commands from more than one motor nerve.

As a large muscle contracts under normal circumstances, the nerves fire off one by one, creating a tight pattern that gives the illusion that the muscle as a whole is moving smoothly.

As fatigue sets in, some motor nerves are knocked out of action. As the muscle cell groups overlap, the muscle can still contract, but since there are now fewer neurons handling the muscle as a whole, the illusion of the contraction being smooth is damaged - the muscle moves in jerks.

Most people notice this most easily in the hands, as this is an area where we are used to having a very fine degree of motor control. Some notice it the most in the largest muscles (such as the quadriceps), as those muscles have a great number of muscle cells compared to the number of neurons to begin with.

Once the nerves are adequately rested, normal motor function resumes.

Third, it may be possible to "cure" this.

People have reported quite a few things that seem to aggravate post-workout trembling, and their direct solutions:

  • Dehydration. Solution: Drink more water.
  • Lack of electrolytes. Solution: Consume bananas/salt/Gatorade/your favorite replenisher.
  • Low blood sugar. Solution: Eat.
  • Lack of sleep. Solution: Sleep more.
  • Caffeine overconsumption. Solution: Drink less coffee/tea/soda.

Caveat: I am not a doctor. I am an amateur working from my memory of an article that I can't find any more. If the trembling is causing you discomfort, is chronic, or is verging on being full-on spasms and/or seizures, I suggest you see a doctor.

  • +1 for a nice summation. There are also some theories that there is excess neurotransmitter substance (acetylcholine) still in the nerve interstitial spaces, and this causes the trembling.
    – JohnP
    Aug 12, 2013 at 21:09
  • Thats right. My quadrices shake too while sitting after a leg session. I do drink 2-3 liters of water and exactly 2600 calories per day. 40-40-20 combination. I will try to eat more salt since I sweat aloooot. Maybe things get better. Thanks for your time.
    – user6503
    Aug 12, 2013 at 22:38
  • Update: I have increased my salt intake. It didnt really change anything, I just got thirstier. I increased sugar. Sugar from fruits. Especially one orange/banana after workout. Hands wont shake now. And god oranges make your skin look nice.
    – user6503
    Sep 13, 2013 at 18:07

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