Why You Suffer from Leg Pain After Sitting for Too Long

According to The Heart Foundation, over a quarter of American adults sit for eight hours or more every day. Additionally, nearly half of these people don’t get any exercise at all.


While sitting for a few hours may not seem like a big deal, prolonged periods of sitting can lead to serious health consequences. Sitting for prolonged periods can lead to weight gain, weak legs and glutes, anxiety and depression, an increased risk of developing cancer or diabetes, and varicose veins.


It can also lead to pain in your legs. But, why do your legs hurt when you sit for long periods of time? Is there anything you can do to remedy this issue?


Keep reading to find out why sitting too long and leg pain.

Why Your Legs Hurt After Sitting Too Long

While it’s never a good idea to sit for prolonged periods of time, due to the modern office, many of us are forced to sit at our desks for hours at a time. Because so many people are working from home nowadays, the prolonged periods of sitting have only gotten worse.


In a “normal” office, you get up to grab some water, speak to a coworker, attend a meeting, or break in the lunchroom. All of these small movements and steps throughout the day add up. But, if you’re working from home, you’re likely just sitting on the couch or at the desk all day without much movement.


This lack of movement can lead to pain in your legs. For many people, this pain is light and they can work it out with a good stretch and quick watch. However, this pain may signal an underlying condition or more serious issue.

Here are some of the reasons why your legs may hurt after sitting for too long:

Psoriatic Arthritis

a picture of feet

Psoriatic arthritis is one of the most common reasons why your legs may hurt after sitting too long. If you suffer from psoriatic arthritis, you may notice that your body feels like it’s seizing up after sitting for too long.

Psoriatic arthritis is a condition that occurs when the immune system attacks healthy tissues and cells. In turn, this causes your joints to become painful and swollen.

While it’s not entirely clear why this happens, many doctors believe it’s due to genetic and environmental factors. Signs that you’re suffering from psoriatic arthritis include:

  • Swelling, stiffness, or pain in one or more joints
  • Pain in and around your ankles and feet
  • Warm and red joints

Those who suffer from psoriasis are also more likely to suffer from psoriatic arthritis.

Related: What is the Difference Between Osteoarthritis and Rheumatoid Arthritis?


Shin Splints


Shin splints can also lead to leg pain when sitting for too long. Typically, shin splint pain occurs right in the front of your calf muscles.

When these muscles become inflamed, it can hurt to sit, walk, stand, or jump. Shin splints usually occur after engaging in repeated activity on a hard surface. For example, skiing, running on a treadmill, or snowboarding can cause shin splints.


Related: Skiing with a Torn ACL: Tips for Recovery


Blood Clots


Blood clots can also cause pain in your lower leg, and these clots are more likely to occur in people who spend hours at a time sitting. You’re also at risk if you smoke, are overweight, or take certain medications.

Blood clots are a serious health risk, as there’s a chance the clot could break off into your bloodstream and move to your lungs, resulting in a pulmonary embolism.


Nerve Damage


Nerve damage can also cause pain in your legs when sitting. For example, a bone spur or herniated disc can cause your spine to put pressure on your nerves, which can lead to sciatica.

Those who suffer from sciatica often experience a cramping or burning leg pain when sitting or standing. You may also experience tingling, numbness, weakness, and fatigue.


Other Issues


There are some other issues that can cause leg pain when sitting, which include:

  • Diabetic neuropathy
  • Varicose Veins
  • Tendinitis

Muscle cramps or lack of muscle recovery can also cause pain in your legs.

Are you experiencing pain in your big toe as well as your legs? Click here to find out what’s going on!


How to Deal With Leg Pain from Sitting Too Long


Just because you suffer from leg pain doesn’t mean it has to ruin your life. There are remedies you can try to heal your leg pain, including:


CBD/Hemp Products


The compounds in CBD and hemp can offer muscle and joint pain relief. In fact, a recent study published in The European Journal of Pain showed that topical CBD could help lower inflammation and pain due to arthritis.

The best thing about CBD and hemp is that while they come from the cannabis plant, they don’t have psychoactive properties like THC. This means that you can use CBD and hemp products without worrying about getting high. But, it can make you feel more relaxed. And, these products are legal in all 50 states.

Looking for a CBD pain relieving cream for your legs? Click here to check out this product!

a pair of shoes and weights

Stretching is another great way to relieve leg pain. We suggest taking a break every couple of hours to stretch your quads, hamstrings, calves, and shins.

If you’re experiencing additional pain from stretching, you may want to speak to a chiropractor.


Walking Around


If you’re sitting too much, your muscles may cramp up and cause you pain. To prevent this from happening, get up and walk around every once in a while.

For every hour of work, try to get up and walk around for a few minutes. Even if you can just walk around your apartment, it can make a big difference.

Related: Is Walking Good for SI Joint Pain?


Are You Ready to Heal Your Leg Pain?

As you can see, leg pain from sitting doesn’t have to be something that plagues your life. There are remedies for leg pain, and making use of these remedies will allow you to live a healthier life.

Of course, you should also speak to your doctor about any prolonged leg pain you’re experiencing.