Why Do I Shake My Leg When Sitting?

Shake My Leg When Sitting

While sitting down, have you ever experienced or have someone notice that you shake your leg a lot. You may have wondered, “why do I shake my leg when sitting?”

Shaking your leg while sitting is nothing to worry about, and it is not very dangerous. But there are numerous causes for it.

Some reasons for your legs shaking boil down to anxiety or restlessness, while other reasons may include certain conditions. This article will go through some of the most common causes of your legs shaking and give advice where possible on how to better deal with it.

Reasons Why People Might Shake Their Legs while Sitting

Although some causes aren’t threatening, a proper diagnosis or advice from a doctor is always necessary. Keeping this in mind, let’s see what can cause these tremors to arise.

  • Anxiety and Stress

If you only occasionally find your leg trembling or shaking in certain situations, it might be a result of anxiety or stress. Stressful situations can trigger the fight or flight response in your body, which can end up causing you to be jittery.

You might find your leg shaking vigorously during high tension situations.

This can be occupied by unsteady breathing and sweat. Addressing the anxiety and learning how to deal with it can help you stop your leg from shaking.

The best method to do this is by practicing stress management techniques.

Meditating and deep breathing exercises help the most, and it is recommended to practice them if you suffer from anxiety. Relaxing activities like a therapeutic massage and a relaxing bath can also help to relieve stress. 

  • Restlessness

Shaking your leg might often stem from being restless and not having an outlet for it. Hyperactive people will often shake their legs if they’re sitting down and having to wait for a long time without doing anything.

If you’re used to being in an environment with various stimuli to bombard your senses with, a sudden lack of it might cause this to happen.

The best way to deal with this is to ultimately relieve the restlessness via activity. Taking a small jog or run will help with the restlessness. You can also do other forms of exercise and also practice deep breathing exercises to feel less restless.

  • Caffeine 

If you drink a lot of coffee, you might find your legs shaking more when you’re sitting down. Heavy intake of caffeine can cause your body to feel agitated. This effect is not exclusive to only coffee as other analeptics or stimulants like nicotine can also have this effect on your body.

Caffeine energizes and stimulates the body but taken in a high enough concentration, it can not only lead to your legs trembling but also other harmful effects.

The simple solution to avoid this is making sure you’re avoiding powerful analeptics and controlling your caffeine intake. It is recommended that you have no more than 400 milligrams of caffeine per day. This equates to three cups of coffee a day.

  • Restless Leg Syndrome

There are some conditions that can result in your legs shaking when sitting. Restless leg syndrome is one of those conditions. While restless leg syndrome doesn’t exactly cause you to shake your legs while sitting, it instead causes you to have an incredible urge to move your legs.

When sitting or sleeping, this uncontrollable urge can cause you to shake your legs.

Patients with restless leg syndrome tend to feel a crawling sensation in their legs—the urge to move your legs increases when you’re in a relaxed position.

Although restless leg syndrome causes you to shake your leg when sitting, the main issue of RLS is that it can interfere with your sleep and cause sleep deprivation.

For RLS, there isn’t a medication you take that will instantly make the symptoms go away. The best you can do is to do some daily exercise, make use of an ice pack, and take prescribed medicine from your doctor.

  • ADHD

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a disorder that makes it difficult for people to pay attention and makes them very active and restless. People suffering from ADHD might often end up shaking their legs when they’re forced to sit down and wait as they are very hyperactive.

Once again, there is no instant cure-it-all for ADHD. There are some medicines that can help with the symptoms, but behavioral therapy has been seen to work the best. You can also try out yoga as it has been reported to help people with ADHD.

  • Tremors

Your legs can shake due to involuntary muscle contractions. These are known as tremors and can arise due to a wide range of issues and can vary in severity. They can occur periodically and can happen when you’re sitting down.

Some medical conditions like multiple sclerosis can result in tremors. Tremors can also be hereditary, according to some studies. It can prove very serious, and so medical diagnosis is very important, and a doctor should always be consulted. In most cases, proper medication is the only solution.


Besides these reasons, there can be other reasons as to why your leg shakes when sitting, but these are what we find to be the most common reasons. While the causes do vary in terms of how severe they can be, it’s not recommended to neglect or take them likely. Consult a doctor as soon as possible.

And let us know if you found the answer to your question, “why do I shake my leg when sitting?”.

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