View Full Version : Leg shaking

09-30-05, 10:01 PM
Does anyone else out there suffer from chronic leg shaking while sitting down.....almost as if you have your leg on idle?

09-30-05, 10:06 PM
Ahhhhh....a favorite subject of mine. I often wonder how many calories I'm actually burning a day by having my legs shake. My legs go constantly. I can stop them for a while by pressing my feet flat on the floor, but that doesnt seem to hold them for very long.

09-30-05, 11:08 PM
I am always shaking my leg. It drives my family and friends nuts. They think it is a nervous thing but its not.

10-01-05, 12:00 AM
I do the same thing too. Even if 'm fidgeting with a pencil or something with my fingers, it's a sure bet that my leg is shaking too. It doesn't really drive my friends nuts, now they've just gotten used to it.

10-01-05, 02:13 AM
I do it so much its like second nature, i dont know why, its just going like crazy and i dont even know im doing it, that is untill someone points it out and i feel a little emarassed.

Trooper Keith
10-01-05, 02:21 AM
Yeap. The worst part is that I tend to lean forward while I I end up rocking my entire body because my leg is shaking, and I'm propped on it. I used to wonder why I never saw anyone else fidgetting. I remember telling my gym teacher once in health class that I don't need to work out, I burn calories constantly shaking my leg...turns out to be mostly true, eh? Of course, back then I didn't realize I was a weirdo.

10-01-05, 02:45 AM
I do the same thing, and lean forward, every now and then. funny eh?

10-01-05, 08:03 AM
I also do this, always have, but I wouldn't say it's chronic. Sometimes I do it pretty loudly too, as if shaking my leg wasn't enough, I have to make noise. It is always with my right leg, and there are times it's so strong the rest of my body shakes too, just a bit tt ttttt ttttttttttt.

10-01-05, 10:42 AM
This drives my wife insane. What's worse is when we're sitting at a table and I have my foot against a leg of the table and it makes the whole table shake real subtly... I don't even realize it's happening until she bursts out with "THE LEG!!"

10-01-05, 10:43 AM
I think that's what I do. While sitting, specially if I'm bored or nervous my legs are moving. Most of the time I'm not even aware I'm doing it till someone says " OMG will you stop that" :o

10-01-05, 10:45 AM
This drives my wife insane. What's worse is when we're sitting at a table and I have my foot against a leg of the table and it makes the whole table shake real subtly... I don't even realize it's happening until she bursts out with "THE LEG!!"

" the leg" I like that ;)

10-01-05, 11:57 AM
So do we think this is just an ADD thing or do others do this as well???

10-01-05, 12:25 PM
it's probably something a lot of people do, a lot of kids for sure. When you are an adult and you're sitting down and your legs are shaking like you were getting paid for it then it's not so normal, although not necessarily connected to ADD. I dont know why i said before it's only the right leg. I definetely do it with both. I doesnt feel that bad though. It gets some kind of mental process going for me and it's even pleasant.

10-01-05, 12:59 PM
it happens to me allot unless i keep my feet flat on the floor. you have to be balnced right in the chair.

10-01-05, 01:22 PM
I do it all the time as well but never really thought much of it till one day my grandmother had my 6 week old baby on her lap and she was doing it so hard I was scared she was going to give him shaken baby syndrom lol. That is when I started taking notice of my habit,,,, I just assumed it was a bordem thing.

10-01-05, 07:37 PM
I do it a lot. It's on a list somewhere as a manifestation of the hyperactivity and was one of the things on my diagnosis list. I wasn't diagnosed as a kid (now am in my late 50's and just diagnosed a year ago). I rest my feet on the toes and jiggle my legs rapidly up and down. Also cross my legs and swing the one on top. And at the doctor's when I have to sit on the examining table or anywhere else my feet can't reach the floor, I swing both legs. And in bed my legs move a lot until I get to sleep, especially when I'm uncomfortable or in pain. Maybe similar to the tendency to always be fiddling with my fingers and hands--never still. My daughter can't sit still anywhere without playing with her fingers, picking at the cuticles or nails, or biting her fingers, rubbing her face, etc, and I do some of that too.

Seeing it on the list of symptoms--and many of the other symptoms--really was an awakening. So many things I'd wondered about were explained for the first time. Things you wouldn't think were worth asking about, just part of you, happened for a reason, like mild dyslexia and directional confusion.

PS I'm new here, don't know how I missed this place for the past year, since I did a lot of searches, but am so glad I finally found it.


Bean Delphiki
10-01-05, 07:57 PM
I do it a lot. It's on a list somewhere as a manifestation of the hyperactivity and was one of the things on my diagnosis list. I wasn't diagnosed as a kid (now am in my late 50's and just diagnosed a year ago). I rest my feet on the toes and jiggle my legs rapidly up and down. Also cross my legs and swing the one on top. And at the doctor's when I have to sit on the examining table or anywhere else my feet can't reach the floor, I swing both legs. And in bed my legs move a lot until I get to sleep, especially when I'm uncomfortable or in pain. Maybe similar to the tendency to always be fiddling with my fingers and hands--never still.
All of that is me to a T, heh. Although I'm not hyperactive.

10-01-05, 07:58 PM
I do a good bit of leg jiggling also a lot of small movements with my hand. Mine is from ADHD. My husband does his leg a lot in bed or when sitting still -- the doctor says his is restless leg syndrome. It interferes with quality sleep for him at night. I looked it up and apparently there may be some connection with restless leg syndome and ADHD according to the site I looked at -- at least more ADHDers have it.


10-01-05, 07:58 PM
getting rid of the hyperactivity is one reason, but it also puts your brain in thinking gear. There are lots of studies on movement and learning and guess what/ People learn better when movement is involved...even leg and foot shaking. i generally only shake my foot unless I'm in the position. I have a student that I can guage how much thought he's putting into his work by his leg and sitting position.when he's really engaged he looks like a runner about to take off from the blocks. HIS right leg is actually bent so that his knee is almost on the floor.

I remember in high scool a guy that bounced so hard it shook the foors. I'm a foot shaker. i cross my feet at the ankles and it just starts.. I also shake my feet at night. I find it soothing.

10-02-05, 10:45 PM
I have always done this also. It helps to calm me, it was great when my kids were babies, I could bounce them to sleep in no time. I have inattentive add, the only thing about me that is hyperactive is my leg......

10-04-05, 06:53 AM
Lol... this is so true.. I shake my leg when I lift the heel up from the floor. Guess that's the reason my calfs are big =) Peopel seem to be frustrated when I do this.

I've thought about this movement and learning.... I can think diamond clear with music and headbanging... yeah it's sad... but I think a cool solution for ADD people would be to have like treadmills and having lessons while walking. =)

Far Wanderer
10-04-05, 11:49 AM
yep, I am a leg shaker too -sheesh that sounds so strange

10-04-05, 12:40 PM
There are lots of studies on movement and learning and guess what/ People learn better when movement is involved...even leg and foot shaking.
I don;t think it has much to do with the learning process....I'm doing it even when I'm just sitting down doing eating...

10-05-05, 06:07 PM
I don't do the leg-shaking thing, but it is one of those things that drives me nuts! If someone around me is doing it, and I can feel it, I get so mad I want to freak-out/cry/punch them in the throat or something. I can't concentrate when they're doing it.
I don't know if this has something to do with my ADD, or if it's just something else, but man-oh-man does it bug me, haha.
I'm more of a pacer or shuffler when I'm standing up. I can't seem to keep still then. But sitting down I'm ok because I usually have my fingers busy enough at work or in class.

10-05-05, 07:41 PM
I will shake a leg when I am uncomfortable or anxious. I have a friend that will do it inceesantly. He is likely ADD as I remember him taking Ritalin when we were in grade school. (I did not)

10-05-05, 10:26 PM

YEAH! Big Time! I am always (and I do mean always) bobbing my legs up and down. I'm 42 and it's been as long as I can remember. In school when I was a kid I recall (don't forget those old metal one-piece desks) the teacher would be at the board and turn around in the middle of saying something. We'd all look at her as she stopped what she was saying and looked searchingly around the room. We were all wondering why she stopped and what she was looking for. Then she'd zero in on me and I was still wondering what she was doing.

Then the embarassment when she'd ask me (Mind you, she knew. Even though I didn't know she did...) are you the one making all that noise banging your desk?

Only then, in that instant would I realize what she and everyone else in class knew. I was pounding the bottom of my desk with my knees. I also remember that she and I were the only two not smiling.

I've actually been trying to be aware of it lately as maybe an indicator of my medication effectiveness. No change so far but I only started about 5 weeks ago. Adderall XR (5mg, 20mg, 40mg then 60mg) no real relief from the legs and hyperactivity (in my head or out) and now I'm on Concerta (Ritilan formulated for extended release I believe). I'm only on it 2 days and only at 18mg so far.

You guessed it. Still waiting for peace (and quiet).

Gotta run :)


10-05-05, 11:04 PM
Actually according to a new book I have been reading "Fidget to Focus" by Roland Rotz Phd, and Sarah D. Wright

We fidget in an effort to focus. this is the first time I have read about fidgeting in a positive light..

page 79

"Fidgets are any simultaneous sensory-motor stimulation strategy, easy to remember as the four S's. They are strategies for use in the moment. If something in which we are enguaged is not interesting enough to sustian our focus, the additional sensory motor input that is mildly syimulating, interesting, or entertaining, allows our brains to become fully enguaged, and allows us to sustain focus on the primary activity at hand. We typically employ these strtegies unconciously, because at some level we know they help us to be in the appropriate state of mind. "

page 40

"A movement strategy commonly seen in classrooms, meeting rooms, and lecture halls around the world is the fidgety leg."

I am always moving some thing but I switch extremities. If my leg is still my hand is doodling or playing with my hair. If my hands stop moving for 30 seconds my feet start moving, then the I can't sit still. I am diagnosed as hyper-active ADD.

10-06-05, 09:42 AM
meadd823, that's interesting because come to think of it whenever I'm fidgeting - especially shaking my legs - it's usually when I'm really focused on something. I always figured it was a way for me to release energy or something while focusing but I never thought that the act itself might be improving my focus.

I'll have to observe myself now to see if that's often the case (though I rarely know I'm doing it).

10-07-05, 11:35 AM
I shake my legs all the time...

I can't stop..I've tried but I get a sick feeling in my stomach or I just start to freak out in my mind so I start shaking again....

Sometimes people wonder if I need to go to the ladies room...I just tell them I have to keep moving or I'll forget to breathe!!! :)

I have to shake/move my legs to think about stuff....I dont realize that i'm doing this till my sister says "wow, your whole body is shaking right now" or when my b/f and I are watching a movie and he'll put his arm on my then i'll just move something else...can't stop....oh well... :)

03-06-09, 10:35 PM
I was just doing so and I never thought this was related to ADHD...I don't mind it, just when someone points it out does it get a bit annoying.

It's kinda relaxing in a way...

03-07-09, 04:03 PM
I think leg shaking should be added to the criteria for ADD diagnosis!

03-09-09, 11:09 PM
I do this too. My husband can tell how agitated/stressed/mad I am by how fast my foot goes. If I am shaking it in bed, his favorite remark is "Funny, I don't remember putting a quarter in the bed tonight." Har, har.

03-09-09, 11:11 PM
I'm doing it right now.

03-10-09, 03:02 AM
lol what an interesting thread. I have tend to do in myself before but mine isnt that extreme I dont really take much notice of it and neither do others really.

03-10-09, 06:52 AM
i shake my legs a lot.. in class, at the movies, while eating, in the car...

it used to drive my mom insane... especially when i'll shake the whole table along with my legs. i think my legs go into overdrive when i'm taking a test or studying. i rock in my chair, but i'll stop when i catch myself doing it cuz i dont want to look like an idiot. when i'm not sitting down i tend to pace...and when i'm standing in one place i rock from side to side (shifting my weight from one leg to another). people think i'm nervous or something..

03-10-09, 09:20 AM
I do it ALOT, so does my Dad. My mom hates it, and most people have to tell me to stop before I even notice I'm doing it.

And I'm doing it right now lol

03-10-09, 09:25 AM
I am completely convinced that -- somewhere in the world -- an earthquake has been triggered by my leg shaking.

03-10-09, 11:45 AM
Wow...I do notice that I shake my leg a lot when I'm sitting...I notice that when I'm sitting talking to someone, I'm really fidgety...I'm either playing with something with my hands or shaking my leg

03-10-09, 12:18 PM
Lol the only time my leg is still is when i have my lap top on my knee :P

03-10-09, 05:34 PM
always and if its not lag shaking is chair twisting or pen clicking or spinning an drinks mat or something like that !

03-11-09, 07:04 PM
All the time, I have to sut the laptop up on the couch next to me or I get a headache from looking at the wobbly screen...:o I curl up next to it, one foot tucked under my backside, the other flat with my knee up by my chest (this goes side-to-side as I sit like this).

I used to get smacked around the head at martial arts practice for fidgeting/squirming, but now the instructors (and senior instructors that occasionally visit) know I'm not being disrespectful, or that I'm doing it because I'm bored, I'm just being myself. I still get the odd whisper in my ear to keep still, but that tends to happen when I rock slightly back and forth subconsciously.

If I have to try and sit still, I rest one foot on top of the other to make it more difficult to tap my feet, or shake.


03-11-09, 07:25 PM
leg shaking I think is a way to relieve part of the extra mental stimulus associated with the ADD/ADHD mind.

03-18-09, 10:25 PM
I always shake my legs and then start thinking about threads like this and wonder if i my leg is bouncing up and down then i stop and when i start thinking about something else it just going again. It's like a calming feelings like if you had a blanket. I also notice when i talk to someone i stratch the back of my head or rub my ear.

03-18-09, 11:03 PM
Yeah, if I'm not shaking my leg, I'm changing positions every few seconds, so, yeah.

03-18-09, 11:17 PM
Especially if my legs are crossed, I should invest in a butter churn strap it to my foot and sell it as homemade. If both feet are on the ground I do the jump, jump rub thing with my heels, it tears them up I swear they could cut glass. I also figit with my hands and tap my first two fingers to my thumb nail, my boyfriend calls me Master Cylinder (you'll show your age if you remember Felix the Cat). For the last couple of years I've begun blinking/twitching my right eye mainly when I think. A one woman freak show, it's nice to have company though.

07-15-09, 03:34 PM
I do this constantly. Almost every waking minute of the day. My whole life I have done this. Either my legs are both shaking on the balls of my feet, up and down, or even side to side with my feet both flat with my knees knocking toward each other. Or if my leg is crossed (man style) with my ankle near my knee. i will shake my foot violently. One or both are always going. it seems even worse at age 35 than ever. I am so sick of it. My mother used to slap my leg in church because i shook the whole pew. My Girlfriends have always slapped my legs at movies or watching TV. I thought the meds I tried would help. Addy, Ritalin, Stratera, and a few others have all done nothing, for my legs OR my ADHD. Can anyone even tell me what your supposed to feel like if the meds are working? Sorry to stray from the topic.

07-15-09, 05:27 PM
yes either leg shaking, pen twirling finger/nail biting i just cant sit in a chair :L

07-15-09, 05:51 PM
Only on the dance floor

No sometimes i do not often though
When i'm comfortable with my surroundings
and also when excited by them but have to stay still
when what i really wanna do is run around annoying persons nicely:)

07-15-09, 07:27 PM
Never read through the whole topic... so forgive me if already mentioned...

But I believe the condition you refer to is RLS (Restless Leg Syndrome)

Its quite common in different mood disorders..... anxiety, depression, PSDs..... and of course the obvious...

07-16-09, 09:16 AM
Lol the only time my leg is still is when i have my lap top on my knee :P
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LOL. So this is the only known cure?

My leg doesnt shake in the manner being so widely described but I have suffered from restless legs on and off. I also have an annoying twitch in the the eyelid of my left eye.

07-16-09, 09:22 AM
Heck yeah I do and a lot of times it is like I have no control over stopping it. My friends will grab it like it is a game to try and get it to stop.:)

07-16-09, 09:53 AM
Hehe, I'm the same way!
My leg is always going off and I don't notice half the time. It irriatates other people if I'm sat close to them. They start getting annoyed when it starts up after they've repeatedly told me to stop it. What most people don't realise is that it's far more effort to stop the shaking than it is to do it!

07-16-09, 10:42 AM
OMG I love you guys and this place to death

Im always trying to fool myself that I got a bad habit but obviously it s not. 100 % of my sitting time I non-stop, crazily, stupidly shake my legs.

07-16-09, 12:46 PM
yup, me too. I shake constantly. I cant sleep without a leg going. I cant sit without a leg or both going...(their shaking as I type) I have never been able to stop it. My wife now cant sleep unless my leg is shaking in bed! I have learned to live with it. I feel weird when Im not shaking....

11-11-09, 05:59 PM
Add me to the roster of leg bouncers

I keep thinking i'm gonna have really messed up feet when I'm older! Has anyone ever had foot trouble from this? Or is it actually good for you?

I think i've been doing it since I was little, but it really kicked in hardcore when I went through a irresponsible ecstasy binge, and its basically stayed at this hardcore rate since then, like 3 years ago.

Since being diagnosed and medicated with Metylphenidate - it hasnt stopped or calmed down at all.

Have ADHD medications made any difference to your guys leg bouncing, reduction or increase?

Just to be clear - this isnt actually restless leg syndrome is it???

11-11-09, 06:05 PM
Their is a thing called restless leg syndrome

11-12-09, 09:54 AM
My leg actually gets "tired" from moving it but do I stop?? Nooooo! I have heard that this does burn calories, even a substantional amount!! So maybe there is something good to come out of doing this! Ha! It drives my husband crazy although he has gotten sorta use to it after 20 plus years!!

11-12-09, 01:41 PM
I just want to join the Shaky Leg club.

Re: Restless Leg Syndrome - that is something else entirely!!!!!

11-12-09, 04:36 PM
I have RLS,but I don't do what you folks are describing.
I used to,when I was younger,however.

RLS for me:I just 'have' to move my leg,if only a foot or so.
I can't describe the feeling,but its maybe like feeling like I'm starting to get a cramp or something.
Constant motion isn't necessary (bouncing),but certainly relieves the feeling. Otherwise just moving it a foot or two every 10 seconds works,albeit annoying.

And I learned the hard way...diphenhydramine (ie some allergy medicines,and sleeping aids) sends it into maddening overdrive.

Just my opinion.:)

11-12-09, 04:45 PM
I always do this when I have to sit still. When the waiting room at my therapist's office (he specializes in ADD) is full and running a little behind schedule, even I can barely stand to see all the leg shaking and toe tapping. But it always gives me a laugh. :D

11-12-09, 05:31 PM
My husband does this and it drives me crazy. He doesn't do it when he is on his medication. I think it is part of the hyperactivity.

I have read a little bit on Restless Leg Syndrome and it didn't sound like that. I had also thought it (RLS) was something that happened while you were sleeping and one of the reasons some people don't sleep well.

11-13-09, 06:45 PM
I do it, and it drove my co-workers crazy because the floor shaking sometimes gets in sync with their monitors, and their monitors start shaking noticeably...I've moved to the ground floor with concrete underneath, and my new co-workers seem to tolerate it now (or just too polite to complain)

11-13-09, 07:09 PM :)