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Bouncing your leg up and down

aimeepoo

Junior Member
Thread starter #1
I'm sure I'm not the only one who does this. It is something I've done for a long time and it gets more intense the older I get. I will sit here at my desk and just bounce my leg up and down really fast. It really shakes everything around me and I do not do it intentionally. I think this is a self soothing thing as it seems to somewhat calm me. Anyone else do this? If so have you been able to stop doing it or does it even bother you? It isn't like restless leg syndrome or anything like that. I can stop doing it but it feel antsy if I do stop.
 

deanyd_17

Junior Member
#2
It could be a self-soothing thing. I do it, myself. But it's more likely just a developed habit. If not doing it makes you tense or anxious, then I can understand getting concerned about it, but if it's simply something that you're doing subconsciously then I wouldn't be too worried about it.


If it's a coping mechanism for stress, it's a relatively harmless one.
 
#3
Yes, I have done this since being a young child. I cannot keep my legs still, ever. Even when I am trying to fall asleep, I have one foot bouncing like crazy... Drives my fiance crazy.
 

aimeepoo

Junior Member
Thread starter #4
Yes' date=' I have done this since being a young child. I cannot keep my legs still, ever. Even when I am trying to fall asleep, I have one foot bouncing like crazy... Drives my fiance crazy. [/quote']
Haha..I actually do the same exact thing when falling asleep. I will bounce my leg and it bounces the whole mattress. My husband has always enjoyed it because it kind of rocks him to sleep. In fact, when I stop doing it he will take over. :)
 
#5
I definitely have this habit. During highly stressful situations, I bounce my legs rather obnoxiously, move my hands around, wiggle etc. Used to drive the people who sat near me in high school nuts. Unfortunately, it seems like something I can't really stop. I tend to do it even when I'm calm. Personally, I think it's my body's way of ridding itself of excess nervous/emotional energy.
 

Sue

Junior Member
#6
Yes' date=' I have done this since being a young child. I cannot keep my legs still, ever. Even when I am trying to fall asleep, I have one foot bouncing like crazy... Drives my fiance crazy. [/quote']
I don't have this problem but my fiance does. When he is falling asleep at night he has one foot bouncing the whole time. It drives me crazy. He says that he tries to control it but it never stops. I don't even think that he realizes that he is going it but it makes it hard for me to fall asleep. If I am asleep before him then it doesn't wake me up though so I try to be asleep before him but some times that just doesn't happen. I know he doesn't do it on purpose but it does bother me.
 

kgord

Junior Member
#7
Yes, some people do this alot. I think it is definitely a way to burn off nervous energy. I have known many people who do this excessively. I will ocassionally enjoy some leg bouncing! I think it sometimes annoys people when you do it, but I generally do it in a private place. Hey, the upside of this habit is that it burns calories,,,,so it is something you can depend on to do that!! I don't really see it is as a problem unless your spouse or signifanct other thiks it is.
 
#8
It depends on how am I feeling, it has to do a lot with stress, but yes, I found myself doing this quite a lot, but not all the time, and I don't feel like it's a regular habit.


But on high school, I had a friend who did this all the time during the three years that I spend with him. I remember that during that time I read that it was a form to relieve stress, what it really made sense because he was always the smartest kid in the class, and he's studying medicine now, so the stress has always been there.
 
#9
I definitely do this also. It drives my wife insane, to the point where we can't sit on the same couch if I am bouncing my legs up and down. I seem to only do it when I am really stressed or really bored. I never thought about it being another symptom of any issue, its just something I have done my entire life. I would be interested in hearing from others though if this is possibly something they have noticed in their parents. I know my mom does the same thing and always just thought it was one of those learned things growing up.
 
#10
OutOfSpoons said:
I definitely have this habit. During highly stressful situations, I bounce my legs rather obnoxiously, move my hands around, wiggle etc. Used to drive the people who sat near me in high school nuts. Unfortunately, it seems like something I can't really stop. I tend to do it even when I'm calm. Personally, I think it's my body's way of ridding itself of excess nervous/emotional energy.
I can relate to this. It drives everyone around me crazy! When my fiance and I are watching a movie, I am constantly moving, I can NEVER sit still. I have tried to stop, but gosh... It's what I have done for the past how many years?
 

orchid

Junior Member
#11
Oh I've done this for as long as I can remember. I remember doing it even when I was a kid. The movement just seems to help me cope. If I find a certain place on the ball of my foot, I can make my leg bounce automatically... it's like a weird nerve thing (unrelated to anxiety, just a cool trick.)


I always try to hide bouncing my legs and I don't think others have really noticed (or at least they haven't said anything about it yet.)
 

aimeepoo

Junior Member
Thread starter #12
I'm glad to see that so many do this as well. I believe it is a way to cope with anxiousness or stress. It kind of helps put your mind at ease in some odd way. Which, I remember I had a counselor once that told me that if I am in the middle of an anxiety attack, that I should start exercising or running in place. That can actually help she says. But, I can't focus on anything but the anxiety attack so not sure I can do that. Hopefully I don't have one to put that to the test..ugh.
 
#13
I definitely do this when I'm anxious, and there's a few other things I notice I do too, when I feel anxiety coming on.


I pick at my fingernails - not bite them, but just pick at them kind of thing.


I twirl any jewelry I have on (like my wedding ring) or play with necklaces.


I play with my hair.


I wonder if anyone else has any of those traits too...
 
#14
This is something that I've never thought about until now. I find myself doing this a lot when I'm waiting in lines. It drives my boyfriend absolutely insane, but it seems to be the only thing to help me cope when waiting for long periods of time. I also find myself doing this in class as well. If I am not bouncing my leg, I am usually tapping my fingernails on any sort of nearby surface. It helps me cope with my anxiety. Keeping a constant rhythm gives me something to focus on, other than the people around me. I never thought about my tapping habits, but it really puts it into perspective.
 

Joel7050

Junior Member
#15
Yes, it's not really a symptom, I used to do it too. It's a bad habit, more likely. I've gotten myself to quit by telling myself, if I catch myself shaking I'll have to put aside $1 to charity, and it actually worked, the first few days I donated over $10 and was starting to feel the pinch, and ended up able to quit after donating hundreds. Definitely worth it though. You may want to try this method or something similar.
 

Abi

New Member
#16
I definitely do this when I'm anxious, and there's a few other things I notice I do too, when I feel anxiety coming on.


I pick at my fingernails - not bite them, but just pick at them kind of thing.


I twirl any jewelry I have on (like my wedding ring) or play with necklaces.


I play with my hair.


I wonder if anyone else has any of those traits too...
I do all these things to!! I do it all the time at school or at home, mainly i do the leg bouncing thing and if i don't i feel really sick and my stomach hurts. I think that there coping mechanisms are quite normal as i know some other people who do some of these too. I used to ping elastic bands on my wrist but i scarred my wrist and so a friend helped me stop. The other things don't help as much as that did but i won't go back to doing that.
 
#17
I'm sure I'm not the only one who does this. It is something I've done for a long time and it gets more intense the older I get. I will sit here at my desk and just bounce my leg up and down really fast. It really shakes everything around me and I do not do it intentionally. I think this is a self soothing thing as it seems to somewhat calm me. Anyone else do this? If so have you been able to stop doing it or does it even bother you? It isn't like restless leg syndrome or anything like that. I can stop doing it but it feel antsy if I do stop.
I never do it but when I was given Sertraline meds it made me shake my legs non stop. It really got on my nerves and worried me so I stopped taking them. I take prozac now and I don't have shaky legs any more.
 
#18
I definitely do this when I'm anxious, and there's a few other things I notice I do too, when I feel anxiety coming o

I pick at my fingernails - not bite them, but just pick at them kind of thing.


I twirl any jewelry I have on (like my wedding ring) or play with necklaces.


I play with my hair.


I wonder if anyone else has any of those traits too...
Yes, I do these things, mostly when I'm NOT in public so as not to appear childish or unprofessional. But still I catch myself picking cuticles/nails (best way to stop is keep manicured!). But as for leg twitching, I am compelled to do it if I am feeling a lack of good exercise. So it is like Nature's way of relieving the stress that jogging or dancing or yoga would give. As for playing with my hair, this is just a really enjoyable stimulus. I will take one piece, smooth it out, wrap around my finger and "pet" it because it is so soft and silky, like petting the cat; it just feels so nice! Sometimes I have to invite a family member to "Just feel that! Isnt it silky?!" And they will feel it and have to agree it feels pleasant to touch! I will do it when talking to someone at home, or when watching a show or thinking about a problem. Another habit I have (all these are since childhood) is clenching one side of my jaw while releasing the other causing a satisfying little click in my temperomandibilar joint. I can't remember not doing this daily. I didn't even know what it was I was doing until I was in dental school. During the time I had braces and a while after, I couldn't do this anymore and I missed it! Later, when my bite settled in I could (and do). I try not to do that and wish I'd never started as clenching results in shortened facial dimension and wide, square jaws. I'm middle aged now. None of these things have ever been a worry for me except the jaw clenching. The leg twitching got me through (even now) lectures and dry presentations. But the movement is so small and rapid I don't think anyone in a lecture notices as they are doing their own things to try to stay focused! (One of my classmates used to stab himself in the leg with his mechanical pencil just enough to be uncomfortable to keep him from drifting off mentally!) I know that all of habits things help me block out things I don't want to think about and give me something to focus on. I only landed on this site because I wondered how common the leg movement is. It is not RLS, because I don't have pain from being still, it is voluntary, I enjoy it, and I would miss it if I didn'tdo it. I just feel restless/anxious/antsy if I don't do it. I don't think of myself as more anxious than other people and I don't think I have anxiety disorder, though I absolutely dread doing everything! Once I force myself to do the dreaded thing and am in the middle of it (party, work, housework, meetings, presentations, paying bills, shopping, socializing, waking up lol) I am fine and often don't want it to end! But there is a lot of dread before almost everything until the point I have no choice but to do it or suffer bad consequences! Does any of this sound familiar?
 
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