cramp up

cramp up

1. To begin to experience muscle cramps. Whoa, I need to rest for a minute—my leg is cramping up.
2. To cause one to begin to experience muscle cramps. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "cramp" and up." I need to get some water—dehydration is starting to cramp me up.
3. To squeeze or force someone or something into an overly small space. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "cramp" and up." Every time you try to cramp up more stuff in this closet, it all comes crashing down on me the next time I open it. Don't leave the dog cramped up in his cage all day!
See also: cramp, up

cramp up

v.
1. To suffer muscle cramps: I cramped up while swimming today.
2. To cause someone or something to suffer muscle cramps: That lousy meal cramped me up.
3. To squeeze something tightly into a restrictive space or position: There are too many subjects cramped up together under the same heading. I was cramped up in the back seat of a compact car for hours.
See also: cramp, up
References in periodicals archive ?
The after-effects of exercise which places excessive strain on your leg muscles and cause them to cramp up after you stop exercising.
Don't Cramp Up Everyone tells you to eat bananas if you want to prevent cramping.
I started to cramp up from 80 onwards so I didn't want to prolong it too long,'' he admitted after his 11th Test century.
If you exercised strenously earlier in the day, your muscles may tighten up while you sleep and thus cramp up.
It could be: 6 The after-effects of exercise which place excessive strain on your leg muscles and cause them to cramp up after you stop exercising.