Chronic Exertional Compartment Syndrome.

That's the real name for arm pump a sometimes debilitating condition that causes blood to pool in the forearms, causing swelling and loss of strength in the arms.

Many dirt bike riders succumb to its forces especially on the Motocross track and most, if not all, who ride a dirt bike, especially beginners, will feel arm pump in one degree or another. When arm pump hits, it quickly turns debilitating eventually hindering you from gripping the handlebars. Chronic arm pump results in inflammation and hardening from the friction created with the fascia which surrounds the forearm muscles. This can lead to painful scar tissue sometimes requiring surgery for relief.

So, how do you stop arm pump? What's the cure? Talk to enough riders, expect a number of different answers but with each probably having some similarities with the other. Stretching exercises. Massage. Nutrition. Ride more. Ride less.

So, we talked with northwest fast guy Tommy Weeck who knows a little about arm pump because he addresses it in his riding classes. The former pro who competed overseas in the MX2 class of Motocross World Championship (MXGP), for Team Puerto Rico in the Motocross of Nations (2011) and in the United States in Supercross and Motocross, runs RiseMX, a Motocross training school that focuses on strength conditioning and nutrition.

Weeck, a holistic life coach, actually didn't have much to say about arm pump because you can easily prevent it from occurring. Therefore, he offered just a few tips that he believes works every time.

How to Prevent Arm Pump

1. Use Your Lower Body

Weeck said any time a student in his class complains about arm pump he looks at the boots and frame of the dirt bike. He said 99.9 percent of the time the frame is dirty therefore he knows the rider is not squeezing with their legs otherwise the frame would be wiped clean.

"Any time your arms are being over worked something is not working correctly," Weeck said. "All of your weight is low on the bike. Now, put these handlebars at top of bike and people steer from the top."

Therefore, riders need to squeeze the bike at the lower point with their legs and feet while keeping their upper body relaxed. Think of how much bigger the leg muscles are which help grasp the bike and reduce the grip stress on the arms. Weeck said using your lower body is the #1 thing you can do to prevent arm pump.

2. Proper Posture

So how do you properly use your lower body? Well, Weeck covers this in class and explains it in terms of the "athletic stance." On your toes, knees slightly bent, hips out so the chest comes forward and you look ready to drive forward. Weeck likens the posture a lineman in football has just prior to the ball snap as the same stance a rider should have on the bike to help prevent arm pump.

3. Check Breathing Pattern

Lastly, if you're tight on the bike, you're not breathing correctly which results in a death grip on the handlebars thus leading to arm pump. Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. Weeck said he has seen stats where riders take two breaths in a lap of Supercross. Learning proper (relaxed) breathing technique goes a long way towards preventing arm pump.

If you apply your body correctly, use legs as power and breathe correctly you should not get arm pump.

How to Stop Arm Pump

Despite our best efforts, sometimes we fall into our old patterns and with just five laps to go you suddenly realize arm pump has set in. Once it starts, it's very hard to stop, Weeck said. Your arms get tighter, you grab harder because you stopped breathing and lactic acid builds up. Once you fall into the pattern you're at the mercy of arm pump until you stop.

Therefore, if you feel arm pump coming on the best thing to do is stop riding obviously not an ideal choice when in the middle of a race. So, squeeze your legs to reduce the pressure on your arms and check your breathing. Hopefully, you can power through and finish.

How to Relieve Arm Pump

Now your arms throb, but you want to keep riding and you certainly don't want to make matters worse. Weeck said massage and stretching exercises help and you should stretch anyway before riding which helps prevent injury.

Weeck said practicing a healthy lifestyle daily which includes eating right, getting enough sleep and training correctly all help towards preventing arm pump and if it should arise, quickly relieving the symptoms to get you back on two wheels.