6 Bone Building Exercises to Prevent Osteoporosis and Maintain Independence

   

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What does osteoporosis look like to you?

 

Do you picture someone frail and elderly?

 

The progression of osteoporosis and the time to

start addressing the problem may be much

earlier than you think.  In fact, the thinning

process of the bone that causes osteoporosis can

start as early as the mid 30's.

 

Peak bone density generally peaks at about 35

years old.  It then begins to steadily decline

unless you intentionally do something to stop it.

 

Osteoporosis is a disease characterized by thin

porous bones. It results in decreased bone

strength and a change in bone structure.  The

result, a lessening ability of the bone to

withstand the forces of everyday life and

increasing risk of fractures.

 

Osteoporosis is a disease that can be "silent".

 

There may be no outward symptoms of the

disease until a fracture occurs.  However, we

do not want to wait to have a broken bone to

start  addressing bone health.

 

In fact, no matter your age, now is the

time to start preventing bone loss!

 

There are some factors such as age and

genetics that we can not control in regards to

bone health.  However, healthy bone is also

built and maintained through a healthy

lifestyle.  This includes avoiding habits that

promote bone loss such as smoking and

excessive alcohol consumption.

 

Our lifestyle must include a diet adequate in

calcium, magnesium, and vitamin D. In many

individuals, supplementation is required to

reach adequate levels of these necessary

vitamins and minerals.

 

In addition, appropriate exercise is a

necessary component to bone building or

slowing bone loss.  At any age, bone grows

when it is adequately and properly stressed.

This requires a mechanical load on the bone

that causes it to remodel.

 

What does this mean to you?

You need to be up on your feet and lifting

heavy things.

 

If you have been told you have, or are at high

risk for osteoporosis, going to physical therapy

is a proactive way to promote bone health.

 

A physical therapist can give you a custom

designed exercise program that will help

prevent falls and fractures.  It is important

that those who already have thin bone have

an individualized bone building prescription

to ensure that they are neither over- or

under- exercising.

 

After looking at multiple studies, it was

reported that aerobic, weight bearing, and

resistance exercises all appear to be effective

in improving bone density of the spine.

Similar studies have looked at the effect of

exercise on wrist, ankle, and hip bone strength.

 

A comprehensive program strengthens each of

these bones and surrounding muscles.  It will

also address balance, coordination, and

flexibility.

 

If you are still in the prevention phase of

osteoporosis, it is likely safe to begin an

exercise regimen on your own.

 

Here are 6 Bone Building Exercises.

Incorporate each of these so you get the most

bone building benefits from your time

investment.

 

1. Wall Push Ups

 

Stand about 2 feet away facing a wall, placing

hands shoulder distance apart, lower your

chest toward the wall and then push away.

 

 2. Wall Squats

 

Stand with your back and shoulder flat against

a wall.  Move your feet about 2 feet away from

the wall and slide your body down the wall into

a squat position.

 

 3. Three Way Foot Taps

 

Stand on one foot, with support on a chair if

needed.  Tap your other foot forward, to the

side laterally, and then behind you.

 

 4. Back Extension

 

Lay on your stomach with a pillow under your

waist.  Hold your hands out in front of you and

lift up into a "superman" position.

 

5. Hands and Knees Reaching

 

Get on the floor on your hands and knees.

Reach one arm out in front of you and

straighten out the opposite leg behind you.

Hold and then repeat with the other arm and

leg.

 

6. Bridge

 

On your back with knees bent, slowly pull in

your stomach muscles and lift your hips off the

floor.  Hold and then slowly return to the floor.

 

If you need further assistance with these

exercises, progressing to more resistance, or

have pain with any of these movements, contact

us today to get you moving in the right direction.

 

Call the office at 901-316-5456 or e-mail me:

amanda@peakpotentialpt.com

 

Don't delay or wait until you "have a problem".

Your mobility and independence depend on it!