Osteoporosis Exercises

An Overview on Why Taking Exercise Helps with Osteoporosis

Click here for specific advice on Weight Bearing Exercises. Osteoporosis is defined by the National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF) as a disease that is characterized by microarchitectural deterioration of bone tissue and low bone mass that leads to greater bone fragility and a consequent increase in fracture risk. It is basically excessive loss of bone tissues that weakens the bones. Studies have shown that over 5 million women over the age of 45 had some form of fractures of the spine, hip and wrists.

Individuals who have osteoporosis have more fragile and weaker bones than those who don’t have. A broken bone can greatly affect one’s life as it causes disability and severe pain. This disease can affect all bones in the body although breaks normally occur in the wrist, hop and spine, also referred as vertebrae. Vertebrae generally support the body while aiding it to be able to sit up, stand and do other activities. Osteoporosis in the vertebrae can bring various serious problems for both men and women. Signs of osteoporosis:

  1. Height loss
  2. Curve in the back
  3. Sloping shoulders
  4. Protruding abdomen
  5. Hunched posture

Researchers had shown that this disease had contributed to more than two million bone fractures in the United States, wherein most breaks occur in the wrist, spine and hips.  Although numerous individuals consider fractures mere irritability and slight pain, the burden of such breaks are often quite heavy. Having osteoporosis can steal one’s ability to conduct simple tasks, resulting to deformity and pain and can also lead to blood clots, pneumonia, and other life-threatening complications.

Health experts suggest that individuals should conduct proper exercising in order to boost their bone strength. Such exercises include:

  • Weight bearing exercises that stimulates bone cells to produce more bone. This kind of workout can help keep the bones strong as it causes the tendons and muscles to pull on the bones. Individuals with and without osteoporosis should engage in weight-bearing exercise. This can be done by lifting external weights such as barbells or dumbbells or can also be dine with the use of one’s own bodyweight, as in doing pushups or jogging. In order to ensure that such workout is conducted properly, consult with an exercise profession before the lifting regimen starts.
  • High impact workouts. This is primarily one of the most effective ways in building new bone and preventing osteoporosis from occurring. It entails imparting a jolt to the bone and muscle like the body do during jumping, running, or doing vigorous weight lifting. For patients diagnosed with osteoporosis, it is not safe to be engaged in activities that are high impact. However, consult your physician first about it.

Muscle pulling on bone helps in building new bones, making weight bearing exercise produce stronger and denser bones. It also aids in maintaining the body’s bone density later in life. Some of the most advisable exercises against osteoporosis are load-bearing exercises. This include hiking, jogging, weight-lifting, racquet sports, dancing, step aerobics, and other actions that require the muscle to work against gravity. Cardiovascular exercises such as walking or swimming are not basically good exercises for bone building. Having at least 30 minutes of load bearing exercises daily can improve heart health, muscle strength, balance, coordination and is highly beneficial to the bones.

Exercise Tips:

  1. As you build strength, rather than doing repetitions, increase weights or resistance.
  2. Combine different weight-bearing workouts for best benefits to your bone health.
  3. Combine resistance and weight bearing exercise with aerobic exercises to improve your health.
  4. Always drink plenty of water especially in hot regions.
  5. Add a lot of physical activities to your day such as instead of using the elevator climb the stairs and walk to your office door.

Simple activities can bring great changes to your overall health especially for patients who have been diagnosed with osteoporosis. Although exercising is good for the bones and the body in general, keep in mind that it cannot prevent or cure osteoporosis alone. Consult your doctor about the various workouts that you can safely do depending on your current condition.