What is Osteoporosis?
Osteoporosis is a condition where bones become fragile and brittle, leading to a higher risk of fractures. This occurs when bones lose minerals, such as calcium, more quickly than the body can replace them leading to a loss of density within the bones. Any bone in the body can be affected by osteoporosis. However, the most common sites are the hip, spine, wrist/moving up the arm or ribs. As bones become thinner and less dense, even a minor knock or fall can cause a serious fracture. Falls can be quite a common cause of fractures for individuals with osteoporosis.
Why is it important to exercise if you have Osteoporosis?
Exercise can help bones modify their shape and size, so they become stronger to prevent injuries from occurring. Exercise can also increase muscular strength to help improve balance resulting in reduced risk of falls. Physical activity plays a major role in the prevention of osteoporosis.
What is the best exercise to do if you have Osteoporosis?
To maintain bone mineral density, weight-bearing exercises that have an impact on bones are highly recommended. This includes activities such as running, jumping and skipping. More so, moderate intensity exercise that does not exacerbate pain, and aerobic weight-bearing activities should also be performed to increase bone mineral density. Supervised resistance training (weight lifting) conducted by an Accredited Exercise Physiologist and/or Physiotherapist at MD Health should also be included as tolerated. It is ideal to participate in such activity as the prime focus for increasing muscular strength is to improve balance, resulting in the reduction of high-risk falls.
What should I do before commencing a new exercise program with osteoporosis?
Prior to participating in resistance training, it is important to see your GP to receive clearance and be aware of the main areas (bones) affected by osteoporosis. This will help your practitioner at MD Health tailor your program in a safe and effective manner to meet your specific needs.
Source: Exercise Right Campaign (2019), Osteoporosis & Exercise, Powered by ESSA
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