What Is Osteoporosis?

All of a person’s bone mass is built before the age of 30. As people get older, muscle breaks down, especially if people don’t follow good health habits. When bones get brittle and weaken, the diagnosis is osteoporosis. Up to 20% of women aged 50 or older are at risk of developing osteoporosis. If the condition has already been diagnosed, try these 3 exercise options.

my texas health care obgyn Exercising With Osteoporosis 3 Activities To Try What To Avoid

1. Strength training

This form of exercise might involve using free weights, weight machines, resistance bands, or a person’s own body weight. Resistance training helps to maintain bone density, which is essential for women with osteoporosis. Women who have never done strength training should start slow and aim for 2-3 workouts per week. For best results, work with a personal trainer or physical therapist who can tailor workouts to the appropriate level and tolerance.

2. Walking

Any weight-bearing exercise will help increase bone health and strength. Walking is one of the most tried-and-true, accessible, and safe options for women with weak bones. Additionally, women can try elliptical machines, stair masters, dancing, gardening, or low-impact aerobics. Some activities, such as swimming, have excellent cardiovascular benefits but won’t help bone health.

3. Stability exercises

For people with osteoporosis, fall prevention is essential. Because of the weakening of bones, just one fall can result in a severe fracture. Target stability and balance with specific exercises. Tai chi and yoga can improve balance. Additionally, simple movements like standing on one leg can provide benefits. For more specific guidance, work with a physical therapist to improve strength and balance.

Why should I exercise?

Women can start exercising at any age; the time is never too late. Physical activity can improve muscle strength and tone, increase balance, and improve posture. Regular activity can also decrease joint pain and lower a woman’s risk of bone fracture. Many fitness routines will offer benefits. The best type of exercise is one that is easy to stick with. Consistency is key.

What should I avoid?

High-impact activities can increase the risk of fractures for women with osteoporosis. Avoid running, jumping, or jogging. This will rule out some circuit workouts and high-impact bodyweight movements. In general, choose exercises that are low-impact and use slow, controlled movements. Additionally, bending and twisting motions can increase the risk of compression fractures in the spine. Avoid sit-ups, toe touches, or other twisting actions like golf swings. For more information about living a healthy life with osteoporosis, speak with a healthcare provider.

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