We all know that regular exercise is essential for good health. It aids muscle growth, strengthens the bones, keeps the joints supple, and it regulates weight too. So, there is no getting around the fact that you need to stay active. In fact, it is even more important as you get older, because your body becomes more vulnerable.
The risk of osteoporosis, for example, increases substantially over the age of fifty. It is more common in women, but men can suffer with it too and it leads to reduced mobility, breaks, and fractures. In other words, the health of your entire skeleton starts to decline. On the bright side, it is relatively easy to prevent and control osteoporosis symptoms with regular exercise.
The best workouts focus on load bearing exercises, which force the body to work harder and grow stronger. Why not try these osteoporosis exercises for your bones?
Tai chi is perfect for anybody who wants to stay away from very vigorous activities like running or weight lifting. This makes it a great choice for older people and those with brittle bones. It is a slow, graceful activity which builds coordination and contributes to the general health of the skeleton. According to a recent study, women suffering from low bone density can actually slow the rate of loss by completing 45 minutes of tai chi per day.
Similarly, yoga has been found to increase bone mineral density if done regularly. The great thing about yoga is that it comes in a huge variety of styles. There are faster disciplines and much slower ones, as well as a range of intermediate options. As the movements are slow and precise, they stimulate bone strength by placing loads on key joints. The hips, spine, and wrists are all likely to benefit. These areas are the most prone to fracture. Click to find out more about the best shoes for yoga.
Walking is a wonderful way for older people to exercise, as it gets the muscles and bones moving without being too fast paced or frenetic. It is believed that walking for just four hours every week lowers the risk of hip fractures by 41%. Faster, brisker movements are better but feel free to progress at your own pace. Being outdoors and active is always an improvement on no exercise at all, so if you have to walk slower, that’s okay too.
More people should be lifting weights, regardless of how old they are, because it is a fantastic form of exercise. It is straightforward, accessible to anybody with a gym membership (or a weight set at home), and it stimulates bone growth. You don’t have to be intimidated by the prospect of the free weights area at your gym because all kinds of people do resistance and callisthenics training. If you’re a newbie, it is a good idea to get a friend or PT to walk you through the moves at first.
This sport is often thought of as being a kind of ‘cheat’ activity because it involves lots of standing around in picturesque environments. In actual fact, golf happens to be a superb form of exercise for the bones and it is a lot more exhausting than people realise. For one thing, dragging all of those clubs around isn’t easy. For another, taking big swings activates the bones and muscles in the arms, hips, and spine. Plus, there is all the walking between holes to think about too. So, if you’re a golf fan, stick with it and watch your bones get stronger.
Why Regular Exercise Is the Key to Healthy Bones
Unfortunately, our bodies do get more vulnerable as we age and they become prone to certain conditions and physical weaknesses. However, this does not mean that you have to accept persistent sickness or mobility problems. If you take good care of your bones – and this means exercising and using calcium supplements – you can substantially slow the rate of depreciation.