Those of you who read my column regularly know that in May, Osteoporosis month, I always write about Osteoporosis.
With 12,000 boomers a day turning 65, that’s one every 8 seconds for the next 18 years; and with 50% of women over the age of 50 projected to have an osteoporosis related fracture in their lifetime, I thought I’d be a little practical this year and give you a mini workout to help you protect your bones. Our bones are living tissue and grow stronger with weight bearing and resistance exercise. This is called Bone Loading.
And since the three areas most at risk for Osteoporotic fracture are the Spine, the Hip and the Wrist, here are 3 easy Bone Loading exercises, one for each of those areas, you can do using a pair of hand weights or a couple of soup cans. Use a weight that makes the exercise feel somewhat hard after 8 reps. Remember to always exhale on the exertion. Do 8-15 reps of each of these exercises. Start where you’re comfortable and build up.
And of course always consult your doctor before beginning this or any exercise program.
Double arm row: Loads Spine
Start with arms in front of you, weights together.
Slowly row arms back, bending elbows bringing weights to chest height.
Squeeze shoulder blades together, without shrugging your shoulders.
Lunge – Loads Hip and Femur (thigh bone)
Stand tall, feet about shoulder width apart, hands and weights at your sides.
Keep body erect and lunge forward with left foot, bending both knees to help facilitate the move. (Right heel comes off the floor). Your front knee should be aligned over the second toe of that foot and your weight should be centered between your front and back foot.
Hold for 8 seconds, (remember to breathe) return to starting position and repeat lunging with right foot.
Hold arms in front of you palms up.
Using only your wrists, curl weights toward your body until knuckles are facing the ceiling.
Slowly lower and repeat.
The National Osteoporosis Foundation has a wealth of information on your bones and Osteoporosis on its website www.NOF.org
And for more information on bone loading exercise visit www.movingfree.com