Group of seniors excercising

Exercises For Osteoporosis

Your risk of certain health problems increases as you get older. One of the conditions you’re more likely to get as you age is osteoporosis, which is a decrease in bone density. When this occurs, your bones are more likely to break, and you’ll notice they don’t heal as quickly as they did when you were younger. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce your odds of developing osteoporosis as you get older, with one of the best methods being exercise. So if you want to keep your bones strong for as long as possible, take a look at some of the best exercises for osteoporosis.

Weight-Bearing Aerobic Exercises

One of the best types of exercises for osteoporosis is any weight-bearing workout. This refers to any kind of aerobic activity that requires you to be on your feet and support your weight with your bones. Some common weight-bearing aerobic exercises for osteoporosis include:

  • Walking
  • Jogging
  • Hiking
  • Aerobics
  • Dancing
  • Elliptical machine
  • Stair climbing
  • Jumping rope
  • Playing tennis

The reason these weight-bearing workouts are good at reducing your risk of osteoporosis is that they force your bones to get stronger the more you put your weight on them. So you might not notice much of a difference when you first start adding these exercises for osteoporosis to your normal routine, but you will gradually increase your bone strength as you perform these workouts. Plus, with aerobic exercises, you’ll improve the health of your circulatory system and your heart—two benefits that most seniors could use.

Strength Training

Not all the best exercises for osteoporosis are aerobic. Some are anaerobic and focus more on strength. More specifically, strength training—in which you use either your own body weight or free weights to strengthen your muscles—can reduce your risk of osteoporosis. Not only does it increase bone density over time, but it also increases your coordination and balance due to stronger muscles, which means you have a lower chance of falling and breaking a bone.

Some of the best strength training exercises for osteoporosis include the following options:

  • Lifting free weights
  • Lifting your body weight (such as push-ups, squats, etc.)
  • Using weight machines at the gym
  • Using resistance bands

Strength training is a common activity at the gym since it’s usually stocked with weights and weight machines. But you don’t have to go to the gym to get this workout done. Just buy some small weights, a resistance band, and an exercise mat and you can perform these exercises for osteoporosis without leaving your house. Try to do strength-based exercises for osteoporosis about twice per week.

Workouts for Better Balance

Part of keeping the effects of osteoporosis at bay is avoiding falls since you can easily break a bone from a minor fall when your bones are weak. But it can be hard to avoid falls when your balance is not at its best, which tends to happen as we age. The good news is that you have some control over this, as you can perform balance exercises at home so you feel more stable on your feet.

Some of the best balance-based exercises for osteoporosis include:

  • Standing on one foot
  • Yoga
  • Pilates
  • Tai Chi

Flexibility Workouts

Finally, some of the most important exercises for osteoporosis are focused on improving your flexibility. As you’ve likely noticed, staying flexible can be difficult as you age, unless you’re committed to stretching every day. And the problem with not being as flexible as you used to be is that your muscles and joints are not at their best, which means you could be more likely to fall and break a bone. This can take months to heal if your bone density isn’t what it once was.

You can start restoring your flexibility to its former glory by getting into the habit of stretching every day. Note that stretching is best after a workout when your muscles are already warmed up, as this can help prevent injury. Try to hold each stretch for up to 30 seconds, though even holding it for 10 seconds will benefit your body. In addition, be sure to avoid any stretches that involve bending or twisting at the waist, especially if there’s a chance you have osteoporosis. You don’t want to risk fracturing any part of your spine as you work on improving your flexibility.

To improve your flexibility in order to can protect yourself from osteoporosis, these are the right exercises to try:

  • Gentle stretching
  • Pilates
  • Yoga

As you can see, yoga is one type of workout that can help you improve both your balance and your flexibility on your way to avoiding osteoporosis. You can get started with these 10 Easy Yoga Poses for Seniors, making sure to avoid any poses that require you to bend or twist at the waist of course. In fact, you should talk to your doctor before you try any of these exercises for osteoporosis. Contact us today to find out what your options are!

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