Exercises to protect, strengthen your bones

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According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, it is estimated that about 50 percent of women and 25 percent of men over 50, will break a bone due to osteoporosis.

Osteoporosis is a bone disease, in which an individual may lose too much bone, make too little bone or both. The disease is more prevalent in women. Females’ bone mass peaks between the ages of 20 and 30, and begins to decline between the ages of 40 and 50.

It is important for individuals, especially women, to begin building their bone bank (bone density) as early as possible to prevent osteoporosis.

The fuller your bone bank, the more time it will take for bone to break down, leading to a lessened risk of osteoporosis.

One of the key methods of preventing osteoporosis is starting a regular exercise program that incorporates weight bearing and non-weight bearing exercises.

Weight-bearing exercises, such as walking and jogging, promote bone growth by applying direct compression on the bone.

Exercises such as Pilates and yoga are low-impact, while also incorporating weight-bearing movements that may be helpful for individuals who have difficulty jogging or walking.

Non weight-bearing exercises, such as lifting weights or using resistance bands, helps to strengthen the muscles that support and protect the bone and prevent secondary injuries.

Improving balance and posture are also important methods of increasing bone health and lessening the risk factors of fracture or breaks.

You should work to reverse the forward bent postures we find ourselves in so often throughout our daily lives.

Balance is very important to work on to avoid falling, and in turn, avoid fractures. It is extremely important to consult with a physical therapist or healthcare professional before beginning any exercise routine.

The exceptional team of healthcare providers within the Cone Health Network can instruct patients on safe routines to improve bone health.

Spokesperson Background:
Julia Sanchez, DPT, is a physical therapist at Cone Health Outpatient Rehabilitation Center at MedCenter High Point.

Sanchez received a Bachelor of Science in sports medicine from the University of Virginia in 2009 and earned a Doctor of Physical Therapy from the University of Miami in 2011.

She also became a certified Pilates instructor in 2011.