The percentage of Americans with osteoporosis who are women is a whopping 80 percent – totaling more than 35 million people. What’s the message for women? Mind your bones!
While bone density – the amount of tissue contained in bone – diminishes as we age, exercise is one way to help offset the effects.
Exercise tips for women in their 30s
Our 30s are a key time, when bone begins to break down faster than we can build it, so high-impact, weight-bearing activity becomes critical to preventing extreme bone loss.
High-impact exercises include running/jogging, high-impact aerobics, repetitive stair climbing, dancing, racquetball and other sports.
Exercise tips for women in their 50s, 60s and beyond
In our 50s, 60s and beyond, or if our bone density is low, we should do high-impact exercise only with a doctor’s permission or under the direction of a physical therapist due to risks of joint pain and fracture.
Low-impact exercises still benefit bone health, positively impact quality of life, increase comfort, help maintain balance and agility and decrease the risk of falls leading to fractures.
Cycling and swimming, while excellent forms of cardiovascular exercise, do not improve bone health as much as these low-impact exercises: walking, elliptical trainer, low-impact aerobics and stair-stepping machine.