Osteoporosis is a disease that affects millions of people around the world. It is a condition that causes bones to become extremely weak and vulnerable to fractures. Although it is difficult to diagnose in early stages, some of the most common late symptoms of the disease include:
– back pain
– bent posture
– decrease in height
– bones that break easily, even without too much stress on them.
So far, exercising was more of a taboo subject for those suffering from this disease. Due to the nature of the illness, the majority of people affected by it did not even consider working out as being an option.
However, the British Journal of Sports Medicine has recently published a Consensus statement on physical activity and exercise for osteoporosis which actually encourages exercising for people who are dealing with the illness. The statement, issued by an interdisciplinary board of experts and supported by the Royal Osteoporosis Society, emphasizes the importance of constantly working out. In time, a constant workout schedule will strengthen the muscles and improve posture, thus decreasing the risk of fractures.
The released statement recommends that “people with osteoporosis should undertake (1) resistance and impact exercise to maximize bone strength; (2) activities to improve strength and balance to reduce falls; (3) spinal extension exercise to improve posture and potentially reduce risk of falls and vertebral fractures”.
But how often should people with osteoporosis exercise and what workouts are recommended?
As far as frequency is concerned, the conclusion of the panel was that more is better. Therefore, people with osteoporosis should have a daily workout schedule that includes jogging or aerobics. At the same time, they should do targeted muscle training about two or three times a week.
However, people who haven’t worked out before are recommended to ask for the support of a professional trainer, who can teach them the correct posture and intensity for each type of exercise.