How To Keep My Bones Strong?

 

Firstly, let’s look in to the general bone density of cyclists…

Sports such as swimming and cycling are non weight bearing, non impact activities. Why does this matter? Well importantly, weight bearing and impact are known to help keep bones strong.
Therefore, athletes in non weight bearing sports present with lower bone density than those doing sports with impact forces.  This shows that when intending to use sport to increase bone density, impact forces should be considered.

 

 

Reduced bone density has been found in competitive male cyclists. This will then lead to a higher risk of fractures. Therefore, if participating in similar activities, it is important to complement your regime with other exercises. A higher bone density has been seen in those participating in weight lifting, impact and plyometrics.  Furthermore, cardiovascular exercises should be included to maintain general health.

An cyclist athlete with low bone density

Does walking increase bone density?

For those who despise cycling or more intense exercises there is good news! Walking is a beneficial exercise for increasing bone density. Even for postmenopausal women, walking is known to increase the density of the thigh bone. However, due to the smaller forces involved, the benefits are diluted the further up the body you go. Walking has been found to have a smaller effect on spinal bone density. This is true for both perimenopausal and postmenopausal women. The beneficial effects of walking increase when performed for a longer period of time (at least 6 months).  Furthermore, introducing similar exercises in to a regime provides further benefit.  A 2% increase in lumbar spine bone density and a 6.8% increase in thigh bone density has been found when introducing a combination of treadmill walking (for 30 minutes per day) and step climbing (for 10 minutes per day).

Does running increase bone density?

Now for one of the main players in bone density… running. Due to the increased forces involved, running has been found to improve entire body bone mineral density; even in those aged over 65!

 

Studies comparing strength training, high impact and no exercise over a six-month period have found that there was a significant increase in bone density in the lumbar spine (lower back) and thigh bone in the high impact group compared to the other groups. This shows that even if you are currently undergoing a strength training program, incorporating impact forces can provide further benefit.

runner increasing density of her bones via running

A thank you note…

Pinnacle Posture thanks you for reading this blog post. We hoped you enjoyed it. Importantly, please share it via social media and direct it to those that it may help. After all, a reduction in pain, a chance to continue in a sport or even an eased concern can change someone’s world.

To return to the ‘ultimate guide to keeping your bones strong’ page, please use the link below.

Ultimate guide to keeping your bones strong.