Osteoporosis and osteopenia are defined by weak and brittle bones. The real danger of these conditions is the increase risk of fracture from trips and falls. That’s the bad news. The good news is that they are both 100% treatable. Your bones are living organisms that adapt to the stresses put on them. This means that just like your muscles, you can build stronger and healthier bones. In this article we’ll look at the best exercises for osteoporosis to help you build strong and healthy bones.
The Best Exercises For Osteoporosis
When I look at other articles on the best exercises for osteoporosis I see a lot of gentle stretches and passive movements. While you do want the exercises to be safe, building stronger bones requires exercises that build strength. Gentle stretches and bodyweight movments aren’t going to cut it. The following exercises for osteoporosis provide the resistance required to build stronger, healthier bones.
In general, the best exercises for osteoporosis are weight bearing (standing) exercises. I included the glute bridge because it is a very SAFE exercise and a good starting point for anyone nervous about strength training. It targets your glutes and hamstring as well as strengthens your hip and leg bones.
The Quadruped Hold
The quadruped hold is a functional core exercise that targets the entire body. The quadruped position targets yoru core musculature while stressing your upper and lower body for stronger and healthier bones. The truth is, any plank progression is a good exercise for osteoporosis.
Toe Taps are a safe exercise for osteoporosis and a great place to begin your weight bearing exercises. Not shown in this video are weighted variations that allow you to add resistance to further strengthen your bones (See Full Video For Weight Variations).
Step Ups are another great single leg strengthening exercises for osteoporosis. This simple and straight forward movement is safe and easy to add resistance for more benefits. Hold a dumbell in each hand for even more osteoporosis and osteopenia benefits.
Banded Hip Hinge
This is one of my favorite exercises for osteoporosis. As the name suggests, the hip hinge targets your hips and legs to lower risk of fracture in these areas. The downward pull of the band provides a ‘compressive’ force that is great for spinal osteoporosis.
The squat is a full body movemtn that targets the bones of your lower body. There are many variations to match any ability level which you can find below.
A full body strengthening exercise that is a great treatment for osteoporosis. This movement targets your lower body and spine. Remember to learn and practice proper technique before adding too much weight.
One of my favorite full body, functional core exercises. It’s as simple as lifting up heavy weights and carryng them around the room. The compressive force of the weights makes this a great choice for osteoporosis of the spine.
To recap, your bones are living organisms that are constantly changing based on the stresses put on them. Choosing gentle stretches or passive movements won’t help you build strong bones. Strength exercises force your bones to rebuild into stronger, healther versions of themselves. This is why getting stronger is the BEST treatment for osteoporosis.