By the time we are 50, most of us will have experienced loss of bone mass due to the slowing down of the body’s bone rebuilding process which usually beings in our 30s. While it may not be realistic to regain the bone strength of youth, there are several things you can do to slow down bone loss and maintain bone health well into your 80s and beyond.
Here are 7 exercises that will help strengthen your bones:
- Outward hip rotation: Lift your knee up in front of you till it is about the same height as your hip and hold for 3-4 seconds. Next, slowly rotate your hip outwards and hold for 3-4 seconds. Repeat a few times as comfort allows and then switch legs.
- Incline push-ups: This is an easier variation of regular floor push-ups. Start with your hands resting on a chair or bench. Keeping your body in a straight line bend your arms to bring your chest as close to your hands as possible. Then straighten your arms out again. Do as many repetitions as you can.
- The drinking bird: Raise one leg slightly off the floor while holding onto something for support. Bend your torso forward and at the same time swing your raised leg slowly backwards. You should feel the tension in your glutes and hamstrings, not your lower back. Repeat a few times and then switch legs.
- Chair squat: Stand with your feet slightly apart with a chair behind you. Slowly bend at the knees in a controlled manner until your rear barely touches the chair. Then return to starting position.
- One-leg balance: From a standing position, lift one leg in front of you keeping the lifted leg as straight as possible with the toe pointed and hold the position for 2-3 seconds. Move the leg to your side and again hold position. Finally, move the leg behind you and hold for a few seconds. Repeat a couple of times and then switch legs.
- Weight-training: Doing a few dumbbell curls, overhead presses, and lateral raises with light weights 2 times a week is a good way to increase bone density in your arms and shoulders in addition to building lean muscle tissue.
- Walking: According to research studies, brisk walking reduces the risk of hip fracture by about 40 to 60%. Gradually work up to about 30 to 45 minutes a day.
By performing a few or all these exercises regularly, you will be able to slow down loss of bone mass, improve overall health, and increase your energy levels to get the most out of life.
At The Carrell Clinic, we offer a broad range of comprehensive orthopedic care. Each physician is skilled in one or more special interest areas, such as pediatric orthopedics, sports injuries, arthroscopy, as well as disorders of individual regions such as the spine, shoulder, elbow, hip, knee, foot and ankle. All of our physicians are fully trained in general orthopedics and are board certified. Contact The Carrell Clinic for an appointment today.