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Planning Retirement Online

Give your bones a boost
                               December 2005 

Beautiful Bones Without Hormones: The All-new Natural Diet and Exercise Program to Reduce the Risk of Osteoporosis and Keep Your Bones Healthy and Strong  

Give your bones a boost

says the National Osteoporosis Society

Bone is the vital scaffolding that supports us through life.


Our skeleton is living tissue which needs a good workout just like any other part of the body. The National Osteoporosis Society has come up with some bone-boosting exercises to get your skeleton fit whatever your age.


Just like muscles, bones suffer if they are not used. They need regular weight-bearing exercise, which puts force through the bone, stimulating growth and therefore strength. However, as we get older, the emphasis changes to keeping our muscles strong so that our balance and strength improve so that we are less likely to fall over and suffer a fracture if we have low-bone density.


  • Stair-climbing – forget the escalator or lift and head for the stairs in the office, department store, supermarket or shopping mall. Take one flight at a time if you’re not used to it and build up your stamina over time!

  • Tai Chi – this ancient form of Chinese martial arts is good for improving posture and balance in older people, vital for lessening risk of a fall and therefore breaking a bone if you have osteoporosis.

  • Walking – enjoying a brisk walk every day, rather than jogging which can be hard on the joints, is great for older people. It’s an easy and free way to a fitter, healthier older age.

  • Weight training – the slow, controlled lifting of weights, best done in a gym with advice from an instructor, will increase bone density and makes your muscles stronger if you train three times a week on non-consecutive days.

  • Tennis – this is another high impact but enjoyable sport that builds bone density. Research has shown that professional tennis players have much higher bone density in their serving arm than their non-serving arm!

  • Exercise to music classes –when you are older, gentle classes (like line dancing) can be good for improving muscle strength, helping to prevent falls.

  • Exercise from your armchair – yes it is possible! For the frail older person, there are plenty of chair-based exercises to maintain and improve muscle strength which could help to prevent a fall and fracture.

The National Osteoporosis Society’s booklet Exercise and Bone Health is crammed with useful information on how to get your bones fit for life. The charity produces a booklet aimed at those who have osteoporosis called Exercise and Osteoporosis and Exercise for Strong Bones, an easy-to-follow guide to exercises to reduce risk of osteoporosis. Call 01761 471771 today to buy your copy or log onto



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