Osteoporosis “The Silent Thief”, has affected more than 25 million persons in the United States. Osteoporosis is a disease associated with the reduction of bone mineral density and an increase in hip and vertebral fractures. The main areas of fractures in osteoporotic individuals consist of the lumbar and thoracic vertebrae, the neck of the femur, and the distal forearm. When you hear Osteoporosis, who comes to mind? Most of the time it is the female gender, well don’t forget the male counterpart.

Males and females reach peak bone mass about 35 years of age. A female may have bone lose in excess of 45%, by 80 years old, where a male of the same age may only have 25% bone loss. Females are more predisposed to osteoporosis due to an initial smaller bone mass and bone loss is accelerated at menopause. Nutritional factors also affect bone loss, the ingestion of dietary phosphorous from fast foods, crackers, hamburgers, potato chips, and especially soda. Compounding genetic and nutritional factors are the societal factors of physical activity. As one grows older, a more sedentary lifestyle is more prominent.

A way to curve “The Silent Thief” is to unleash the wolf! Wolf’s Law: when mechanical stress is applied to bone from strength training, the tissue responds by increasing the mass, density, and structural properties. Physical activity produces these stressors resulting in increased bone mineral density/bone mass. Research has shown that exercise intervention of 1 year is required to display significant changes in bone mineral density. This is due to the time exercise was initiated in the bone remodeling cycle. The bone remodeling cycle takes between 4-6 months. Just increasing you physical activity to a moderate level will result in a higher peak bone mass.

Weight bearing exercise is associated with greater bone mineral density than aerobic exercise alone. Aerobic exercise has shown the greatest increased in the Femoral Neck. The research concluded this is a result from the ground reactive forces in waking, jogging, and stair climbing. Increasing you resistive training in a circuit format that keeps your heart rate elevated will increase your peak bone mass while yielding a cardiac benefit at the same time. Physical activity, when properly utilized, has both short and long term benefits. Short term benefits include an increase in strength, prevention of injury, and enhanced daily function. The long term affects from physical activity is an increase in bone mass which can help prevent the debilitating effects of osteoporosis.

At Premier Fitness & Performance, our Adult group training program focuses on functional strength training in a circuit format that increases strength and cardiac output so both areas are achieved in the same workout. As our members say, it’s the best 45 minutes of their day!