Osteoporosis: A Preventable Disease

Osteoporosis is a common disease affecting over 1 million of Australians. This disease makes bone  become brittle leading to a higher risk of breaks. Osteoporosis occurs when bones lose minerals, such as calcium, more quickly than the body can replace them. Calcium plays a major role in absorption of vitamin D in our bodies. Reduced amount of calcium leads to deficiency of vitamin D  and hence results into a loss of bone density/thickness.

Osteoporosis usually has no symptoms until a fracture occurs this is why osteoporosis is often called the silent disease. Any bone can be affected by osteoporosis, but the most common sites are the hip, spine and wrist.

Most common causes and risk factors of osteoporosis are:

  • Female > male
  • Menopause
  • Family history of osteoporosis
  • Personal history of fracture in adulthood
  • Low levels of calcium and vitamin D
  • Cigarette smoking
  • Excessive alcohol consumption
  • Sedentary life style
  • Poor nutrition or malabsorption
  • Body weight: Thin body built or excessive weight

Some useful tips to prevent osteoporosis:

  • The greater the bone mineral content at the time of peak bone mass, the more bone an individual can afford to lose. Thus the period of early adolescence is a window of opportunity to maximise  the bone mass.
  • Adequate intake and absorption of calcium and vitamin D appeared to maximise the effects of exercise on bone.
  • Avoid lengthy periods of bed rest. Loss of bone mass associated with bed rest is thought to be approximately 4% a month.
  • Variety of weight bearing, high impact activities should be encouraged.

High impact weight bearing exercises help to built bones and make them strong. Some examples of high impact weight bearing exercises are dancing, jogging, running, stair climbing, hiking, skipping rope, high impact aerobics.

If you have broken a bone due to osteoporosis or are at risk of breaking a bone, then low impact weight bearing exercises are a safe alternative to keep your bones strong. Some examples of low impact weight bearing exercises are walking, resistance based pilates exercises, elastic band exercises, lifting free weights, low impact aerobics, elliptical training machines and functional movements from everyday life.

Osteoporosis Pilates Class

We are introducing a new Pilates class focusing on preventing/managing osteoporosis. This class will include both high impact and low impact weight bearing exercises and will be tailored to individual needs.

The class will also help you in improving core stability, strength, balance and flexibility.

If you are interested in joining the class or have any questions, please feel free to call us on 9297 1188.


Rajneet Kaur


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