Understanding Bone Health and OsteoporosisApr 30, 2021 09:31AM ● By Peggy Normandin
Bone is a living tissue which continuously regenerates itself in a process known as remodeling. Bone formation is greater than bone resolution (breakdown) during youth and adolescence allowing us to build maximum bone density. Estrogen is one of the major preservers of bone tissue, keeping our bone breakdown in check through the middle years. Menopausal and post-menopausal women experience the loss of bone tissue partially due to the loss of estrogen. This puts them at a greater risk for osteoporosis.
Specific activities like Pilates can improve bone density. Building strong bones is possible, and fortunately, osteoporosis is preventable if measures are taken early. These measures include diet, lifestyle and exercise. Exercise is often recommended, but not in a specific manner. Pilates is great for building bones if done correctly and the following components are incorporated: impact, changes in direction and tempo, and force. Understanding what movements are not good for people with osteoporosis is also imperative.
Skeletal alignment is important for bone strength, as it improves force transmission through the bones. It also reduces the chance of falling and of spinal fractures. Bones are regenerated and strengthened through forces acting upon them during weight-bearing and impact activities, or while doing resistance exercises. According to Karena Thek Lineback, author of OsteoPilates, “Fifty percent of women and 12 percent of men will suffer an osteoporosis-related break after reaching the age of 50.”
Peggy Normandin is owner of Body Dynamics Pilates Studio, located at 1099 Mendon Rd., Cumberland, RI, where she teaches Pilates for Strong Core & Strong Bones classes. For more information, visit BodyDynamicsRI.com.