Exercise and osteoporosis

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My mom was recently diagnosed with osteoporosis. Is it safe for her to exercise?

Exercise plays an important role in preventing and managing osteoporosis. However, your mom must talk to a physician or physiotherapist before starting or changing any exercise program as some exercise may be unsuitable for her due to her condition.

For people with osteoporosis, three types of exercise are recommended:

  • Strength training not only increases muscular strength and endurance but also slows mineral loss in bones. Your mom should focus on exercises that improve posture, stretch her upper back, and strengthen the muscles between her shoulder blades.
  • Weight-bearing aerobic activities require bones to support weight and include activities such as walking or dancing. The term “use it or lose it” applies to bones; these exercises will help to strengthen the bones in your mom’s lower extremity and spine, thus slowing mineral loss.
  • Flexibility exercises help maintain posture and prevent injury. Your mother should avoid exercises that flex her spine or cause her to bend at the waist.

Maintaining a consistent exercise program will greatly improve your mom’s quality of life.

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