Are impact exercises an effective treatment of osteoporosis?

Updated: Jan 20, 2021
  • Author: Rachel Elizabeth Whitaker Elam, MD, MSc; Chief Editor: Herbert S Diamond, MD  more...
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In postmenopausal women, impact exercises can increase BMD in the hip and spine. Chien et al examined the efficacy of a 24-week aerobic exercise program consisting of treadmill walking followed by stepping exercises in osteopenic postmenopausal women aged 48-65 years. Women who exercised had increased bone mineral density in L2-L4 and the femoral neck, as well as improved quadriceps strength, muscular endurance, and peak exercise oxygen consumption (VO2 max), whereas values in the control group declined. [230]

Snow et al found increased BMD of the femoral neck, trochanter, and total hip in 18 postmenopausal women (average age, 64 years) who wore weighted vests and participated in jumping exercises 3 times per week for 32 weeks a year for 5 years. [231]

The results of a Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews study found that exercise may help prevent bone loss and fractures in postmenopausal women. The most effective type of exercise on BMD for the neck of the femur was found to be non–weight-bearing, high-force exercise, such as lower limb resistance strength training; combination exercise programs were most effective for BMD at the spine. [232]

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