“Your bones are for life. Look after them and they will carry you far”- This famous saying definitely has some grounds. Bones are as important as any other organ of the body; without bones, our body is just flesh. You have to agree that our sedentary lifestyle and unhealthy eating habits have made our bones suffer from weak bones and osteoporosis. But, it’s not too late. You can still keep your bones happy and healthy just by doing a few exercises regularly. Wanna know? Let’s go.
How exercise can help with bone health?
This question must’ve popped into your mind due to the myths surrounding the relationship between exercise and bone health. People believe that doing exercise can only help with their muscular health and have no role in improving bone health. Let us break this myth for you.
Bones are not some lifeless part of the body, instead, they are living tissues that keep growing or shrinking based on our lifestyle and dietary habits. People who exercise regularly have been reported achieving maximum bone density and strength, which determines the health of bone. Also, people who exercise have more muscle strength and improved balance, which minimizes the risk of falls and bone fractures.
Best exercises for bone health
Bones, like our body, stay strong if we keep them moving through exercise. But, not every other exercise can be good for your bone health. Exercises that engage your muscle strength to put pressure on the bones are the ones resulting in healthy bones. Such exercises are known as weight-bearing exercises. So, which exercises can be considered best for bone health? Let’s take a look.
1. Brisk Walk
Let’s take off with the most simple yet highly beneficial exercise. Walking never goes out of fitness fashion as it keeps improving your bones and overall health. Walking puts a balanced pressure on both of your legs, making your bones strong without causing any joint pains. However, according to your age or medical condition, the speed of walking can be adjusted.
2. Sit to Stand
Another very simple exercise, that is easy to perform and has no restriction on the specific place for it to perform. To perform this workout, sit on a chair or a bench, with your back straight and feet placed a bit wider than shoulder width. Now, slowly stand up while keeping your body straight. And then sit again to repeat this exercise as many times as possible. This exercise will strengthen your thigh and hips muscles and will improve the mobility of the pelvic joint.
3. Bicep Curls
The name might sound heavy, but it’s a really good exercise to work out the tissues of the arms’ bones. This exercise needs you to hold a dumbbell of equal weight in both of your hands and pull your arms towards your chest. Lower down to the initial position and repeat again to increase the muscle mass of the biceps and improve the bone strength.
4. Foot Stomps
We all know the rhyme where it goes like “if you are happy and you know it stomps your feet”. Just like that, if you want to keep your bones healthy, stomp your feet. Stand straight and stomp your foot repeatedly for 4 to 5 times, as if you are crushing something under your feet. Repeat the exercise on both feet, alternatively. This exercise is best for improving the strength of bones present in our lower body. It also works magic for people suffering from osteoporosis.
5. Standing Leg Lifts
Even simple standing for a certain time can help in bone strengthening. But to target other bones in the body like the hip bone, it’s necessary to modify your standing pattern. To perform this exercise, stand straight with both feet at hip-width apart. While standing on one leg, start moving another leg away from the ground, in the upward direction. As soon as you feel tension, take a pause in that position and then lower your leg after a few seconds. Repeat this exercise on both legs.
These are some major exercises that can be performed to improve the health of every bone in the body. There are many other exercises that can also be followed to achieve the best bone health. Some of them are:
- Stair climbing, stamping
- Racket sports, volleyball, basketball
- Ball sit
- Squats, lunges, push-ups
- Standing hip abduction/flexion/extension
- Cervical and thoracic extension
- Standing Y, W, T
If you are suffering from any medical condition related to bones like osteoporosis, you should avoid the exercises which will put too much strain on your bones. Such exercises include running, hiking, jumping rope, and climbing. These exercises can be really challenging and might increase the risk of fractures due to extra pressure. However, if you are not experiencing any medical issues, you can always incorporate these exercises into your routine to improve your bone strength.
Another precaution to be kept in mind is to start slowly, and not to perform all the exercises for bone health at a time. You can try them one by one and when your body and bones feel comfortable with it, you can mix two to three workouts to work out the bones of the whole body, simultaneously. You also need to make wise food choices, rich in calcium that will eventually help speed up the bone-strengthening process via exercise.
Bones, like any other part of our body, need our care to nourish and stay healthy. Exercise is the best possible way to keep our bones strong and prevent the risk of their deterioration. However, only the right choice of exercises can make this happen which will put balanced pressure on the bones, just enough for their growth. So, it’s better to start working towards the better health of your bones right away, before it’s too late.
I look up to fitness as a lifestyle and love to pen down about it. I have 2 years of experience in content writing and I am here to share my research and knowledge on health and fitness.