Dr. James C. Spaulding

Chiropractor - Edinboro, Pa.

Instrument Adjusting Certified
106 Waterford Street • Edinboro Pa 16412 • Send E-Mail
Phone: (814) 734-3422
Are You At Risk for Bone Fracture?

Low bone density, referred to as osteopenia, can lead to osteoporosis and risk of bone injury. This could include stress fractures, and other fractures. Postmenopausal women are particularly prone to osteoporosis because of lowered levels of estrogen.

Bones, like muscles, become stronger and denser as demand is regularly placed on them. In one study, older women who did high-intensity weight training two days per week for a year were able to increase their bone density by one percent, while a control group of women who did not exercise actually lost bone density at the rate of 1.8 to 2.5 percent in that same period of time.

A diet low in calcium and vitamin D is a risk factor for low bone density as well. Your diet should include at least 1,000 milligrams of calcium and from 200-600 international units of vitamin D. In addition, magnesium is needed to assimilate calcium into the system. Exercise, particularly resistance weight training, helps bone retain its calcium.

Studies are showing that bone density can increase by doing regular weight-bearing exercises, two to three times per week. These exercises might include running, hiking, jump roping, and stair running, but for our purposes the exercise of choice is resistance strength training utilizing cable-weight machines or gym weight machines. Gary Null, author of Get Healthy Now, reports that benefits can be experienced with as little as 15-30 minutes two to three times weekly.

What is resistance strength training?

Resistance training is a form of strength training in which each effort is performed against a specific opposing force. A resistance exercise may be either isometric, or isotonic.

Isometric exercise is a type of strength training in which the joint angle and muscle length do not change during contraction (the body part is holding still against the opposing force.) In doing an isometric exercise, you are pulling or pushing against an immovable object. And thus the exercise is static in nature. Actually, you could sit at your desk at work and do isometric exercises.

Isotonic exercise is strength training in which muscles go through concentric and eccentric contractions (the body part moving “in and out” against the opposing force in a controlled manner.) The exercise is thus dynamic in nature.

Whether you employ a resistance weight machine or a band system, you will be going through a full range of motion for the muscle, or muscle group, targeted.

“The goal of resistance training,” according to the American Sports Medicine Institute, “is to gradually and progressively overloading the musculoskeletal system so it gets stronger.” Stronger muscles do a better job of holding the joints together, but they also generate more mechanical stress on bones leading to greater bone density.
According to Carol Krucoff and Mitchell Krucoff, M.D., in their book Healing Moves, muscles and bones will get stronger in response to strength training regarless of your age.

Some health experts, according to the Krucoffs, call strength training, ‘the closest thing we’ve come to a fountain of youth.”

Dr. Jim Spaulding is a full-time practicing chiropractor of 37 years. He has written numerous articles on the subject of diet and exercise.

© 2013 Dr James C. Spaulding. All Rights Reserved.