Does Strength Training Improve Bone Health?

Updated: Jan 7

Osteoporosis and low bone mass are currently estimated to be a major public health threat for almost 54 million U.S. women and men aged 50 and older. Typically, when you're diagnosed with Osteoporosis or Osteopenia your doctor will recommend increasing your Calcium and Vitamin D intake, make changes to your medication routine, and suggest a reduction in alcohol and tobacco consumption. Less likely to be recommended, but beneficial in slowing the progression of low bone mass, is strength training. Although the understanding is limited as far as how much and how heavy, overall strength-based exercises have shown to reduce the risks (fragility of bones, high risk of fractures, etc.)associated with low bone mass. So, if strength training is an effective way to keep bone mass strong, why aren't more people doing it? Lack of knowledge/experience, fear of getting hurt or being embarrassed, and not finding it enjoyable are all popular reasons why many shy away from any type of strength training.

Although these concerns and fears are understandable, it's important to remember a few things:

  • You have to start somewhere.

  • It's okay to ask for help.