Pilates and Osteoporosis



It is vital for anybody, whether or not that they have been diagnosed with Osteoporosis to increase done density as thicker bones are stronger bones. It has been proven that the most effective way of doing this is with resistance training. Resistance training has been shown to not only increase bone density but also to stop bone loss. Pilates is resistance training. The resistance you will be using is gravity – your own body weight. In some instances light hand weights can be added. Pilates can address factors that are of concern to those diagnosed with Osteopenia and Osteoporosis, these include:

  • Increased Bone density

  • Increased core strength

  • Improved balance

  • Improved flexibility

  • Improved posture

A couple of exercises below to help increase bone density, core strength and improve posture and strength.

Squat


Strengthens the front of the thighs (quadriceps), back of the thighs (hamstrings) and buttocks (gluteus maximus).

Exercise:

  1. Stand with feet shoulder-width apart, abdominals tight and your rib cage lifted. Arms are relaxed by your side.

  2. Keeping your back straight, bend knees and lower your body until thighs are almost parallel to the floor while lifting arms to shoulder height at the same time, using four slow counts.

  3. Hold this bent position for two slow counts. Keep your heels on the floor throughout movements.

  4. Return to starting position by straightening legs in two slow counts.

Performance tips:

  1. Squat down with the buttocks behind as if your were about to sit on a chair rather than bringing your knees forward as if you were about to kneel.

  2. Keep back straight and abdominals tight as you lower the body down. The bend is occurring in the hip and knees rather than in the lower back.

  3. Squeeze the buttocks and fronts of the thighs as you straighten up.

  4. Remember to use slow counts all throughout the exercise.

Note: If this bothers your lower back or your knees, practice in front of a mirror to check your position to see that you are doing it right. If it still bothers you, avoid this exercise.

Side Plank


Exercise Technique:

  1. Lie on your side, propping your body up on your elbow. Your elbow should be under your shoulder.

  2. Your legs should be straight.

  3. Lift your hips so that only your forearm and ankle are in contact with the floor.

  4. Your body should in a straight line. Keep your spine long and in neutral alignment

  5. Hold for 5 -10 seconds then slowly lower back to starting position.

Performance Tips:

  1. Lift your hips as high as possible without rolling forwards or back.

  2. Keep your hips stacked on top of each other.

  3. Keep your neck neutral and in line with your spine.

  4. Bend the bottom leg at the knee for support


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