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Osteoporosis & S.A.F.E Exercise

Osteoporosis & S.A.F.E Exercise

Need stronger bones? Have you or do you know someone who has sustained a broken bone due to osteoporosis or “weak bones?"

Osteoporosis is a disorder that affects bone strength that in turn increases your risk of a broken bone or fracture. According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, "one in two women and up to one in four men over age 50 will break a bone due to osteoporosis."

The most common fracture sites are the spine, hip and wrist with the spine usually being the first to show signs of osteoporosis. The good news is that you can make your bones stronger and reduce your risk of fracture! This can be done by participating in a S.A.F.E. (skeletally appropriate for everyone) exercise program that includes weight-bearing and muscle contraction, the two major elements of bone strength.

If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with osteopenia (precursor to osteoporosis) or osteoporosis, here are some helpful hints you can do to help reduce the risk of fracture:

  1. Avoid excessive forward bending, twisting at the waist and lifting heavy objects.
  2. Practice good posture habits by sitting and standing with upright or tall postures; avoid slouching or rounding your spine and shoulders.
  3. Practice good techniques when lifting by using your legs (not your back!) and keep objects close to you when lifting.
  4. Participate in a S.A.F.E. exercise program as instructed by your Physical Therapist

So how do you get started? You will need a prescription from your physician. Valley Health offers several physical therapy outpatient clinics throughout the Shenandoah Valley. For more information, please visit this page