Exercise is essential to improve the health of your bones and joints. Bones play several important bodily roles, including providing structure and support, allowing you to move and stay upright. They protect your vital organs, such as the brain and heart, from injury.

Bones also store minerals, such as calcium and phosphorus, essential for maintaining healthy bones and teeth. Finally, bones produce blood cells, which help to carry oxygen and nutrients throughout the body.

Variety is good for bones, which you can achieve with different movements, directions and speeds – in an activity like dancing for example. Short bursts of activity may be best, such as running followed by a jog, or jogging followed by a walk.

Keep reading to learn more about specific activities that have been shown to promote healthy and strong bones.

Exercise and Bone Health

Most people are familiar with many of the benefits of exercise, such as improving muscle strength and endurance, reducing the risk for heart disease and stroke, and preventing obesity. Perhaps not as well understood is the importance of regular physical activity in building and maintaining healthy bones. Inactivity causes loss of bone!

Exercise works on bones much like it works on muscles. Activities that put stress on bones stimulate extra deposits of calcium and nudge bone-forming cells into action. The tugging and pushing on bone that occur during strength and power training provide the stress. 

Weight-bearing exercise has been shown to increase bone density and improve bone health. Weight-bearing exercise is a physical activity we perform while on our feet and legs that works the muscles and bones against gravity. During weight-bearing activity, the muscles and tendons apply tension to the bones, which stimulates the bones to produce more bone tissue. As a result, bones become stronger and denser and the risk of osteopenia, osteoporosis, and fractures decreases.

Best Bone Strengthening Activities

Your bones are living, growing, and changing throughout your life, helping keep you healthy and active well into your golden years. To help you reach those years in the best health possible, here are the best bone-strengthening activities you can do at home to ensure that your bones stay strong.

1. Weight-Bearing Activities

Weightbearing describes any activity you do that works your bones and muscles against gravity. When your feet and legs carry your body weight, more stress is placed on your bones, making your bones work harder. Weight-bearing exercise after young adulthood can help prevent further bone loss and strengthen bone.

Examples of High-Impact Weight-Bearing Exercises:

  • Jumping Rope

Bone tissue is dynamic, engaged in a constant cycle of building and breaking down. When your bones are put under repeated stress, such as by jumping rope, it stimulates them to build back thicker and stronger.

High-impact activities like jump rope have been shown to provide a force that is high enough to build bone density. Compared to other, lower-impact exercises, “this is going to be much better for you in terms of building your bone density

  • Dancing

Dancing is a fantastic form of exercise that will not actually feel like exercise. It is something fun and engaging you can do in the comfort of your home or at a class by yourself or with a friend. Most people feel as if time flies by as they move around their dance floor. 

Going to a dance class, whether it is community-run or professional run, is a great way to stay social. You can easily invite other friends and make new ones who enjoy dancing as much as you do. Which will help you stay motivated when your weekly dance class comes around all while making efforts towards your bone’s health. 

  • Hiking

Hiking is a great way to get in some long strolls and incline walking to increase the health of your bones, muscles, and joints. It reduces stiffness by lubricating and strengthening the muscles that support the joints. Hiking also helps stimulate bone growth and aids in the prevention of osteoporosis. Since hiking is a form of weight-bearing exercise, some consider it to provide minimal stress on the joints. 

  • Jogging

While walking poses benefits to seniors’ bone and muscle condition. Now take it up a notch with jogging. Running at a steady pace allows you to build muscle and help strengthen your bones. In turn, your range of motion is well maintained, allowing you to do your usual things and more even as you age. It is recommended that seniors could jog at least 5 to 10 minutes a day, or 50 minutes each week to gain benefits.

  • Stair Climbing

If you have stairs at home and walking outside is not your thing, you can try going against gravity with stairs walking at home instead. Climbing stairs on a daily basis will help you achieve healthy body weight and help build and maintain healthy bones, muscles, and joints as you age. In turn, this exercise increases leg power in the long run. To add, stair climbing greatly helps in postmenopausal women’s bone density.

The great thing about stair walking is that this can be accumulated throughout the day. It is recommended to climb up and down a flight of stairs for a good 30 minutes daily. This can be squeezed in while working on your household chores or going to and from the living room and the bedroom.


Examples Of Low-Impact Activities Include

  • Walking

While walking may not be a high-intensity workout, it certainly comes with many health benefits. Not only is walking great for heart health, boosting your mood, maintaining healthy weight, and improving circulation, but also for keeping your muscles and joints strong and healthy. When you have healthy and strong muscles and joints, you are less susceptible to injury and reduce your risk of osteoporosis or other bone-density related conditions. Try to incorporate at least 30 minutes of walking each day for five days a week to see the benefits of walking on the musculoskeletal system (muscles, bones, ligaments, tendons and joints).

  • Using Elliptical Training Machines

Elliptical training machines are a great way to strengthen bones and stay youthful. Elliptical machines provide a low-impact workout that is easy on the joints. This makes them ideal for people of all ages, including older adults. Elliptical training machines are also a great way to improve balance and coordination. This can help to prevent falls and other accidents.

Overall, elliptical training machines are a great way to stay youthful and fit. They provide a low-impact workout that is easy on the joints and can help to improve balance and coordination.

  • Swimming

Swimming is a great low-impact activity that is easy on your joints. Since swimming is weightless, it helps reduce the stress on your joints, making it a great activity for people with joint pain or arthritis. Swimming also improves cardiovascular health and helps build muscle, supporting your bones. If you are not a strong swimmer, start with simple strokes, such as the breaststroke or freestyle, and work your way up to more challenging strokes.

  • Yoga

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle as you age does not require overstretching your muscles and bones. One of the best ways to do that is by doing yoga. Whether taking yoga classes or doing it at home, this is one of the best forms of exercise for older adults.

While there have yet to be studies that prove the benefits of yoga on muscle strength, this exercise can strengthen bones and prevent the onset of osteoporosis. Furthermore, yoga can enhance one’s balance, movement, mobility, and strength, and at the same time, help reduce pains that come along with aging.


2. Strength-Training Exercise

During strength-training activities, resistance is added to movement in order to make muscles work harder and, over time, become stronger. Although resistance exercises focus on increasing muscle mass, they also put stress on bones and have bone-building capacity.

Common types of strength training include weight machines, free weights, and exercises (such as push-ups) that use your own body weight. Elastic bands can also be used to add resistance to exercises.

  • Weightlifting

Most people are aware that weightlifting can help build and maintain muscle mass and strength, but it may seem counterintuitive to think about lifting heavy weights when your bones aren’t as strong. Nearly 20% of women and 5% of men aged 50 and over have osteoporosis, a condition where bones become weak and more likely to break. And not enough of them are lifting weights. Here’s how it can help and tips to get started.

Weightlifting, or strength training, can slow bone loss and some studies show it can even build bone, which is important for anyone – osteoporosis diagnosis or not — as it helps offset the bone mass you naturally lose as you age.

  • Functional Movements 

There are many benefits to functional movements like standing and rising on your toes. These movements help to improve balance and coordination and can also strengthen the muscles in your feet and legs. Additionally, functional movements can help to improve your posture and reduce the risk of injuries.

  • Cycling

Cycling is a great way to get in some exercise and fresh air, and it’s an excellent form of transportation if you don’t have access to a car. You can cycle anywhere, anytime–indoors or outdoors, in any weather condition. 

All you need is a bike and a helmet! You can buy both at most stores that sell sporting goods or outdoor equipment. Take advantage of public transportation if possible–many cities have bike racks available on buses so people can bring their bikes along with them when they are traveling around town.


Risk Factors For Bone Health Problems

Several risk factors can increase the chances of developing bone health problems. 

These risk factors include:

  • Age: Older adults are at a higher risk of developing osteoporosis and other bone diseases.
  • Gender: Women are at a higher risk of developing osteoporosis than men.
  • Race: Caucasians and Asians are at a higher risk of developing osteoporosis than other racial groups.
  • Diet: A diet low in calcium can increase the risk of developing osteoporosis.
  • Lifestyle: A sedentary lifestyle can increase the risk of developing osteoporosis. Smoking and drinking alcohol can also increase the risk for these conditions.
  • Family History: If you have a family member with osteoporosis or another bone disease, you may be at a higher risk for developing these conditions.
  • Certain Medications: Some medications, such as steroids and anticonvulsants, can increase the risk of developing osteoporosis.

Ask Your Doctor

If you are concerned about your bone health or your risk factors for osteoporosis, including a recent bone fracture, consult your doctor. He or she might recommend a bone density test. The results will help your doctor gauge your bone density and determine your rate of bone loss. By evaluating this information and your risk factors, your doctor can assess whether you might be a candidate for medication to help slow bone loss.

To learn more about bone health or to schedule an appointment with one of our specialists, call us at 800-698-1280.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *