All everyone can talk about these days is how much exercise can benefit your health. It’s like exercise is the solution for every disease you can think of. To a great extent, it is true. Whether you want to prevent lifestyle diseases or you want to recover from a surgery – the role of exercises is undeniable.
However, there is a contradictory notion in the atmosphere too. It says too much exercise can be bad for your bones’ health. Surprised? Well, it’s not anything new, just like the good old saying ‘too much of anything is bad’. The thing is many fitness-enthusiast people are opting for more and more challenging workouts. And due to lack of awareness, they often approach these routines wrongly which, in turn, weakens their bones.
Let’s weigh the benefits and limitations of exercises on your bones.
How Exercises Help Your Bones:
Exercises, in general, are a great way to stay healthy. They help in shedding the excess weight, improve metabolism, boost your immunity and even help you to de-stress and relax.
The most visible effect of proper exercise is that it builds muscle mass. Muscles and bones both become stronger when muscles push and pull against your bones. And this can be chiefly credited to weight-bearing exercises like swimming, cycling etc. Such exercises increase the activity of the bones and cause to form new bone tissues making bones denser and stronger.
However, the best of this benefit can be reaped if such exercises are done before the child hits puberty. Because it is up till then that a person acquires bone mass. After that, all you can do through those exercises is to preserve the quota of bone mass that you have acquired during your teenage.
When Exercises Hurt Your Bones:
Let’s start with the obvious. Careless exercises can cause sudden injuries, breathing difficulty, and fatigue. In fact, excessive exercise can increase the risk of severe injuries. How?
Well, your bones age just like you do. When you overwork your bones, they become weak and brittle. There are mainly two diseases you should worry about: Osteoarthritis (commonly, arthritis) and Osteoporosis.
Strenuous exercises create more friction between the bones making them ‘decay’ sooner. When that happens, the condition is called osteoarthritis. The other condition, called osteoporosis, where over time, your bone loses its density. It is more prominent in post-menopausal women and older men. However, the tendency of osteoporosis sets much early in life and wrong exercises can make your bones even frailer. For people with this condition, exercise-induced injury can cause much more severe damage as compared to non-osteoporotic people.
And needless to say, severe bone injuries will have life-lasting effects.
How Workout Challenges Impact Your Bones:
The popular workout challenges aim at general weight loss, localized weight loss, gaining muscle mass. Many of these workouts will also include supporting diets which again assist in losing weight, and adding muscle. What impact these exercises have on the bones are often overlooked. Plus, the general notion is that weight-lifting exercises are good for bones. But now we know better than that.
Sudden, unprepared, highly strenuous workout challenges just multiply the bad impacts wrong exercises exponentially. You run the risk of serious injuries and fast bone loss. In fact, such exercises not only harm your bones, but they can also have negative long-lasting effects on your muscle and nerves. So, before you run into any hyped or trendy workout challenges, check with an expert who can judge your physical strengths & qualities and tell you whether you should take up the challenge.
How Can I Know If My Bones Are At A Risk?
Say you are already on an exercise routine and you want to know if your bones’ health is at risk. Well, in that case, watch out for the following symptoms:
- You have missed your period. A misses period represents a lack of oestrogen in your body which makes bone weaker in women.
- Sudden and/or extreme loss of weight.
- You experience loss of appetite.
- You are obsessed with maintaining a specific weight-loss diet.
- You have suffered from a prior bone injury.
- You exercise to cope with depression or boredom etc.
How To Prepare For A Workout Challenge:
Prevention begins at a very early age. Weight exercises performed early on life can help you gain more bone density. Plus, if you exercise regularly or play a sport, you will become more balanced and flexible which will reduce your chances of gym-injuries and accidental falls.
Any routine of exercise must always be supplemented by a well-planned diet. To protect your bones, you must make sure that your diet is rich in calcium, phosphorus and Vit D.
In general, an adult recycles 10% bone mass of the body. Lack of exercise, however, will only result in loss of bone density and not recycle of it. Targetted exercises can ensure that the ‘new’ bone is as dense as the old one.
Your trainer may suggest you take some nutritional supplements if he thinks you are unable to meet the requirement through your diet. Under expert’s advice, feel free to use supplements. They are not medicines or drugs; supplements are only basic nutrition that compliments your regular diet.
Some exercises may require you to use some protective gears like knee wraps, proper shoes, etc. These are designed to reduce the strain on your body while not compromising on the effects of the exercise. So, do not forget to gear up before you hit the gym.
One of the most important factors in exercising is to do it properly. Especially if you are using an exercise machine or you are on a workout routine, you must consult a physical training expert before you start. An expert can evaluate your conditions and tell you how to proceed to achieve your target
Exercises should always be done with an aim to stay fit and healthy. Exercises are not an element of competition or a shortcut to weight loss. A planned regimen of exercise can benefit you hugely and a hasty one can cause severe damage to your health. If you have concerns about what kind of exercise will be beneficial for your bones, you can Consult Our Experts to get the best advice.
About The Hospital:
Neelima Hospitals is an aspiring ’go-to’ Multi-Specialty Medical Center for communities, that look for affordable and effective Healthcare facilities. Dr P Neelima & Dr P Srinivasulu, the founding members of Neelima Hospitals aspire to ‘serve middle-class people, who need efficient & effective medical treatment, at affordable prices’. Their strong conviction and guiding philosophy motivated them to establish Neelima Hospital in the year 2008.