If you want to strengthen your bones for life, start exercising. Certain activities work on the bone and make it denser. This can benefit you now and in the future.
Bones are hard on the outside and contain a yellow substance inside called marrow. Red blood cells are created in the marrow of the bone. But, the hard bone itself is made up of a matrix of cells that are continually breaking down and building back up for a stronger framework to your body.
Even in older age, you don’t have to be resigned to the fact that you are going to lose bone density and muscle mass. Preserve the bone you have and prevent loss of bone by starting an exercise program. As with any program, start slow and work your way up for success.
How to Build Strong Bones
Here are a few types of exercise to build stronger bones. When you use your bones, cells called osteoblasts build more bone. Other cells called osteoclasts break down damaged bone to make way for the new stronger bone.
* Use strength training – Many people think that weights are just for body builders. Everyone, no matter what their age, needs to add strength training to their exercise routine at least once or twice a week. While the muscle fibers are being broken down and built up stronger, the bone is also benefiting from lifting weight against gravity. You can use your own weight or add weights using a barbell or dumbbells.
* Work out at a higher intensity – The benefit of exercise comes when you increase your intensity over time. It increases your cardiovascular health but also the density of your bones. If you are starting out slowly with a mild workout, that’s fine. Your body will work to adjust and that will build bone as well. Stepping up your routine every week or two will put more work on the bones to perform, and that strengthens them.
* Challenge the body – When you perform the same exercise each day, over time you will stop seeing results and that includes bone strength. When you begin a new type of exercise, the body is challenged to learn a new routine and use new muscle groups. That also works the bones attached to the muscles.
* Use your body weight – Exercises that involve your body weight include step aerobics, jumping rope, running and tennis. That constant pounding is mixing movement with the downward pull of gravity to build stronger bone in response to the new demands.
Are you looking to build stronger bones? One of the best ways to do that is to exercise. Choose the right physical activity that will maximize bone growth.