Osteoporosis – Is Walking Enough?

When I turned 50 I decided to get serious about avoiding the osteoporosis that had plagued the last years of my mother’s life.

Getting a border collie who enjoyed a daily walk was a good start. My husband and I shared the job of the early morning walk, and even thought he was much more devoted to ensuring that Patch always had his daily walk, I usually managed 3-4 half hour walks a week.

osteoporosis-diagramAnother important ingredient in my routine was attending a weekly Core Gymball class. Not only did using light weights build up my overall strength, but the core strengthening exercises meant I no longer had chronic lower back pain and I could stand for long periods without discomfort. My balance improved, the tension and pain in my shoulder lessened – I was a convert!! I enjoyed the exercises, the guidance of my physio and the company of the group I exercised with.

BUT I understood from my reading that to avoid osteoporosis I needed to add in more vigorous bone loading exercises that would promote new, stronger bone growth. So I tried adding a weekly “CARDIO” class with the physios at Core Gymball: boxing, light weights, push ups, running / power walking, etc. Wow! For someone who has never done exercise classes like this is was a scary step but one I am so glad I took under the guidance of a wonderful team of physios. Slowly I got fitter and in no time I found I could exercise hard for a whole hour! Doing this class once a week with woman of all ages (yes I’m one of the oldest at 64!) is, I am sure, why my recent bone density scan showed no deterioration: alleluia and a big thank you to the physiotherapists at Core Gymball.

Christine Harrigan

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