Vibration Platform Exercise Can Help Prevent Osteoporosis
Did you know that at least one in three women and one in five men will suffer a fracture from osteoporosis in their lifetime? A balanced diet and an active lifestyle can help prevent the risk of developing osteoporosis. In addition, exercising with a vibrating platform is a lesser known method that can also help improve bone mass. Here are some more details on the subject!
Osteoporosis and Risk Factors
Osteoporosis is a disease characterized by bone loss and bone fragility, which can increase the risk of fracture. Bone deterioration can occur for years before showing any symptoms, up until a fracture occurs. At this time, the disease has already reached a fairly advanced stage and becomes more difficult to treat. The most common fractures associated with osteoporosis are hip, vertebral, wrist, and shoulder. The main risk factors associated with osteoporosis are age, gender, low bone mineral density, and previous history of fracture. Osteoporosis-related fractures account for 80% of the fractures that occur in postmenopausal women over 50 years of age.
Nutrition and Physical Activity Keep Bones Healthy
Nutrition and physical activity can play a key role in keeping your bones healthy. Calcium and vitamin D are essential nutrients for maintaining good bone health. In the elderly, studies have shown that adequate calcium intake can slow down bone loss and reduce the risk of fractures. Vitamin D works in tandem with calcium by promoting its absorption, thereby contributing to bone health. Protein is also essential for building and repairing tissues, including bones. Weight bearing exercises such as walking, dancing, jogging and climbing stairs, as well as weight training, are recommended to slow down bone loss. Non weight bearing exercises, such as swimming and cycling, are not effective in maintaining bone mass.
Vibration Platform Training Can Help Increase Bone Mass
Vibrating platform training (also known as an oscillating platform or a power plate) was initially developed for astronauts. Studies showed that astronauts who spent a lot of time in space lost about 1 to 2% of their bone mass each month, and that bone loss could be prevented if they stood on a platform that emits vibrations for 10 to 20 minutes per day. Subsequently, this method has been studied in people who are at risk for osteoporosis and fractures. Studies show that vibration platform training may help increase bone mineral density in people at risk for osteoporosis or who have a low bone mass. This type of machine can be found in some fitness centers. According to a recent meta-analysis, vibration training would be effective in improving bone mineral density in the vertebrae and hips of postmenopausal women. In order to do so, it is recommended to perform a minimum of 2 sessions per week, for a duration of about 10 minutes per session. If you would like to try this type of workout, be sure to first consult with your doctor as well as a kinesiologist or a qualified health professional. Some types of vibrating platforms may not be suitable for pregnant women or people with heart problems, who have a pacemaker, or who have had hip or knee fractures or replacements in the past.
- Marín-Cascales et coll. (2018) Whole-body vibration training and bone health in postmenopausal women: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Medicine; 97:34.