Osteoporosis Safe Abdominal Exercises

core Dec 05, 2015

Receiving a diagnosis of osteoporosis can be frightening, but there is a great deal that you can do to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle. Osteoporosis is a condition of bone density loss leading to frailty of the bones themselves. This places the individual at greater risk for fractures during activities ranging from falling to simply coughing forcefully. It affects men and women of all ethnicities and backgrounds though it most commonly affects white and Asian women who have passed menopause. While the news of weak and brittle bones can cause one to feel anxious and cautious about physical activity, there is good news. Bones are made up of living tissue that is constantly in a state of construction. Bone cells are being built up and broken down on a daily basis, and the right kind of exercises can help stimulate and promote bone growth.

This video demonstrates safe and effective modifications during Pilates exercises for people with Osteoporosis.

1) The first modification is during chest lifting exercises, specifically during The Hundred. Instead of lifting the head, neck, and upper spine off the mat, you may leave the head and neck on the mat while still maintaining abdominal connection and pumping arms. You may also choose to place a towel or pillow beneath the head for a small supported lift of the head.

2) The second modification demonstrates using the same head position during Single Leg Stretch, again leaving the head and neck relaxed on the mat while maintaining abdominal connection and grasping right hand on the inner part of the bent left knee, left hand on the outer part of the left bent knee as the right leg reaches up with an extended leg.

3) Double leg stretch follows suite, maintaining the head and neck down throughout the exercise. Inhale and draw hands in toward bent knees, then exhale and lift arms overhead while extending legs long diagonally. Inhale sweep arms out and around to the hips, then exhale to lift overhead again.

4) The fourth modification is for Scissors. Keep head and neck down, and exhale pulling one leg extended towards your chest, and then exhale a little more, drawing the leg in closer. Inhale and switch legs, repeating the exhale as you draw the other leg in close to the chest.

5) Double Leg Lower follows, with head and neck down on the mat. Exhale to lower both legs down toward the mat, inhale to lift them back up. Maintain connection between your back and the mat throughout this exercise

Exercises to avoid include Criss-Cross due to the lifting and twisting movement of the spine. Instead, you can do toe taps, bringing one foot at a time down to the mat with an exhale from table-top position, inhaling to bring the foot back up to tabletop.

To return to a seated position, roll to one side with arm lifted overhead and use your arms to press you up, instead of rolling up.

Enjoy, and remember, safe exercise is an excellent way to dampen the effects of osteoporosis!

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