Menopause brings about a number of changes in a woman’s body, one of those inevitable changes being bone loss. When the ovaries stop producing estrogen during menopause, bone loss begins to occur and will continue as you get older. But by maintaining good bone health during this stage of life, you can help prevent osteoporosis, which is the significant loss of bone density. There are a number of great low-impact and high-impact exercises that are proven to help maintain and build bone health.
Practicing low-impact weight-bearing exercises is a good option for women who need to ease into exercising or have already experienced issues with their joints and muscles.
- Take a spin on a stationary bike. Here’s a helpful guide on getting started.
- Hop on an elliptical for 30 minutes and try turning up the resistance a little.
- Low-impact aerobics is another great option. Try searching Youtube for some guided classes.
- Lace-up your sneakers and go for a fast-paced walk outside or on a treadmill.
- Try something new with a Tai Chi class. Tai Chi is also known to help improve balance and posture.
If you feel that you are ready for more, high-impact weight-bearing exercises also work to help build bone health and maintain bone strength.
- Take your fast-paced walk to the next level by introducing running or jogging into your exercise routine. If you want to work your way up to a full run or jog, take it in intervals. Walk for 3 minutes, run or jog for 2, and repeat this pattern until you feel comfortable tackling a longer distance run or jog.
- Improve your coordination with a fun high-impact dance class like Zumba. Clear a space in your living room and get moving!
- Using a stair-step machine is another great way to get your heart rate up and build bone health. If you have stairs in your house, get creative, and use your stairs to get in a good high-impact exercise.
- Aerobics classes can also be tailored to give you a high-impact exercise.
- If you live near hiking trails, pack your water bottle and hiking stick for outdoor activity.
- Grab a partner and head to the courts for a game of tennis.
- Pull out your jump rope for a nostalgic, yet high-impact exercise.
By incorporating high-impact or low-impact exercises into your daily routine along with a diet rich in calcium and vitamin D, you are working to strengthen your bones and improve overall bone health during menopause.
Request an Appointment
Dr. Karen Clark of Chapel Hill Gynecology is a certified menopause practitioner, experienced in helping patients manage the symptoms of menopause, including bone loss. To schedule an appointment, call (919) 960-2720. Chapel Hill Gynecology is open for office visits (using recommended protocols for preventing COVID-19 exposure) as well as telemedicine visits.