Physical activity and bone fractures

Leisure time physical activity, sports participation, and activities such as household chores reduce the risk of osteoporotic fractures in older women. Those who were very active had a 36 percent reduction in hip fracture incidence when compared with non-exercisers. Exercise may reduce risk in at least two ways (1) it may strengthen bones, (2) it may reduce the likelihood of falls.
An accompanying editorial points out that it is never too late to begin exercising. Elderly women should be encouraged to begin a low-intensity exercise program, and to increase it as they become stronger. (Annals of Internal medicine 129(2)81-88, 133-134, July 15, 1998)
Copyright 1998 Phylis A Austin


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