Bones are found in almost all parts of your body. We have about 206 bones in the human skeleton.
Right from birth, they grow in mass and density, and length till after a certain age where they start getting weak.
They can get so weak that the least strain on them can get the bone broken.
One widely known medical condition that causes major bone loss as the body ages is Osteoporosis.
This is a disease that causes the bones to become very brittle and break easily.
The National Osteoporosis Foundation reported that approximately 10 million Americans have Osteoporosis. And another 44 million have low bone density.
A few things like our genes determine our bone strength.
But before you feel doomed with bad genes, here’s the good news:
Research has shown the positive impact and effect exercises have on improving bone strength.
We can improve bone strength with simple exercises, together with healthy eating.
We will go over eleven exercises that you can do to improve bone strength.
Pick one of these exercises each day for eleven minutes, and your bones will be thankful.
We will group the eleven exercises into two categories: weight-bearing and resistance exercises.
Let’s get started, shall we?
Group 1: Weight-Bearing Exercises
Weight-bearing exercises are exercises force you to go against the force of gravity.
If you want to improve bone strength and density, squats are a perfect workout.
In as much as they help build lean muscles, they do a good job keeping your bone density and mass in check.
You could even say you killing two birds with one stone which helps you to achieve your fitness goals faster.
- To do this exercise, stand shoulder-width apart but slightly more. Be sure to stand firm.
- Stretch out your arms before you and keep them straight.
- Bend the body down. Let the knees bend at approximately 90 degrees.
- Stay in this position for about two seconds and get back up. As you go down, make sure the back is straight; no bends.
- Do this ten times for four sets.
2. Single leg standing support
This exercise puts all the pressure on one leg at a time forcing all the body weight on the leg.
It is perfect for improving bone strength by all standards. For this, all you need is a chair for support. You can decide to go through it without the chair. Stand at shoulder-width apart.
- Bend the knee and lift it backward.
- Make sure the bend is almost 90 degrees and the thighs are parallel to the ground.
- Stay in this position for 10 to 15 seconds and move to the other leg.
3. Wall sits
This works almost like normal squats. It does the same thing by focusing pressure on the bones at the legs.
- Stand at shoulder-width apart with your feet firmly planted on the ground while leaning against a wall.
- Stretch out your arms in front of you or keep it folded on your body.
- Bend your knees out at almost 90 degrees.
- Keeping your back straight, stay in this position for ten seconds, and get up.
- Pause for about ten seconds and go back into position.
You would need a lower step or a small riser or anything slightly higher than your feet that can serve as a step.
- Stand in front of your step and place one leg on the step.
- Add the other leg. Then take one leg down followed by the other.
- Be sure to note that the entire foot must rest on the step; half of your foot shouldn’t be dangling when you take that step.
5. Forward lunges
- Stand with your feet apart.
- Stretch one leg in front of you and bend it. Be sure to bend the leg behind too.
- Make sure this bend is at a 90 degrees angle or close to that. The back knee shouldn’t touch the ground. It shouldn’t.
- Now pressing on the heel in front of you, raise the body back up to shoulder-width apart standing position.
Group 2: Resistance Exercises
Resistance exercises are exercises where the body moves against resistance provided by the body’s gravity or weight. It improves muscle strength and endurance in the process.
6. Bicep curls
Bicep curls are excellent resistance exercises, especially if you want to improve bone strength.
Imagine going against all the odds to lift that dumbbell through to finish up your last rep. That’s the resistance you need to beat to get the job done and that helps to improve your bone strength.
- Take a dumbbell in each hand. you could stand or sit; whichever posture you are comfortable in.
- Hold the weights firmly and pull it in towards your chest and bring it back down.
- Do that ten times for three sets.
7. Shoulder lifts
The resistance is focused on the shoulders and the arms in this exercise.
- Start by holding weights standing in a neutral position.
- Hold the weights at your sides of your body.
- Gently lift your arms in front of you but not past your shoulder level.
- Return your hands to its original position and lift them back up.
- Repeat this process ten times for four sets.
8. Hamstring curls
This is a good exercise for the bones in both legs as well as the muscles.
- Stand shoulder-width apart by holding on to something to support you. It shouldn’t be movable (a piece of furniture preferably).
- Stretch one leg back until you are resting on your toes.
- Raise that leg upwards until your heels touch your buttocks and go back to the starting position.
- Repeat that process ten times and do the same to the other leg.
9. Hip leg lifts
Get a sturdy item (a piece of furniture) for support for this exercise.
- Stand in a neutral position at shoulder-hip length.
- With one leg as straight as possible, lift the other one sideways about 6 inches off the ground.
- Lower the leg and repeat this lift 10 to 15 times. Repeat the same process on the other leg.
This core exercise uses all the bones in the body by supporting the entire body weight; a perfect example of what resistance exercise is all about.
- Lie down on your stomach and lift the body by resting on your toes.
- Place the side of the forearms on the floor as support for the entire body.
- Try as much as possible to keep the entire body straight. You could leave your gaze on the floor or straight up ahead of you.
- Stay in this position for ten seconds and rest.
11. Side planks
This is almost like the planks but in this position, you are on your side with your feet stacking on each other.
- Rest the side of your forearm on the floor to support your body.
- You could leave the other arm resting on your body or your waist.
- Stay in this position for ten seconds.
Any of these easy exercises can take only eleven minutes. You can do two or three or even all in a matter of eleven seconds. You can decide to improve your bone strength as part of your morning exercise before your shower or during office hours.