According to a new study published in the Journal of Bone and Mineral Research, older men who spend time hopping or jumping on a daily basis can strengthen their hip bones and reduce the risk of a fracture following a fall.
As the body ages, the bones become thinner. This can result in localized thinning with the hip bones, which is associated with a higher risk of a fracture.
For the study, researchers gathered 34 men over the age of 65 and had them hop for two minutes a day over a period of one year. The men were instructed to only hop on one leg so the other leg could be used for comparison.
Researchers discovered that bone mass increased by seven percent in parts of the exercised hip’s cortex. They also discovered an increase in the layer density of the spongy bone found underneath the cortex.
These effects were also present in the thinnest areas of the hip bone—the parts of the hip that are most susceptible to fractures following a fall. The results could possibly help with preventing and managing osteoporosis, a disease responsible for more than 8.9 million fractures worldwide each year.
Study authors can’t confirm if the same results would be seen in women since the participants were all men. Furthermore, the participants didn’t have osteoporosis, so it’s still unclear if these hopping exercises would be safe for osteoporosis patients.
The study’s senior author, Dr. Katherine Brooke-Wavell, still concludes that “…over time, our study shows that brief hopping or jumping exercises that target specific regions of the hip, could increase bone strength and reduce the chances of hip fracture.”
Sources for Today’s Article:
Allison, S.J., et al, “The influence of high-impact exercise on cortical and trabecular bone mineral content and 3D distribution across the proximal femur in older men: A randomized controlled unilateral intervention,”Journal of Bone and Mineral Research August 17, 2015, doi:10.1002/jbmr.2499.
Paddock, C., “Hopping for 2 minutes a day may reduce risk of hip fracture,” Medical News Today web site, September 14, 2015; http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/299434.php.