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    yoga and osteoporosis
    An_263664 posted:
    Has anyone found a great dvd that focuses on yoga and osteoporisis?
    I'm 54 and recently diagnosed and frustrated because I exercise regularly. Any suggestions?
    sherri_betz_pt_gcs responded:
    Hi There,
    You can see modifications and information on yoga that is safe for osteoporosis at Click the "Osteoporosis News" page for more info. Look for "Yoga for Osteoporosis" DVD coming out this fall! Best of luck with your bone building program.
    Sherri Betz, PT, GCS
    camila18 replied to sherri_betz_pt_gcs's response:
    Thank you for the information! I will look into it right away. I also have spinal stenosis. So figuring out exactly what exercises to do has been frustrating depending on which doctor I speak with. Would you recommend jogging? Up until a year ago I ran consistently.
    bonebabe replied to camila18's response:
    No jogging. The reason for that is that if the bone density in you spine is low (and your spinal stenosis/arthritis will show it as higher than it really is) the pounding jogging incurs on the spine could cause those tiny bones within the vertebrae to fracture. Those are the "honeycomb" bones that are encased in the harder bone of the spine. When they fracture, you don't feel a thing or have a clue this is happening until the last one supporting the vertebrae breaks. Then you have a compression - and you certainly will feel that.

    Yoga is very good for balance and overall well being. As noted in the above post, you will certainly have to modify some moves. The main thing to remember is to keep your spine straight - no forward bending from the waist and no twisting of the spine. Those can also fracture those tiny struts.
    camila18 replied to bonebabe's response:
    This is all so depressing! So are elliptical machines ok to use? As well as weights and yoga and Pilates? Thank you so much for all the great information!
    bonebabe replied to camila18's response:
    We advise our patients to avoid Pilates. The crunches and abs and twisting are too big a risk to take if your bone density is low.

    Elliptical machines are great. Anything you do on your feet is considered weight bearing.

    Weights can be used, but again, you need to be aware and modify. I don't know your fracture history, T-score or age, so my advice is based on the safest possible way to do it.

    I wouldn't lift more than 10 lbs. Certainly don't bend over to lift anything. I assume you're talking about hand weights. Chin ups would be fine to do if that's something you do.

    The yoga we already discussed.

    If you go to the National Osteoporosis Foundation website ( they have a whole section on this with illustrations of movements to make and avoid.

    Don't be discouraged. You can do plenty of stuff now that you're aware. Just modify.
    camila18 replied to bonebabe's response:
    Hi thank you again for all the great information!

    I'm 54 and never broken any bones. When I have been going to the gym I have been doing the machines not free weights. Usually on those I can handle more weight. Do you think that's ok?
    I've also been recently doing Pilates for Buff Bones. Are you familiar with that DVD?
    I'm basically trying to find an exercise program I can follow. It's all still pretty overwhelming to me. Some of the programs seem to be designed for older women who have not exercised regularly but I always have.

    I will check out the website you recommended too. Thanks
    beffigon responded:
    Just want to emphasize that the best yoga for OP is Iyengar yoga. It is a physical kind of yoga, which includes a lot of weight-bearing moves and stretches. I have practiced various kinds of yoga over many years, and while they are all good for our bodies and our minds, Iyengar yoga is the best for OP. Make sure you have a teacher that is familiar with OP, or at least is willing to learn about it, so that you can be guided as to what you should and should not do.
    camila18 replied to beffigon's response:
    I will definitely look into Iyengar yoga!
    Thanks for the information.
    kcypresslady12 replied to sherri_betz_pt_gcs's response:
    Thank you sherri I've been looking for a safe yoga video to start to with, so I think I will look for a beginners video at the site.
    Noahyes1 replied to bonebabe's response:
    I have arthritis and osteoporosis. I have been doing Pilate for two years, mat and reformers, chair etch. I know curl ups sit ups and crunches are a no no.. Can I keep doing it baring in mind that some of the exercises need to be avoided? Pilates helps me very much for the arthritis and makes my back always feel better when I do it.
    bonebabe replied to Noahyes1's response:
    Yes, if you and your instructor know how you can safely modify or sit out the particular exercises. These would be anything that bends the spine forward or twists it from side to side.
    camila18 replied to bonebabe's response:
    Are you familiar with treatments for osteoporosis? I have one doctor that insists I am too young to take meds even though I am already in menopause. I saw another doctor that said I should definitely be on medicine for osteoporosis. Most of what I read recommends exercise, nutrition and medications. Also in regards to exercising with weights I have been going to the gym and using the weight machines. Are you recommending to only use 10lb weights for everything? Do you happen to know where I could go for a safe exercise plan? I have always enjoyed exercising. Thank you for any info!
    bonebabe replied to camila18's response:
    Yes, I'm familiar with treatments. There are specific guidelines as to when a medication is recommended. Have you been without a period for one year? If so, you are postmenopausal.

    If your T-scores indicate osteoporosis, you need a medication.
    If your FRAX scores (only given if bone density results are in the osteopenic range) indicate a high fracture risk, you need a medication.

    If you've fractured a bone after the age of 40, you have a clinical diagnosis of osteoporosis regardless of T-score and need a medication.

    If you have T-scores in the osteopenic range (-1.1 to -2.4) with the presence of one other risk factor (more than 1 fall in the past 12 months, a fracture, not on hormone treatment, history of steroid treatment for > 12 weeks) you meet the guidelines for treatment.

    Some medications are approved for the treatment AND prevention of osteoporosis. Fosamax is one. You may ask your doctor about that, especially if you have a family history of osteoporosis or hip fracture.

    As for weight bearing - that doesn't mean using weights. It simply means anything you do on your feet. That's bearing your weight.

    If you go to the National Osteoporosis Foundation website ( you will see illustrations of safe and unsafe movements/exercises to do and not do. There is also a detailed chart of approved medications, their uses and side effects.

    Just FYI - any medication you might take will require that you have 1200 mg of calcium each day in order for the medication to work. Your body will only absorb about 500 mg at a time, so spread it out. Also 1000 IU of Vit D. A supplement with D will get you covered.
    camila18 replied to bonebabe's response:
    Thank you so much! I think I am going to focus on seeking a new physician. I already am postmenopausal and have osteoporosis. The wait and see that my physician follows really doesn't make sense to me now. Everything I read recommends medication. So I guess the issue now is what's the best medication for me and where can I find a physician who is competent in NYC and who accepts GHI. Please let me know if you have any suggestions. Thank you again for all the info

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