Build bone strength and prevent falls     

Physical inactivity is a risk factor in developing osteoporosis in our elderly years.

Bobbi Moger

By Bobbi Moger/Contributor

Osteoporosis is a disorder in which bone density decreases and susceptibility to fracture increases.

Bone loss is a part of normal aging, however; with osteoporosis bone mass drops so that the risk of sustaining a fracture is elevated.

Osteoporosis and osteoporotic fractures are a major public health problem.  One in four women over the age of 50 will suffer an osteoporotic fracture. Spine, hip and wrist fractures are the most common. Women can lose up to 15 per cent of their bone mass in the 10 years around menopause.

Men also suffer from osteoporosis but this has only recently come to the general public’s attention. It is estimated one in eight men are affected.

Some of the factors that can cause an individual to lose bone faster than normal include hormonal and genetic factors, lifestyle factors including physical inactivity and nutrition and the use of some medications. When a senior already has porous, brittle bones due to osteoporosis, focusing on preventing falls is paramount in reducing the risk of fractures as a result of a fall. Some 30 per cent of those over 65 fall at least once per year and half of that number fall recurrently. Once an individual suffers a fall, they may reduce their activity for fear of falling again.

Physical inactivity is an understood risk factor for osteoporosis. Even individuals who have led sedentary lives can increase bone mass by becoming more active.

Balance and resistance training is the treatment that can improve low bone density and muscle mass which promotes strength gain and improve balance. The better balance one acquires, the more independence and confidence with fewer falls and fractures.

BC Women’s Hospital and Health Center has designed a specialized Osteofit fitness program especially for those with osteoporosis, osteopenia (precursor to osteoporosis) and individuals whose goals are to increase bone mass and prevent falls.

These classes focus on improving strength, posture, balance and agility through the use of functional exercises, agility and resistance training.

Participants can improve their ability to perform activities of daily living including the ability to rise up from chairs, get in and out of bed, go to the toilet without assistance and groom themselves.

Other important objectives of this program are to decrease participant’s fear of exercise and promote active living and joy of movement with ability-appropriate exercises, education on exercise safety and opportunities to make new friends. For more information on the Osteofit program, call 250-317-3508.

Bobbi Moger is a seniors’ fitness specialist in Kelowna.


Just Posted

Okanagan Wildfires: An afternoon update on wildfires and evacuations

A Sunday afternoon look at the major wildfires impacting the Okanagan and Similkameen.

Mediation talks break off in casino strike

Gateway and BCGEU have no new date set for mediation

Motorcyclist taken to hospital following crash near Vernon

Extent of injuries not yet known following motorcycle in ditch on Commonage Road Sunday, July 22

All-Indigenous teams break new ground, making BC Games history

This is the first time there have been dedicated Indigenous teams at the BC Summer Games

Canada to resettle dozens of White Helmets and their families from Syria

There are fears the volunteers would become a target for government troops

Francesco Molinari wins British Open at Carnoustie

It is his first win at a major and the first by an Italian

Government sets full-time salary range for Justin Trudeau’s nanny

At its top range, the order works out to a rate of $21.79 per hour, assuming a 40-hour work week

ZONE 2: Okanagan twins bring ultimate competition to the BC Games

Brothers Connor and Holden Berrisford are each other’s main motivators

Recovery high schools could help teens before addiction takes hold: B.C. parents

Schools could provide mental health supports and let parents discuss their children’s drug use openly

Haida Gwaii village faces housing crisis, targets short-term rentals

Housing is tight and the village is pretty close to zero vacancy

B.C. VIEWS: Unions regain control of public construction

B.C.’s 40-year battle swings back to international big labour

B.C. mining company, involved in 2014 spill, ordered to pay lost wages

Mount Polley Mining Company must pay wages to 26 employees who were laid off without proper notice

Most Read