I declared 2011 “the year of exercise.” I studied the latest research, explored new exercises, breathed more deeply, stepped out with a weighted vest, and played for my bone health — all to learn everything I could about how exercise builds better bones.
The result for 2012 is my Exercising for Bone Health DVD — it's available for purchase now for Members of the Personal Program for Better Bones and is now a part of the program for new Members. I’ve chosen 35 minutes of what I consider the best of the best, and the format is a bit different than other DVDs you might have seen:
• First, I tell you how exercise plays a big role in preventing osteoporosis and strengthening bones.
• Second, I work with an instructor and a team of real women to let you sample five of the best types of exercise for bone health: Pilates, yoga, isometric exercises, strength training, and tai chi.
• Finally, we put them all together to give you an easy-to-follow workout.
Then the choice is yours — you may like the variety of the mixed modality workout or you might get inspired to design your own workout using one or more of your favorite modalities. After all, if you don’t enjoy it, you probably won’t do it.
As a preview for you, here’s a little more about each of the options:
Pilates: We warm up with Pilates, emphasizing posture, alignment, and balance. Pilates also builds whole body strength and helps improve control of smaller muscles. The natural deep breaths used in Pilates help us be mindful of whole-body alignment.
Yoga: Another mindful modality is yoga, unique in that its stretching seems to stimulate new bone formation. Yoga is also a weight bearing exercise in many interesting ways that occur when you shift your weight or hold a pose. We made sure that all the exercises can, as an option, be done easily from a chair and can increase in intensity and strength building over time.
Isometric exercise with Osteoball or resistance bands: Did you know that 10 exercises in 10 minutes can strength 10 muscle groups in the upper and lower body? That’s one of my top reasons for including isometric exercises. The exercises shown increase the strength of targeted muscle groups. Plus, they’re progressive — you can make your workout more challenging as you gain strength. And you will gain strength!
Weight bearing and strength training exercises: Weight loading and intense strength training exercises are the ones we most associate with bone building. The more loading and intensity, the more bone and muscle built. But you don’t have to be a power-lifter. In this DVD, our real-women volunteers use one and two pound weights.
Tai Chi: Tai chi exercises give us a physical and mental cool down. You probably know I’ve been recommending tai chi because of its ability to enhance the power of both the mind and body. But in addition, studies on tai chi report it has better compliance than more strenuous exercise programs.
Finally as a little extra, I include a special feature on the most common of all exercises — walking. In this add-on feature we take a stroll and play with walking, hopping, heel drops, using a weighted vest and even marching.
For many, this exercise DVD will be an addition to an already strong bone building program. For others, it may be a first step towards creating life-long bone health.