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The Effects of Weight Training on Bone Density of Premenopausal, Postmenopausal, and Elderly Women: A Review

Petranick Kimberly; Berg, Kris
The Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: August 1997
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ABSTRACTWeight training in young women aids development of a greater peak bone mass. In the postmenopausal years, resistance training may retard bone loss and delay risk of fracture. Elderly women who weight train may experience fewer falls due to improved strength and balance, and may be capable of increasing bone mass in selected regions. Most studies have been unable to demonstrate greater bone mass at skeletal sites that are vulnerable to bone loss and fracture such as the femoral neck, greater trochanter, and forearm. A common limitation in these studies is that resistance was moderate, typically ranging between 60 and 70% 1-RM. Also, few studies have extended beyond 1 year. Benefits from weight training may improve not only bone mass but also the overall quality of life through fewer falls and more years of independent living. Consequently, resistance training should be encouraged in women throughout the lifespan.

Weight training in young women aids development of a greater peak bone mass. In the postmenopausal years, resistance training may retard bone loss and delay risk of fracture. Elderly women who weight train may experience fewer falls due to improved strength and balance, and may be capable of increasing bone mass in selected regions. Most studies have been unable to demonstrate greater bone mass at skeletal sites that are vulnerable to bone loss and fracture such as the femoral neck, greater trochanter, and forearm. A common limitation in these studies is that resistance was moderate, typically ranging between 60 and 70% 1-RM. Also, few studies have extended beyond 1 year. Benefits from weight training may improve not only bone mass but also the overall quality of life through fewer falls and more years of independent living. Consequently, resistance training should be encouraged in women throughout the lifespan.

© 1997 National Strength and Conditioning Association