10 WAYS TO MAKE YOUR BONES THICKER & STRONGER
1 USE CALCIUM SUPPLEMENTS to get at least 1000 mg of calcium per day. It's probably most effective if taken in 2-4 doses throughout the day. Increase calcium intake by 150 mg for every training hour beyond one per day. You will also take 400-800 IU of vitamin D per day to absorb this amount of calcium, according to Oregon Health & Science University
2 ADD YOGURT, MILK (any type) and other high-calcium products to your regular diet and post-ride refueling. Each serving contains 200-230 mg of calcium
3 CUT BACK ON SMOKING, ALCOHOL AND SODA, they are harmful for bone density.
4 Exercise at thrice A WEEK, year-round. Regular exercise help in bone-strengthening mechanism.
BACK EXERCISES TWICE A WEEK to strengthen the lower vertebrae, which might
become particularly weak in cycling due to lack of movement. Do back extensions
or, at home,do yoga's cobra pose: Lie on your stomach with your hands behind
your neck, or with your palms flat on the floor in front of you, shoulder-width
apart, then raise your head and chest off the floor. Hold for 5-30 seconds, and
repeat 3-10 times. You may also perform our stretching exercises.
6 RUN, HIKE, SKIP ROPE OR JUMP AROUND with your kids for 20-30 minutes, two to three times a week, to promote bone growth with weight-bearing vibration. "The impact must be significant," says Christine Snow, director of OSU's Bone Research Lab. A Johns Hopkins study found that light-intensity activities such as walking did not strengthen bones. Other studies hint that as few as two minutes of significant impact or vibration per day bestow some benefit.
7 STAND UP MORE OFTEN ON THE BIKE. It loads weight on your legs.
8 MOUNTAIN BIKE MORE. Sally Warner's study found significantly higher bone densities in mountain bikers, particularly in the upper body, probably from the occasional hiking, jarring ride and high-torque climbing.
9 GET A BONE SCAN. Know where you stand. Insurance companies typically won't pay for the $1000+ DXA bone density scan until men are 65 and women are 50. Doctors we contacted suggest that you might be covered under most insurance policies if you appear to hunch when you see your doctor, complain of aches and mention that your spouse or friends say you look shorter, which could indicate premature kyphosis, a grand-motherly forward slump
Mediplex Expert Group