Yoga Helps Prevent Osteoporosis: Key Points to Optimize Bone Health

By
Lillah Schwartz, C-IAYT, E-RYT 500
man practicing warrior 1 at the wall

Reverse Osteoporosis—A Yoga Teacher’s Firsthand Account

By the time we get to our 50’s, most women are thinking about their bone density, or at least starting to. Certainly, yoga can help prevent osteoporosis. I’ve been practicing yoga since I was in my 20s, which is why I was shocked at the age of 59 when I received a diagnosis of osteoporosis. “Really? How did that happen?” Even though my diet and lifestyle did not include any risk factors, the focus of my yoga practice was not helping.

Yoga for Osteoporosis: #2 Way to Reduce the Risk of Vertebral Fractures: Strengthening The Trabecular Network

Also known as ‘spongy bone,’ the trabecular network makes up the inner part of the bone, surrounded by a thin outer rim of outer cortical bone (see figure). Trabecular bone has a three-dimensional honeycomb-... Read more

Yoga for Osteoporosis: #3 Way to Reduce the Risk of Vertebral Fragility Fractures: Intersegmental Stability & Neuromuscular Coordination

The spine is essentially a set of loosely assembled building blocks stacked on top of each other. What keeps the spine stable and able to move efficiently are the ligaments, fascia and muscles around the spine... Read more

Yoga for Osteoporosis: #4 Way to Reduce the Risk of Vertebral Fragility Fractures: Intervertebral Disc Integrity

Studies have shown that the weight-bearing capacity of the vertebrae, and therefore their ability to withstand loading, is linked to the integrity of the intervertebral discs . The vertebral discs act as shock... Read more

Editor's Picks

Yoga crow pose

Do Your Bones Affect Your Mood? The Surprising Bone-Brain Link

Does our skeleton—and bones—play a role for our health and wellbeing beyond ‘just’ holding up our body, as previously assumed? Indeed, research now indicates that hormones produced as part of building bone... Read more
yoga for healthy aging

Yoga for Healthy Aging: Enhance Agility to Prevent Fractures

Agility in yoga is the ability to move easily through a series of asana positions while you stay balanced and in control. Some everyday situations that require agility are getting in and out of a car (... Read more
yoga for osteoporosis

Harvard Women's Health: Frequent Yoga Practice May Curb the Effects of Osteoporosis

Anyone suffering from osteoporotic bone loss can attest to how fear of falling and persistent bone fractures can undermine health, happiness and vitality. Harvard Women's Health Watch recently reported on a... Read more

Strength Building: How Long to Hold Poses

In the past, I have given some guidelines on how to use yoga poses to increase or maintain the strength of your both your bones and muscles. Based on some new information I have learned, I’d like to revisit my... Read more
yoga for osteoporosis - New York Times

Study Indicates Yoga Can Prevent Osteoporosis-Related Bone Loss

Osteoporosis is a tremendous health concern for women over 50, causing more than 700,000 spinal fractures and more than 300,000 hip fractures each year in the United States alone. It is well known that weight-... Read more
An older woman in a yoga class in Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana) practicing yoga for osteoporosis

New Research Casts Doubt on Benefits of Osteoporosis Drugs

Are millions of women putting up with the undesirable side effects of osteoporosis drugs and not getting the hip fracture-preventing benefits that they are hoping for? And, do efforts to improve balance and... Read more
longevity

4 Surprising Facts about Longevity

Want to know the secret to longevity? Psychology matters at least as much as biology. Have you ever noticed that in spite of the media blitz urging you to eat veggies and pump weights, some of the most health-... Read more