Jumping, lifting weights may reverse bone loss: study

Columbia, MO – Middle-aged men may improve bone density by performing weight-lifting and jumping exercises, according to a study from the University of Missouri-Columbia.

As part of the study, men participated in 12 months of resistance training or jump training. Each of the men (average age 44 years old) had below-normal bone levels in the hip or spine.

Researchers said bone density of the whole body and lumbar spine “significantly increased” in the men after six months of either training program. The increases held steady after 12 months. However, for hip bone density, increases were seen only among those who performed weight-lifting exercises.

The findings could help millions of men who suffer from low bone mass and are at risk for developing osteoporosis, researchers said.

“Our study is the first to show that exercise-based interventions work to increase bone density in middle-aged men with low bone mass who are otherwise healthy,” lead author Pam Hinton, of the University of Missouri Department of Nutrition and Exercise Physiology, said in a press release. “These exercises could be prescribed to reverse bone loss associated with aging.”

The study was published online June 16 in the journal Bone.