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Could the Menopause be affecting your bones?

by | Aug 1, 2021 | Articles, Pilates for Menopause

Menopause is inevitable for a woman and even in this modern age menopause is something we stoically accept and rarely discuss. I have found myself suffering temperature tantrums, moody moments and memory glitches so to be honest if I wasn’t a Physiotherapist teaching Pilates my bones would be the least of my worries!

Menopause and bone density

It is true that many women will experience only mild symptoms and ‘sail through the menopause’ without ever stepping foot in the Doctors surgery. However, we cannot escape the effects of our falling levels of oestrogen which can cause us to lose up to 20% of the bone mineral density (BMD) in the first 5–7 years after the menopause. Bone density is one of the factors which affect your bone strength overall and increase the risk of a fracture occurring; most commonly in the hip, wrist and vertebra (spine).

So although the risk of osteoporosis and fractures is said to be ‘relatively low’ until you are much older. The risk is actually increased over the age of 65 which doesn’t seem that far away for me now. Dig a bit deeper and more often than not the first time women get a diagnosis of osteopenia or osteoporosis is after they have suffered a fracture! This is a bit late if you ask me.

There is an increased risk of osteoporosis if:

  • experience an early menopause.
  • have hormone related conditions.
  • take certain medications known to affect bone, or
  • have a family history of osteoporosis.

None of these are under our control but all can have consequences for our bones.

But is it serious?

Osteoporosis is a major drain on the health economy and contributes to significant levels of disability and even premature death. According to guidance issued by the Royal Osteoporosis Society MORE not less exercise is important in the prevention and management of osteoporosis.

How can we treat osteoporosis?

My philosophy is that ‘prevention is better than cure!’ This philosophy has driven me to explore the role of exercise and specifically what Pilates can do to protect my bones. The benefits of exercise are undisputed; maintaining bone mass, improving muscle strength and flexibility. In addition balance focussed exercises reduce the risk of falling and thus fracture

Pilates for bones!

A recent study in 2015 by Angin et al showed that people who participated in Pilates saw an increase in their BMD, as well as improvements in their physical performance and their quality of life.

I have developed my  Menopause Pilates programme in accordance with the latest evidence and guidance from the Royal Osteoporosis Society. If you want to know more about Pilates for Bones checkout my article on Pilates for bone health

Act now!

Menopause is a time of change, so act now to make some time for yourself and make some changes. To adopt a healthier, bone friendly lifestyle join me online for you first class FREE! Find out more at www.precizion.co.uk

Hear me chat all about bones and menopause in this Precizion Podcast or watch the recording on Youtube 

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Pilates for Menopause for Massage Therapists and Manual Therapists  - NAT Diploma Course with Precizion 10 CEUs

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Interested to learn Pilates or Yoga?

Join Precizion for regular online Pilates and Yoga classes.  All led by Phillipa Butler, a Chartered Physiotherapist, Clinical Pilates and Women’s Health Expert. One-on-one consultations also available.

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