Thera-Band Exercise Reduces Falls and Improves Quality of Life in Women with Osteoporosis, Says Thera-Band Academy

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Persons with osteoporosis are at higher risk of fracture after a fall. It’s well-known that exercise is an important aspect of managing osteoporosis, yet there are few studies evaluating the effects of balance exercises on actually preventing falls in women with osteoporosis. Researchers in Brazil investigated the effects of a year-long balance training program on quality of life, balance, and falls in older women with osteoporosis.

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After 12 months, the exercise group significantly improved in balance and their quality of life scores compared to the control group, as well as significantly reduced their fall rates.

Persons with osteoporosis are at higher risk of fracture after a fall. It’s well-known that exercise is an important aspect of managing osteoporosis, yet there are few studies evaluating the effects of balance exercises on actually preventing falls in women with osteoporosis. The Academy Blog recently featured a study showing that elastic resistance training can reduce the risk factors associated with falls, but did not examine actual fall rates.

Researchers in Brazil investigated the effects of a year-long balance training program on quality of life, balance, and falls in older women with osteoporosis. The women were randomly assigned to an exercise group or control group. Those in the exercise group performed a balance training program 1 hour per week, supplemented with home exercises for 12 months.

The program consisted of 15 minutes of warm-up and stretching exercises, 15 minutes of walking, and 30 minutes of dynamic and static balance training exercises. The same exercises were repeated at home 3 times a week for 30 minutes. The researchers used a previously published exercise protocol that showed a significant decrease in falls in Japanese older adults. The exercises in the group and at home included moderate resistance training with dumbbells and Thera-Band exercise bands.

After 12 months, the exercise group significantly improved in balance and their quality of life scores compared to the control group, as well as significantly reduced their fall rates (50% reduction in exercise group compared to 26% reduction in control group). In conclusion, a 12-month exercise program including Thera-Band elastic resistance can significantly decrease falls and improve quality of life in older women with osteoporosis.

Visit the Thera-Band Academy Osteoporosis Resource Center here

About the Thera-Band Academy
The Thera-Band® Academy was formed to scientifically document the benefits of resistance exercise and pain relief, guide the company in its development of new product and exercise programs, and to promote therapeutic exercise and pain management through professional and consumer education. The Academy web site is a unique resource that connects healthcare professionals and consumers to the ever growing body of knowledge on exercise. Registration is free and provides access to the largest database of rehab exercises, protocols, research and education in the world.

About Performance Health
Performance Health is a leading designer, manufacturer and marketer of a broad portfolio of products for the therapy, rehabilitation, massage, wellness and consumer retail markets. Maker of market-leading Thera-Band®, Biofreeze® and Perform® products, Performance Health provides evidence-based protocols, education, turn-key dispensing and pain management solutions.

REFERENCE: Madureira MM, et al. A 12-month randomized controlled trial of balance training in elderly women with osteoporosis: improvement of quality of life. Maturitas. 2010 Jun;66(2):206-11. Epub 2010 Apr 14.

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