Monday, September 17, 2012

Exercises and Bracing for Fracture Prevention and Pain Relief

I have had the great pleasure of meeting two excellent therapists who specialize in exercise and postural therapy for patients with osteoporosis, Denise Pontbriand, the owner of Core Fitness, Wellness & Exercise, in Sturbridge, MA, and Renee King, PT of OsteoporosisPT in Auburn, MA.

Physical activity of all types will lower your risk of fracture. Many studies have shown that weight bearing exercise can help improve bone strength by increasing bone mineral density. Exercise also helps to improve muscle strength, balance, and coordination, all of which are important for reducing falls (the number one cause of fractures).

Engaging in some form of exercise program is extremely important for bone health. Unfortunately, it can also be risky especially if a person's bone density and bone quality are extremely low or if they have already sustained a fracture. If this is the case, it is wise to work with an expert. Denise and Renee are experts, full of energy and ready to help.

Denise has her Associate of Science degree in Physical Therapy. She is a Certified Senior Strength Trainer and a Certified Exercise Specialist using the "Meeks Method" for osteoporosis management. I will be giving a talk on osteoporosis at her Core Fitness, Wellness & Exercise center on September 27 at 7 pm. You can call her office at 508-344-2567 for more info and to sign up to attend.

Renee King is a physical therapist, osteoporosis exercise specialist (also using the Meeks Method), and Certified Spinomed Orthosis fitter. If you have sustained a compression fracture, the Spinomed brace can help you increase back strength and reduce pain. When used in conjunction with postural and exercise therapy, these braces actually help activate and strengthen specific spinal musculature. For this reason, using these braces, even if you haven't sustained a vertebral compression fracture but are at high risk, can be extremely useful. When a person sustains a compression fracture, the muscles in the back often tighten and eventually weaken. This sets the stage for more fractures especially in contiguous vertebrae. By using a Spinomed orthosis and engaging in a specific spine strengthening routine, chronic pain can be alleviated and the risk of further fractures reduced.
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