Hey, everyone! Sorry! I didn’t mean to throw a monkey wrench into the machinery with my earlier post. I just found it a fascinating statement, and I’m looking forward to hearing the statistics about what types of the population don’t improve. Like is it people with x-kind of metabolism, or x-related childhood illnesses, or x-age range or whatever.
Do not take the earlier entry as a gloom and doom prediction that you might be in the group that doesn’t improve. But even if you are — it doesn’t matter! Why not? Let me say this loud and clear: as far as exercise and osteoporosis goes, it is not just about the DEXA numbers. We fall into the trap of making it about the numbers because our doctors make it about the numbers. (Boy, do they make it about the numbers! And scare the mess out of us while doing it.)
But DEXA numbers do not adequately reflect one’s likelihood of fracture. People with greater BMD often fracture. People with even lower BMD than mine frequently remain fracture free the duration of their lives. Because quantity does not reflect quality.
What I failed to mention in the earlier post was Dr. Fishman’s comment to Betsy (or whomever ask the question in the thread about what level of yoga pose they should be doing)– Dr. Fishman said there is as of yet no good way to measure bone quality (a much more important measure in terms of predicting fracture risk). He said he believes we’re getting closer to having such a test (Hallelujah). (To put it in context, he said this to encourage people to err on the side of caution when choosing which level of pose use, particularly when forward spinal flexion was involved.)
As you move forward with your exercise programs, the thing all of you should hold in your hearts is the Sinaki study. If you’ll remember, the participants’ bone density did not significantly improve in any way, but their fracture rate was reduced by 300%. And that is what it is all about. Remaining fracture free. Our “skinny” bones in and of themselves aren’t the problem. It’s the fracture that can come with the “skinny” bones — causing nerve entrapment, compression of visceral organs, or reduction in mobility and/or quality of life — that is the problem.
If exercise reduces fracture risk (by improving coordination and balance and yes — I’ll say it — improving bone quality), that is the golden ring.
So do not get disheartened. And do not fall into the trap of measuring the efficacy of your exercise program by whether or not your DEXA scores improve by “x” amount. They may not. Granted, if your scores decline significantly (-3% or more), then maybe it’s time to move to plan B. But if your scores remain the same and you remain fracture free — that is a win. Let yourself have that.
Do you guys watch Friday Night Lights? I. Love. That. Show.The coach has this saying, and I think it’s appropriate here: Clear eyes, full hearts, can’t lose. Let’s keep our eyes clear and on the prize (a happy, healthy life); let’s keep our hearts full (of faith and hope that we can have such a life); and let’s move forward with the certainty that if we remain true to our path, we can’t lose.
Next week, I’ll be in the country (where there is more floor space and fewer dust bunnies) and I’ll try to post more videos. Until then, keep doing your yoga (or weight lifting or tai chi or swing dancing.) I’m four for five this week — and that’s with traveling to Boston (again) and NH.
Did my yoga tonight in the hotel room, where there was a full-length mirror. Somewhat distracting (when did that bit of cellulite get there?) (who is that lady?) (I have GOT to get a hair cut.)(Ugh, I look like my mother!), but in the end, I found it extremely helpful for self-correcting my form. I forgot to pack all my props (the yoga brick/block and strap and mat), and the carpet was a bit slippery, so I ended up using the wall a lot (to anchor my feet) and doing the twisting seated poses in a chair.
Really terrific yoga session. One of those that starts out as drudgery and ends up in semi-elation. Not having the props made me realize just how much stronger (and more limber) I am. You guys? I think my left hip is finally waking up! I was quite proud of myself