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  • building bone mass

    Hi doctors, hope none of you get corona god bless you all.

    I know that resistance training can strengthen your bones but can you actually build bone mass like building muscle mass ?
    if so how much bone mass can you potentially build ? and does it matter what you're doing specifically in your resistance training (specific movements like deadlift or squat) or does it not matter as long as you're training well?

  • #2
    Yes, you can build bone mass. The specific amount is highly variable based on a number of factors (sex, age, genetics, training, other medical conditions, etc.)

    It does matter what you do in training -- the primary factor being a requirement of high-intensity loading, regardless of exercise selection.
    IG / YT

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    • #3
      Thank you so much for the answer,you said medical conditions, does Arthiritis affect this ?

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      • #4
        Originally posted by erentacyildiz View Post
        Thank you so much for the answer,you said medical conditions, does Arthiritis affect this ?
        The amount of bone mineral density you can build is not affected by primary osteoarthritis, no.
        Barbell Medicine "With you from bench to bedside"
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        • #5
          Piggybacking off of this question:

          I have seen other people recommend high impact movements such as squat jumps for building bone mass, how much sense does this make?

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          • #6
            There are no magic exercises -- as with most of these questions, it depends on the degree of stimulus compared to the individual's existing level of adaptation.

            In other words, for a sedentary/inactive individual with osteopenia, there would likely be some degree of benefit from jump squats (although impossible to predict how much, given typical inter-individual variability), whereas jump squats are unlikely to increase my bone density at present.
            IG / YT

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            • #7
              Thank you for your reply Dr Baraki,

              I want to clarify my question a little: you stated that the primary requirement for building bone mass is high intensity loading, is high intensity impact also an important variable (how many sets and reps are being completed of exercises where there is a high impact and how large the impact is).

              I really just want to know what variables are most important to look at if I am programming for someone who wants to build bone mass. right now my understanding is that training to build bone mass is similar to training for muscle mass except there is a greater emphasis on absolute load and a lesser emphasis on ROM. Is this understanding wrong/incomplete?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by 4l3x View Post
                Thank you for your reply Dr Baraki,

                I want to clarify my question a little: you stated that the primary requirement for building bone mass is high intensity loading, is high intensity impact also an important variable (how many sets and reps are being completed of exercises where there is a high impact and how large the impact is).

                I really just want to know what variables are most important to look at if I am programming for someone who wants to build bone mass. right now my understanding is that training to build bone mass is similar to training for muscle mass except there is a greater emphasis on absolute load and a lesser emphasis on ROM. Is this understanding wrong/incomplete?
                Muscle mass and bone mass tend to track together across the lifespan. In other words, individuals with osteopenia / osteoporosis also tend to have sarcopenia as well.

                While loading is likely more important than ROM for bone mass, range of motion is quite important when it comes to muscle mass. So, I would not dichotomize this into one or the other.
                IG / YT

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                • #9
                  Thank you for answering my question Dr. Baraki, that's very interesting, I think I got lucky training a couple of people well without a complete understanding of everything at play.

                  I hope you and your family are all in good health

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