Physical exercise is considered an effective means to help prevent osteoporosis and to increase bone strength in osteoporotic individuals. Breast cancer treatments, medications and surgery have a considerable impact on bone health, and patients may experience a loss of ovarian function, or if premenopausal before cancer treatment, may go through menopause earlier. The research supports that a combined aerobic and resistance training improves bone health in female cancer survivors. The authors in the 2019 article “The Effectiveness of Physical Exercise on Bone Density in Osteoporotic Patients” reported the most appropriate features of an exercise program for increasing bone density in osteoporotic patients. The first type of exercise that is effective for individuals with osteoporosis is weight-bearing aerobic exercises which include walking, stair climbing, and Tai Chi. The second type of exercise is strength and resistance exercises which can be performed with weights/resistive bands or swimming. Multicomponent exercises were also reviewed and deemed appropriate for the patient population. Multicomponent exercises consist of a combination of different methods including aerobics, strengthening, balance, dancing and progressive resistance. For the multicomponent exercise to be effective, the exercise must contain a proportion of strength and resistance training. Determining an appropriate and safe exercise program that helps to build strength, improve balance and posture and maintain bone mass is important to help minimize the risk of falling and fracture.
Benedetti MG, Furlini G, Zati A, & Letizia Mauro G. (2018). The Effectiveness of Physical Exercise on Bone Density in Osteoporotic Patients. Biomed Res Int.
Daly, RM., Dalla Via, J., Duckham, RL., Fraser, SF., Helge, EW. (2019). Exercise for the prevention of osteoporosis in postmenopausal women: an evidence-based guide to the optimal prescription. Braz J Phys Ther, 2019 Mar – Apr;23(2):170-180.