Cyclists are at Higher than Normal Risk!

By coincidence a few days after John Eden fell off his bike and broke his hip, I saw an article in a cycling magazine on this very topic. It pointed out that the chances are, at some point, we will take a fall or be involved in a crash. This applies to all cyclists, whether we ride solo, with friends, in groups, or compete in events such as audax, sportifs or races.

The article resulted from new research published in The Lancet Diabetes & Endocrinology, which suggested osteoporosis-related hip fractures will double worldwide by 2050 due to an increase in the aging population and other factors, such as living a sedentary lifestyle, and insufficient calcium and vitamin D intake.

Note that it refers to “other factors” – one of these, is that in 2012 there was an extensive review of 31 studies on the subject of cycling and osteoporosis. The findings revealed that adult road cyclists who train regularly have a significantly low bone mineral density in key regions. This was found to be true when comparing the cyclists to control populations of both athletes in other sports as well as non-athletes. Areas of the lumbar spine, pelvic and hip regions, and femoral neck were all key areas found to have lower values in road cyclists than the controls. And just to remind you where this area is!

This study resulted in several informed articles in cycling magazines, and of more importance, what cyclists can – and should – do to reduce the risk of osteoporosis. The answer is two fold.
1. Strength training and putting impact forces on your bones is the number one thing you can do to promote bone health and bone density.
And 2. As previously mentioned, ensure that your diet includes sufficient calcium and vitamin D intake.

Below I have provided a couple of such articles. The first is from a Ladies cycling website (It used to be thought that osteoporosis was more prevalent with ladies, but the latest data now suggests men are at higher risk.) And the second, a more detailed article for serious and competitive cyclists.

This article proves a brief overview of why cycling is bad for bone health, and what can be done to strengthen our bones – diet and appropriate exercise.

For a very comprehensive article on this subject, from one of the leading coaching authorities, you won’t find anything better.

If you have never done any resistance training, one of the best exercises to get started with is body weight squats.

The Squat is known as the King of Exercises
To get the full benefit from Squats you need to perform the exercise correctly. And once you have got that right, there are a number of variations as shown in this tutorial –