Weight vest Spinal Osteopenia or Osteoporosis.. One of the things we know is that our osteoblasts (bone building cells) respond to increase load on our bones. This is the whole reason why those with Osteopenia or Osteoporosis are advised to start a 'weight bearing exercise program' as soon as possible.
For those with spinal Osteopenia or Osteoporosis this can be a challenge since they are also advised not to bend forward from the waist since in coming out from this position vertebral fractures often occur. See: Exercise warnings
So how to you add load to your spine without bending forward?
One of the easiest ways is to use a weight vest. A well fitted vest adds weight when you stand or walk. In fact if you have the right vest you can slip it on in the morning and wear it for as long as you like.
This has advantages:
BUT the one thing you want to be careful about is how heavy each weight is for the vest you buy. Some vests made for power lifters increase weights 1 lb at a time. Since you want to keep your weights 'balanced' that means you start at 2 pounds. A single increase will bring you to 4 pounds and at your next increase you are up to 6 pounds of weight! That is enough to cause someone over the age of 45 to tip or fall if they turn an ankle, step on uneven ground etc. See: Balance and Co-ordination exercises for those over age 50.
There are also some sport vests that use half pound weights. They should give you 4-5 weeks for increasing weights before you reach the 'tipping point'. (I bought one of these some years back but found that I reached my 'safe limit' too fast. This is one reason I have not advocated weight vests. They tend to be expensive and if you reach your top safety weight in a few weeks.....well, that is expensive. )
The manufacturer of a NEW weight vest, Hyper Vest Pro sent me a sample a few years ago. Note the company sells 2 kinds of weight vest, You want HYPER VEST PRO with 2 ounce weights.To see this item,
Click on the site's SHOP button HyperVest Pro
HyperVest Pro has many small pockets. I was wondering how ithe vest would feel. After wearing it for a week or so I thought this vest might be marketed to the 'fitness crowd' but it could be useful for those of us looking to increase our spinal bone density.
Why? Well, if you begin with 2 ounces (2 weights)on each side of the vest for one week (I hardly noticed any increase in weight but we know our osteoblasts respond to any increase in stress).
Wear the vest for an hour a day. Then, the next week add another hour....and next week wear it for 3 hours. Then for 4, 5 hours and finally all day. (You can wear this under a blouse or shirt without 'bulking'- though I often let it show and wear it over my clothes.)
Next add another set - 2 more weights (Be sure to keep weights balanced, left & right and front & back.) Go back to wearing the vest for a 1 hour. Then slowly increase the amount of time over the next few weeks. Add more weight and repeat. Here is a vest that can “increase weight and resistance' for months without reaching the point at which there might be a danger to your balance.(Getting too top heavy).
Click on the SHOP button at the top of the page. Hypervest Pro is on the 3rd (last) page. (NOTE: You do NOT want their other vests eg, Hypervest FIT, Hypervest SXY or Hypervest COL. (These use heavier weights.) Keep going until you reach: HyperWear.com – PRO Weight Vest
I know that weight vests are not cheap. That is why I think it is important to find one that you can use for a long time. And what I have done is after I have used the vest for several months, increasing the weight slowly over that time, I put it away for about a year. That allows my bones to get used to having no or little stress on them. Then I take out the HyperVest and start all over.
HyperVest Pro with its 2 ounce weights is useful for a longer period of time than sport vests that use 1/2 pound or 1 lb weights. And when I think about it, I realize that I spend more supplements in a single year! But the hypervest can be used again and again for years....as long as I stop using it for a 8 - 12 months so my body gets used to no weight once again.
When you click on the company link, look for SHOP (weight vests are at the top of the SHOP drop down menu. Be sure to choose the PRO vest. The others use much heavier weights.) HyperWear.com