Weekend Challenge: Plyometric Full-Body Exercise

I hope everyone had a wonderful New Year, and that you’re all as optimistic about 2017 as I am. It’s going to be a great year, and what better way to kick it off than with an energetic, bone-strengthening plyometric exercise?

“Plyometric” may be a new term for some of you, so we’re going to look at what it’s all about and how it applies to your bone health. And that’s not all – research has shed light on the mystery of the amazing impact plyometric exercises have on antioxidant levels and on decreasing disease risk.

So let’s jump right in!

Why:

Plyometric exercises are high-impact and involve large body movements. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines “plyometric” as “exercise involving repeated rapid stretching and contracting of muscles (as by jumping and rebounding) to increase muscle power.”

Muscle power and strength tend to decline with age, and that plays into the issue of bone loss. Strong muscles apply force on bone, maintaining and increasing density.

This time-honored, research-supported concept has been with us since it was first introduced by German surgeon Julius Wolff in the late 1800s. This is now known as Wolff’s Law, which states that bone responds to applied force from muscle and gravity (osteogenic loading) by increasing strength and density.

Plyometric exercise puts Wolff’s Law into action.

Today’s move takes this concept and targets the pelvis, knee joints, femora, tibia, fibula, and ankles, and it also improves shoulder mobility. To target these areas to promote bone growth, the Plyometric Full-Body Exercise works the following muscles.

  • The quadriceps, which is the four-part muscle on the front of your thigh. Because they span the area between the knee and hip joints, using these muscles is essential for improving knee pain and building bone in the femora (thigh bones).

    The glutes include the gluteus maximus and gluteus minimus, which make up your buttocks muscles. Strong glutes support your lower back, promote pelvic alignment, and build bone in the pelvis.

  • The core muscles include most of the muscles in the torso, particularly the deep muscles that lie directly against the vertebrae, sternum (breast bone), and pelvic bones. You use your core for just about every motion, and they are pivotal in maintaining balance.

  • The gastrocnemius is engaged in today’s exercise, helping to propel you up off the floor and land firmly. This is the calf muscle, and you can feel it working when you jump or stand on tiptoe.

  • Besides the gastrocnemius, there are many other muscles in the back of the lower legs, which stabilize and mobilize the ankle: the plantaris, soleus, tibialis posterior, and fibularis brevis (to name a few).

As you exercise these muscles and target the bones involved, you’ll not only build bone density through the principles of Wolff’s Law; you’ll also improve your bone health by increasing your antioxidant levels, as you’ll learn next.

Study: Exercise Boosts Antioxidant Levels

If you’ve read the Save Our Bones Program, then you know the importance of t antioxidants to maintain and rejuvenate bone through prevention of oxidative damage. The irony is that exercise increases cellular respiration, which in turn increases free radicals that cause oxidative damage.

Researchers explored this phenomenon in greater depth, and found that the free radicals produced during moderate exercise actually promote insulin sensitivity.1 This is great news for Type II diabetics.

But there’s more. The researchers also found that exercise stimulates an “adaptive response” from muscles. When stimulated by exercise, muscles set various metabolic pathways into motion that regulate antioxidant levels, thus balancing the effect of exercise-induced free radicals.2

They concluded that “moderate intensity cardiovascular exercise in conjunction with a [sic] eating a diet rich in foods high in antioxidants”2 is the best option for bones and overall health.

As its name implies, this exercise is good for the whole body! So let’s look at how to do it.

How:

If you are uncertain of keeping your balance while jumping, it would be prudent to try this exercise for the first time near a bed.

  1. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and your arms down at your sides.
  2. Bend your knees and your elbows and go into a squat.
  3. Jump up off the floor, bringing your hands up over your head (elbows still bent) and, while airborne, bring one leg forward and one back behind you.
  4. When you land, go down into a lunge, touching the knee of your back leg to the floor. Bring your arms down at the same time, elbows slightly bent.
  5. Without stopping, launch back up into the air and switch feet, bringing your arms up once again. When you come down, repeat the lunge move.
  6. Continue jumping and landing 8 to 10 times, as your fitness level allows.

Antioxidants And Exercise Go Hand-In-Hand

Like the study mentioned earlier shows, eating antioxidant-rich foods and exercising are both important for reaching optimal antioxidant levels, and this combination is essential for rejuvenating bone and reversing bone loss.

In fact, what you eat before and after your workouts makes a big difference in your body’s ability to balance the free radicals produced by exercise. That’s why the Densercise™ Epidensity Training System includes a bonus Eating Guide, which shows you exactly what foods to eat before and after exercising, to replenish your antioxidant levels and build strong bones and muscles.

With Densercise™, you never have to worry about “stressing” your body with too much exercise, since each exercise sessions lasts 15 minutes. While challenging, Densercise™ avoids exhaustive workouts and instead focuses on targeted moves that build bone in fracture-prone areas. And the Eating Guide shows you how to give your body exactly what it needs to get the most out of your exercise routine.

Take Exercising For Your Bones to the Next Level!

Learn the 52 exercise moves that jumpstart bone-building – all backed by the latest in epigenetics research.

Learn More Now →

Enjoy the weekend!

References:

1Ristow, Michael, et al. “Antioxidants prevent health-promoting effects of physical exercise in humans.” PNAS. 106. 21. (2009): 8665-8670. Web. January 5, 2017. http://www.pnas.org/content/106/21/8665.long

2Kravitz, Len, PhD. “Is Exercise the Best Antioxidant Supplement?” PDF. https://www.unm.edu/~lkravitz/Article%20folder/Antioxidants.pdf

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17 comments. Leave Yours Now →
  1. Priscilla January 8, 2017, 2:10 pm

    Definitely not good to jump if you’ve had hip or knee replacements. I was a professional dancer and dance teacher for 40 years, now 69 years old, and have two hip implants. I have noticed that many of your exercises are not particularly good for people who haven’t worked with a professional to make sure they are engaging there core properly while working their bodies or have joint replacements. That’s how many injuries can happen, especially as we get older. In case you’re wondering—My surgeries were due to 40 years of overuse and having Hyper-mobility syndrome.

    • Anna January 8, 2017, 6:07 pm

      Priscilla: I agree with your comments. I am a 61 year old former modern dancer with a hip replacement (over use and avascular necrosis) and a family history of osteoporosis. Luckily, I show no signs or symptoms yet, and I appreciate the tips and philosophy presented by SaveOurBones so that I can hopefully avoid this terrible disease. I do find some of the exercises involve high impact, inappropriate for many, including those of us with joint replacements. I currently teach and practice Qigong which gives me the advantage of weight-bearing movements without the harsh impact. Good Luck to Us All!

  2. Helen Rice January 8, 2017, 11:38 am

    Please comment on when jumping is safe!
    For example for someone who has osteoporosis with spinal and hip issues!

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA January 8, 2017, 8:10 pm

      Hi Helen,

      Whether or not jumping is safe definitely depends on the individual. Your physical therapist or doctor can help you decide if jumping is safe for you.

  3. Susan Colvin January 8, 2017, 10:24 am

    This exercise looks hard to do but at 63 I’m willing to try it. My life has changed dramatically since I became a saver and my last bone test showed improvement. Still I struggle with eating right. Or rather cutting out cheese seems practically impossible. Thanks for your help.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA January 8, 2017, 8:08 pm

      Hang in there, Susan! This is such a supportive community; I’m so glad you’re participating. Remember, acidifying foods like cheese do not have to be cut out entirely; just enjoy cheese as part of your 20% of acidifying foods! 🙂

  4. Abigail Taylor January 7, 2017, 8:51 pm

    Hello V, I am thankful to God for placing you in our lives. Yes, I have learnt a lot, and I always make sure I read all your mail. One problem I have is, that I do not live in the U.S, so I cannot get the Calcium you spoke about. Since I learnt about the Calcium you spoke about, I stopped taking Bone meal, or Calcium Citrate for a very long time now. I am 76 with no health issues, but I would like to take care of my bones, besides exercising, and eating healthy. Do you have any suggestion for me?
    I also wish you a Happy New Year, asking the Lord’s blessings on you and your family members as He desires for you. Thank you again for your friendship, your faithfulness and dedication to which ministry I believe God has called you to. God bless you always. Love and hugs.

  5. Mera January 7, 2017, 6:39 pm

    When is jumping safe. I’m 60 yr old. Spinal degeneration and a flat disk. I’m doing some jumps. I’d love to hear your wisdom on that.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA January 8, 2017, 6:44 pm

      Hi Mera,

      How safe jumping is definitely varies from individual to individual. Please check with your doctor if you have any doubts as to whether or not you should jump. In the meantime, keep doing what you’re comfortable with!

  6. Nary January 7, 2017, 12:55 pm

    I would like to order the calcium supplement that you recommended but do not have the information. I would also like some information about the product itself. Could you please send it to me. Thank you for all your great information and exercises.

  7. Sandra nava January 7, 2017, 11:49 am

    I just learned that there is calcium supplement that you recommend please let me know which one it is where to order it and how I can get a coupon. Love the work that you do
    Sandy

  8. Helen January 7, 2017, 11:20 am

    Vivian, I appreciate your week-end exercises. Sorry I missed the message about calcium supplement. Can you repeat it. The only thing I’m taking is citracal and 2000 mg vitamin D daily.

    • Deborah January 13, 2017, 8:13 am

      True Osteo is an organic calcium. Stay away from your calcium made from rocks!

  9. Bonnie January 7, 2017, 9:31 am

    Thanks for all you do! I have been a faithful follower for a year now. I was diagnosed with early stage BC in August, had a lumpectomy in October and just started radiation. I was put on Tamoxifen rather than an AI because I refused to take Prolia injections. My research tells me that is bad news too along with all the rest. I am upset that my oncologist won’t let me take what appears to be the best drug to prevent recurrence in post menopausal women. I am due for a repeat dexa the end of the month and hoping with all I have done in the past year there will be improvement enough that he will believe I can do it and still take the AI. I can’t find any info or any other women who have attempted to take AI without Prolia, and how they did. My only example was my dental hygienist who has been on AI for two years and had two fractures from Fosimax! So now she is starting Prolia!! Yee gads!! Any comments?

    • Deborah January 13, 2017, 8:15 am

      Please research True Osteo organic calcium God Bless. !

  10. Carla January 7, 2017, 8:45 am

    Thanks, Vivian! I look forward to my Saturday exercises.
    I am trying to reorder the calcium supplement you recommended but has lost the name and link. Do you still offer a coupon? With gratitude, carla

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA January 7, 2017, 9:09 am

      It’s great to hear that you look forward to the Weekend Challenges! I do, too. 🙂 As far as ordering calcium goes, please check your inbox for a message from our Customer Support team.

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