I hope all of you (in the US) had an enjoyable Labor Day weekend! I am sure you noticed that we did not post a Weekend Challenge that Saturday, but we’re continuing with our theme of preventing falls by improving balance, and this week’s exercise picks up right where we left off.

The Upper Body Strengthener targets your shoulders, arms, and core. Believe it or not, these muscle groups are just as crucial as those in the lower body for balance and fall prevention. I’ll explain.

Why: The core muscles are located in the center of your body, so they act as a “bridge” between your torso and legs. Every movement either starts in your core or passes through it, so the importance of these central muscle groups in fall prevention and coordination cannot be overemphasized.

A strong core enables you to twist, turn, and bend while keeping your balance, and in fact, a toned core helps you stand in one place without falling over.

Activities around the house involve your core as you reach overhead, bend over to pick things up or when you’re doing household chores such as sweeping the floor. These activities are much less likely to result in a fall if your core muscles are stable, flexible, and strong. In other words, the Upper Body Strengthener will make you less accident-prone.

Arms and shoulders are also important, and the Upper Body Strengthener works them as well. If you do lose your balance, having strong bones and muscles in your upper body helps you catch your fall. And because the action of muscle on bone increases bone density, your arms and shoulders will be better able to absorb the shock and resist fracture if you do fall.

And of course, all of these muscle groups work together to promote youthful posture, so you’ll appear more confident as you’re rejuvenating your bones.

How: Find a sturdy chair to get started.

  1. Put your hands on the seat of the chair, shoulder-width apart.
  2. Tighten your abs and straighten your body so there’s a straight line from your head to your feet.
  3. Slowly pull one knee forward and up toward your chest. Round your back a little, and imagine pulling your belly button in toward your spine.
  4. Press the foot back to the starting position and straighten out again.
  5. Repeat with the other knee.
  6. Continue to alternate one knee with the other until you’ve done 10 reps on each side or as many as you comfortably can.

Advanced Version

If you don’t find the above version challenging enough, you might prefer the advanced version. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Begin in a plank position on the floor, with a straight line from your shoulders to your wrists.
  2. Then proceed from #3 above.

Build Your Bones And Your Confidence

I’ve found that exercises like this one and those in the Densercise™ Epidensity Training System have made me feel much more confident. There’s a certain self-assurance you feel when you know you’re working toward younger, healthier bones and building strong muscles. And I love the youthful energy I get from doing “densercises”!

Exercise is a vital component to restoring bone health and preventing the bone loss associated with age. And there’s nothing like getting stronger and more coordinated to help you feel great about yourself.

I’d like to invite you to check out Densercise™, so you’ll regain your posture, strength, energy, and bone density!

Till next time,

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18 comments. Leave Yours Now →
  1. ROWENA January 29, 2015, 2:40 am

    I don’t know what my life would’ve been like without finding you Vivian
    You’ve changed my whole approach to life and im making positive and healthy choices on a daily basis ill let you know how my next dexa scan goes I feel stronger
    so im sure it will show improvement
    Rowena

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA January 29, 2015, 8:26 am

      Thank you so much, Rowena – but you need to thank yourself first and foremost! You are the one who decided to take control of your own bone health and apply what you learned in your research. Congratulations!

  2. Agnes Singh October 10, 2014, 10:26 am

    Hi Vivan, I need to know if I have to take the individual supplements you mentioned in your saves the bones book plus a multi vitamins also. I have a very good multi vitamin which has about 80% of the individual supplements with the almost exact mg and mcg in them. Should I take my multi vitamin and then add the ones that you recommend which are not in my multi vitamin; or should I only use the individual supplements you recommend and not use the multi vitamin that I have. I just began using the True Osteo as well (Advance Bone support).
    Please advice. Thank you so much for all the support you are giving to us. Hope to hear from you.

  3. Renata De Luca September 30, 2014, 4:00 pm

    I bought your book, a few years ago. I followed it for a while, and still do certain things, but I love yogurts and cheeses and you seem to say that milk leeches out calcium from the bones. Should I avoid eating yogurts and cheese?
    Thanks for your answer, Vivian.

  4. Liz September 18, 2014, 12:57 am

    I am battling on three fronts – hypothyroidism, osteoarthritis and osteopenia. Unfortunately the foods that are recommended for the thiird condition are frequently a big no no for the first. Meanwhile osteoarthritis continues apace. I am glad to receive your news bulletins, exercise and dietary advice.
    Supplements – cod liver oil, fish oil and calcium,; fish body oil; magnesium; selenium; B complex; Inflavestin; GoPo; AdCal.
    al; vitamin D3. Apple cider vinegar. Levothyroxin. Eccoxolac is my prescribed anti inflammatory , I

  5. Leslie (Ms. L. Carmel) September 15, 2014, 5:38 pm

    Good Afternoon Vivian And S O B Team,

    That Looks Like An Excellent Weekend Challenge Exercise.
    Thank You Very Much, In Advance, For Sharing It With Us.

    Take Good Care Of Yourselves, Stay Well, And Have A Wonderful Weekend!

    LOVE, LESLIE (MS. L. CARMEL)

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA September 16, 2014, 3:04 pm

      Isn’t it wonderful to discover more benefits from foods you already love? 😀

  6. Marlene Villar September 15, 2014, 1:30 am

    Good evening Vivian,
    I tried it this morning and it was very good. Thank you
    very much . Have a wonderful evening. Marlene

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA September 15, 2014, 8:36 am

      Great to hear, Marlene!

  7. Bernice September 14, 2014, 11:22 am

    Ouch!
    It was Labour Day in Canada too.
    A reference to North America (instead of US) might have been more apt.

  8. Pat Boyd September 14, 2014, 8:33 am

    Vivian, all of these exercises, I am doing in my yoga class. I am getting much stronger than I have been in years. Good to know, how much it’s helping my bones and muscles. Thank you for all your help, please don’t stop, we would be lost without you help.

  9. Caretha September 13, 2014, 3:00 pm

    Vivian,
    Thank you for the weekend challenge exercises.
    I would like to know if there are alterative exercises that are as beneficial and work the same muscles in a seated position for individuals that use a wheelchair?

    Thank you for your reply

  10. Suzy September 13, 2014, 1:51 pm

    Thank you, Vivian, for another great weekend challenge! And thank you for showing the proper form for this exercise. So often we see similar exercises where the model is shown looking “straight forward” — meaning her eye gaze would be parallel to the floor. This would be a great strain on the neck! But in your model, she is keeping her neck and spine IN LINE! Kudos! 🙂

  11. Louise Osgood September 13, 2014, 10:42 am

    Are you supportive of Christine’s view of posture? I feel somehow we connected through her…but I haven’t seen any reinforcement of her posture standards. What do you have to say? Louise

  12. Nancy-Jo Ugarte September 13, 2014, 10:08 am

    I think your recipe book is too expensive for many seniors who are on very limited SS incomes. Is there a possibility of purchasing an e book at a more moderate price?

  13. Patty September 12, 2014, 10:28 pm

    Fyi: you!since changing to more of an alkaline diet and exercising, my X rays show MORE space between the bones than they did 3 years ago! Thank you! Thank you!

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA September 13, 2014, 8:31 am

      Great news, Patty! Keep up the good work, and let us know how you like this week’s challenge! 🙂

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