Osteoporosis is a disease that results from too much bone loss, too little bone growth, or both. As a result, bones will become weak and may even break from a minor fall or, in serious cases, just from sneezing or bumping into furniture.
Osteoporosis most commonly affects the spinal vertebrae, hips, and wrists.
Millions of Americans, 57 million to be exact, have low bone density or osteoporosis. In fact, about one in two women and up to one in four men over the age of 50 will break a bone due to this disease. By 2020 half of all Americans over age 50 are expected to have developed low bone density/osteoporosis.
The good news is that osteoporosis can be reversed! One especially successful strategy in counteracting the effects of the disease is involvement in a well-planned Pilates program. Pilates by Val can design a regimen just for you.
All staff members at Pilates by Val have had extensive formal training for the safe instruction of exercises designed to alleviate and reverse the effects of osteoporosis.
Osteoporosis Reversal: Testimony from a current Pilates by Val client...
The dreaded disease osteoporosis has been dogging me for years. To tell the truth, I feared it more than any other sickness or disability. I was diagnosed with osteopenia in the year 2000. My calcium levels were low and my usual running activity was inhibited by the dark and cold Alaska winters. At the time, I refused to take any of the offered prescriptive drugs because I had researched the side effects and had rejected that solution immediately.
When we moved to Florida in 2003, the diagnosis of osteopenia followed me. Here I was able to soak up Florida sun, work on building up my calcium level, and walk and run, but irregularly with no real dedication.
In late 2010, my bone density scan registered osteoporosis in my hip. It was a devastating diagnosis, but still I refused medication because of the possible side effects. Thank you, Dr. Richard Stachler, for recognizing my determination and offering to think outside the box. He gave me two years to work on just maintaining the osteoporosis where it currently was. His prescription instructed me to jar and pound my bones into producing more calcium and improving density. “Wake up the dormant cells,” he advised me. “RUN… seriously run AND lift weights. If you commit to the work, I’ll give you two years. If your osteoporosis has not increased and you have maintained and stabilized, we will forego the drugs.”
I left Dr.Stachler’s office and drove straight to the Pilates by Val studio. “WE have a problem, Val, and I need you to fix it.” I’m not sure I even said please…I was a desperate woman. I promised in blood and in sweat I would follow her instructions and do exactly as she asked and ordered. Val pulled out all the stops, took my dilemma seriously, researched, studied, and developed a plan of action for me.
I began a four-day a week Pilates regimen and then, to my dismay, Val signed me up for a 5K race. Running was no longer a lark; it was an order and medical prescription. I have since hung many a medal on my wall and run the Double Bridge 15K in the two years of my physical commitment to maintaining and keeping osteoporosis at bay.
In January 2013, I had my first DEXA scan after starting the program Val had designed for me. I did not maintain my level of osteoporosis; I REVERSED it.
NO osteoporosis showed up in my scan. I was free and clear.
Needless to say, I was not shy about interrupting the Thursday evening mat class with much whooping and hollering in celebration of a job well done and a monstrous goal realized. I am indebted to Val more than I can ever express.