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n International SportMed Journal - A critical review of exercise training effects on bone mineral density (BMD) in early postmenopausal women : article review
Objectives : To review evidence of positive exercise effects on BMD in early postmenopausal women (0.5-8 years postmenopausal) by summarising existing studies in this area.
Data sources : MEDLINE search using the terms "exercise" AND "BMD" AND "osteoporosis", later than 1970, plus the bibliographies of the studies identified by the MEDLINE search.
Study selection : Nine studies were identified and included in this review. All the studies included a non-training control group, half of them were randomised.
Data extraction : Exercise effects on bone mineral density at the hip and the spine were qualitatively compared predominantly based on the type of exercise and study duration. A quantitative analysis was not possible due to the inhomogeneity of the studies.
Data synthesis : 5 out of 7 studies (6 out of 9 exercising subgroups) demonstrated significant positive exercise effects defined as BMD differences in the exercise versus control group at the lumbar spine, and 3 out of 6 at the proximal femur. Intervention periods of all studies showing no positive results were shorter than nine months. However, only 3 studies showed significant positive BMD changes in the exercise group alone. All of these studies used mixed exercise regimes using high impact exercises and resistance training.
Conclusion : The results suggest that in particular exercise programmes with high impact and resistance training lasting longer than a year help to maintain or even improve BMD at the lumbar spine and hip in early postmenopausal women.
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