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The Loop

Strong muscles = strong bones, study proves

July 22, 2015

Getting enough Vitamin D and calcium, either through diet or supplements, has long been one of the most effective ways to avoid the brittle-bone condition known as osteoporosis. This condition, a common problem for golfers in the hip and lower-back regions, can be so severe that even a hard cough might cause a fracture.

But now a study proves that one of the most effective ways to counter osteoporosis is through targeted strength training. The University of Missouri's department of nutrition and exercise physiology concluded that after conducting a six-month study of middle-aged men who had low bone mass. Those in the study that did 60-120 minutes per week of specific exercises such as jumping, deadlifts, squats, and shoulder presses "significantly" increased their bone density (Click here to view the study).

The takeaway for golfers is that hip-hinging and lower-back exercises that incorporate an external load are very important to bone health--especially when you consider the punishment those areas of the body endure during the golf swing. If you're just getting started with strength training, Golf Digest fitness advisor Ralph Simpson (@ralphsimpsonpt) suggests you first do these movements without any weight working on form. But then add weight and slowly increase it over months of time.

To see me demonstrate one exercise that will help improve bone density, click on the video below.

Ron Kaspriske is the fitness editor of Golf Digest.