The mechanostat theory (Frost et al., 1987) dictates that bone adaptation is a response system likened to a thermostat in which a set point, or minimum effective strain (MES), is determined by internal & external factors and therefore respond to loads above or below these MES points with either bone formation or resorption. Simply put, load the bone above its natural MES, and it will adapt the bone to support the new demand; conversely, unloading the bone (below its MES) and the BMD will decline to meet its new metabolic environment.Animal studies have provided information regarding mechanical loading for optimal bone formation: Expand
Theoretically, brief, unique, high impact exercise should induce bone formation. Research supporting this theory exists in premenopausal women, however physiologic factors (ie., hormonal, co-morbidities, aging) may prevent similar adaptions in older adults, and other factors (pain, restrictions with co-morbidities, fear, etc.) may prevent the safe or successful implementation of high impact programs in older adults.
Play the below audio to hear our trainer speak about the LIFTMOR trial.References
Bassey, E. J., & Ramsdale, S. J. (1994). Increase in femoral bone density in young women following high-impact exercise. Osteoporos Int, 4(2), 72-75.
Bassey, E. J., Rothwell, M. C., Littlewood, J. J., & Pye, D. W. (1998). Pre- and postmenopausal women have different bone mineral density responses to the same high-impact exercise. J Bone Miner Res, 13(12), 1805-1813.
Frost, H. M. (1987). The mechanostat: a proposed pathogenic mechanism of osteoporoses and the bone mass effects of mechanical and nonmechanical agents. Bone Miner, 2(2), 73-85.
Kato, T., Terashima, T., Yamashita, T., Hatanaka, Y., Honda, A., Umemura, Y. (2006). Effect of low- repetition jump training on bone mineral density in young women. J Appl Physiol, 100: 839-843.
Mosely, J.R., Lanyon, L.E. (1998) Strain rate as a controlling influence on adaptive modeling in response to dynamic loading of the ulna in growing male rats. Bone, 23: 313-318.
Rubin, C. T., & Lanyon, L. E. (1985). Regulation of bone mass by mechanical strain magnitude. Calcif Tissue Int, 37(4), 411-417.
Vainionpaa, A., Korpelainen, R., Leppaluoto, J., & Jamsa, T. (2005). Effects of high-impact exercise on bone mineral density: a randomized controlled trial in premenopausal women. Osteoporos Int, 16(2), 191-197.
Watson SL, Weeks BK, Weis LJ, Harding AT, Horan SA, Beck BR. High-Intensity Resistance and Impact Training Improves Bone Mineral Density and Physical Function in Postmenopausal Women With Osteopenia and Osteoporosis: The LIFTMOR Randomized Controlled Trial. J Bone Miner Res. 2018; 33(2):211-220. doi:10.1002/jbmr.3284
Winters-Stone, K. M., & Snow, C. M. (2006). Site-specific response of bone to exercise in premenopausal women. Bone, 39(6), 1203-1209.