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"Sport Medicine Journal" No.17 - 2009

The effect of a 12-week low-impact exercise program for elderly people with early parkinson’s disease in bone mineral density

Lazaridis S. , Kitsios A. , Ioannidis T. , Zaggelidis G.
Department of Physical Education & Sports Science, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of an intervention exercise program for persons with Parkinson’s disease on bone mineral density. 14 elderly Parkinson Disease (PD) patients and 14 with no problem but serving as control group took part in the study. Measurements including bone mineral density (g/cm²) assessment with DEXA absorptiometry of the hip and lumbar spine were tested before and after a 12-week physical low-impact program. Treatment provided by community trainers consisted of conscious movement control and low-impact resistance training 3 times a week. The study revealed that patients had significantly higher levels of bone density in their femor bone and lumbar spine after it compared to baseline values. The same trend was not found for the case of control group. The results support application and development of the treatment concept and highlight that physical activity at its simple status can improve function in Parkinson’s disease patients. Progressive low-impact exercise is a potentially effective method of increasing BMD in PD elderly patients. If sustained, the increases in BMD may reduce the risk of osteoporotic fracture.

Key words:

Parkinson’s disease, bone mass, elderly, physical activity

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