What is it about?

Physical activity in childhood and adolescence is crucial for a healthy skeleton, as a strong skeleton prevents osteoporosis later in life. However, our recent study found that bone-strengthening physical activity decreases during adolescence. The least fit teenagers had the greatest decrease in bone-strengthening physical activity over three years.

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Why is it important?

A large proportion of bone mass is accumulated during childhood and adolescence. Therefore, bone-strengthening physical activity should be supported especially in the least fit children and adolescents, as low bone mass predisposes them to osteoporosis later in life.


This article presents novel findings on the development of device-assessed bone-strengthening physical activity during adolescence. While we were unable to establish a direct link between this bone-strengthening physical activity and bone health outcomes, such as bone mineral density, our study offers valuable insights for the prevention of osteoporosis. The findings are particularly significant as they shed light on a crucial period in human development when bone strength can be enhanced through physical activity, potentially minimising the risk of osteoporosis later in life.

Dr. Eero Haapala
University of Jyväskylä

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Trajectories of osteogenic physical activity in children and adolescents: a 3-year cohort study, Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, February 2024, Elsevier,
DOI: 10.1016/j.jsams.2024.02.005.
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