4 Best Bone Building Exercises: Make Your Bones Stronger

bone building exercises

Everyone knows that regular exercise is vital at every age. But did you know that exercise can improve bone health and slow the development of osteoporosis? And what are the best bone building exercises?

Exercise improves your bone health and increases muscle strength, balance, and coordination. With regular exercise, you can reduce the chance of missteps and falls that can lead to fractures. In this article, we cover some bone building exercises that make you healthy.

The Best Bone Building Exercises

There are two forms of exercises that are particularly important for building bone density: weight-bearing exercises and muscle-strengthening exercises.

Weight-bearing exercises involve forcing your muscles to work against gravity. These exercises include aerobic activities such as walking, jogging, hiking, playing tennis, climbing stairs, and dancing. 

Other aerobic exercises such as cycling and swimming could also help to build strong muscles and bones and offer excellent cardiovascular benefits. 

Bone building exercises like lifting weights can also help strengthen your muscles and bones.

Weight-bearing Exercises

Weight-bearing exercises can be low-impact or high-impact.

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High-impact weight-bearing exercises help to build bones and make them stronger. However, if you suffer from osteopenia or osteoporosis, it is best to avoid high-impact exercises as the increased weight exerted on the bones and joints may lead to a fracture. [1]

Some of the best high-impact weight-bearing exercises are:

  • Jumping Rope
  • Dancing
  • Hiking
  • Running
  • Jogging
  • Stair climbing

Walking, running, swimming, and jogging are particularly beneficial for strengthening the leg bones that support your body weight. As you perform these activities, the force of the feet against the ground helps build bone strength.. 

Jogging and running are high impact exercises. Walking is considered moderate impact. 

Low-impact weight-bearing exercises help maintain the strength of your bones. These are considered a safer alternative for people who cannot perform high-impact exercises due to the risk of fractures. 

Some of the best low-impact weight-bearing exercises are:

  • Using stair-step machines
  • Fast walking on a treadmill or in a park
  • Using elliptical training machines
  • Low-impact aerobics

Muscle-Strengthening Exercises

Muscle strengthening exercises are also called resistance exercises. These exercises involve moving your body and weight against gravity. [2] [3]

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Some of the best muscle strengthening exercises include:

  • Using weight machines
  • Lifting weights
  • Lifting your own body weight
  • Using elastic exercise bands
  • Functional movements like standing and rising up on the toes

Weight lifting or weight training is great for building strong muscles and bones. These exercises involve working out the non-weight-bearing bones in the arms. [4]

People are usually advised to start a weight training program using lighter weights and a higher number of repetitions. Research studies have shown that weight training could slow down bone loss and increase bone mineral density helping to protect all people, especially menopausal women, against osteopenia and osteoporosis. [5] [6]


There are a few Yoga poses recommended to improve bone health.  Yoga poses enhance your balance and muscle coordination. [7]

One of the unique benefits of yoga is these exercises also enhance your self-awareness thereby keeping you more alert. Yoga promotes muscle coordination and reflexes, reducing the risk of falls. [8]

Regular yoga practice is recommended for people who are unable to perform high impact exercises. Yoga can reduce stiffness, increase flexibility, and range of motion. Research studies have also revealed that yoga can lower the risk of fractures in the vertebral column. 

Bicep Curls

Biceps curls are a form of muscle strengthening exercises usually performed using weights.

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You can perform bicep curls using resistance bands or dumbbells weighing about 1 to 5 pounds. You can perform them while standing or seated depending on what makes you feel comfortable.

Begin by holding the ends of a resistance band in each hand and step on the center of the band. If you are using dumbbells, hold them in each hand. Then, pull the band or weights toward your chest. Lower your arms to the starting position.

Repeat this about 8 to 12 times. You can perform these exercises once or twice every day to strengthen your biceps to make your bones and muscles stronger. 


Squats are a great exercise to strengthen your leg bones. They are particularly beneficial for working out the front of the legs, the hips, and buttocks. [9]

To start, stand straight with your feet slightly apart. Then, rest your hands on a sturdy counter or a piece of furniture for balance. Slowly, squat down by bending at the knees. Keep your back straight and lean forward slightly.

Squat only until the thighs are parallel to the ground. Then, return to the standing position by tightening your hip muscles and buttocks. Repeat this exercise 8 to 12 times. 

Squats are recommended for strengthening the bones and muscles of the legs and improving balance. Squats can also reduce stiffness in the joints and provide relief from joint pains allowing you to move more freely.

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Research studies have shown that squats may also help to improve bone mineral density and reduce the risk of osteoporosis. [10]

Standing on one leg

An easy-to-perform exercise for improving bone health is to practice standing on one leg. 

It sounds very simple. Yet, it has been found to be highly effective for protecting your bones against the risk of fractures. 

To practice, stand on one foot for 1 minute. Make sure you have a sturdy piece of furniture close to you in case you need to grab onto something when you lose balance. Repeat the same with your other leg. 

You may increase the duration of the exercise as you gain muscle strength and balancing abilities. This exercise works by promoting balance and correcting your posture.


Like muscles, bones are also living tissues that respond to exercises by becoming stronger. People of all ages need to exercise regularly to achieve optimum bone mass and strength. 

Bone building exercises help you maintain your muscle strength and balance, which, in turn, helps to prevent a fall and related fractures. Regular exercise is essential for people of all ages to reduce their risk of osteoporosis, osteopenia, and osteoarthritis. 

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  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5080180/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9927006
  3. https://www.nof.org/patients/treatment/exercisesafe-movement/osteoporosis-exercise-for-strong-bones/
  4. https://www.webmd.com/osteoporosis/guide/osteoporosis-exercise#1
  5. https://www.bones.nih.gov/health-info/bone/bone-health/exercise/exercise-your-bone-health
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16702776
  7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4728958/
  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24016820
  9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6279907/
  10. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6323511/

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