CHICAGO, IL – Get out there and regularly kick that soccer ball around with your kids, you may be
helping them prevent a broken hip when they are your age, say researchers presenting their work at
the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine’s Specialty Day in Chicago, IL.
“According to our study, exercise interventions in childhood may be associated with lower fracture
risks as people age, due to the increases in peak bone mass that occurs in growing children who
perform regular physical activity,” said lead author, Bjorn Rosengren, MD, PhD of Skane University
Hospital, Malmo, Sweden.
Rosengren and his colleagues conducted a population-based controlled exercise intervention for six
years in children age 7-9 years in Malmo, Sweden. In the intervention group 362 girls and 446 boys
received 40 minutes of daily physical education at school. The control group of 780 girls and 807
boys received 60 minutes of physical education per week. Researchers registered incident fractures
in all participants and followed skeletal development annually. During the time of the study there were
72 fractures in the intervention group and 143 in the control group resulting in similar fracture risks.
The increase in spine bone mineral density was higher in both the boys and girls in the intervention
During this same time, researchers performed a retrospective cross-sectional study of 709 former
male athletes with a mean age of 69 years and 1,368 matched controls with a mean age of 70 years
to determine how many had suffered fractures and rates of bone density loss. Within the former
athletes group, bone mass density dropped only minimally from +1.0 to +0.7 standard deviations
compared to the control group.
“Increased activity in the younger ages helped induce higher bone mass and improve skeletal size in
girls without increasing the fracture risk. Our study highlights yet another reason why kids need to get
regular daily exercise to improve their health both now and in the future,” said Rosengren.
The American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine (AOSSM) is a world leader in sports medicine
education, research, communication and fellowship, and includes national and international orthopaedic
sports medicine leaders. The Society works closely with many other sports medicine specialists, including
athletic trainers, physical therapists, family physicians, and others to improve the identification, prevention,
treatment, and rehabilitation of sports injuries. AOSSM is also a founding partner of the STOP Sports
Injuries campaign to prevent overuse and traumatic injuries in kids. For more information on AOSSM or the
STOP Sports Injuries campaign, visit www.sportsmed.org or www.stopsportsinjuries.org