Does long-term swimming participation have a deleterious effect on the adult female skeleton?
ABSTRACT Swimming is a popular activity for Australian women with proven cardiovascular benefits yet lacks the features thought necessary to stimulate positive adaptive changes in bone. Given that peak bone mass is attained close to the end of the second decade, we asked whether swimming was negatively associated with bone mineral density in premenopausal women beyond this age. Bone mass and retrospective physical activity data were gathered from 43 female swimmers and 44 controls (mean ages 40.4 and 43.8 years, respectively). Swimmers were recruited from the Australian Union of Senior Swimmers International while controls were healthy community dwellers with similar lean mass, fat mass, height, weight and body mass index. None of the participants had a history of medical complaints nor use of medications known to affect bone. Dual energy X-ray absorptiometry was used to determine areal bone mineral density at total body, lumbar spine, proximal femur, distal radius and tibia while self-administered questionnaires were used to approximate historical and recent physical activity and calcium intake. Swimmers had averaged over 2 hours of swimming per week for the past 5 years and 1.45 h/week over lifetime with no systematic swimming exposure for controls. Lifetime exposure to weight bearing and impact exercise were similar. There were no intergroup differences for bone mass at any site though controls had higher incidence of low bone mass/osteoporosis. No differences in bone mass were detected between swimmers in the upper and lower quartiles for swim participation for any period. Long-term swim participation did not compromise areal bone mineral density.
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ABSTRACT: Purpose To summarize the current literature regarding the effects of whole-body vibration (WBV) therapy on the health-related physical fitness of children and adolescents with disabilities. Methods A literature search using MEDLINE–PubMed, SPORT DISCUS, and EMBASE databases was conducted up to August 2013. A total of 22 articles were included in this review (eight randomized controlled trials, four non–randomized controlled trials, three case reports, and seven reviews). Results Most of the studies showed positive effects of WBV on health-related physical fitness in children and adolescents with disabilities. Overall, 10–20 minutes at least three times per week, for a minimum of 26 weeks, with high frequency (between 15 and 35 Hz) and low amplitude (no more than 4 mm of peak-to-peak displacement) might be an appropriate protocol to achieve improvement in body composition and muscular strength. Conclusions Because no serious adverse events have been observed, WBV might be defined as a safe treatment to be applied in children and adolescents with disabling conditions. Further research is recommended to explore the minimum dose of exposure to WBV required to elicit an optimal response in children and adolescents for improving health-related physical fitness. These may be translated into a more specific WBV protocol.Journal of Adolescent Health 04/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2013.11.001 · 2.75 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Swimming, a sport practiced in hypogravity, has sometimes been associated with decreased bone mass. This systematic review aims to summarize and update present knowledge about the effects of swimming on bone mass, structure and metabolism in order to ascertain the effects of this sport on bone tissue. A literature search was conducted up to April 2013. A total of 64 studies focusing on swimmers bone mass, structure and metabolism met the inclusion criteria and were included in the review. It has been generally observed that swimmers present lower bone mineral density than athletes who practise high impact sports and similar values when compared to sedentary controls. However, swimmers have a higher bone turnover than controls resulting in a different structure which in turn results in higher resistance to fracture indexes. Nevertheless, swimming may become highly beneficial regarding bone mass in later stages of life. Swimming does not seem to negatively affect bone mass, although it may not be one of the best sports to be practised in order to increase this parameter, due to the hypogravity and lack of impact characteristic of this sport. Most of the studies included in this review showed similar bone mineral density values in swimmers and sedentary controls. However, swimmers present a higher bone turnover than sedentary controls that may result in a stronger structure and consequently in a stronger bone.PLoS ONE 08/2013; 8(8):e70119. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0070119 · 3.53 Impact Factor