Osteoporosis International

, Volume 19, Issue 11, pp 1557–1566

Competitive physical activity early in life is associated with bone mineral density in elderly Swedish men

Authors

  • M. Nilsson
    • Center for Bone Research at the Sahlgrenska Academy, Dept. of Internal MedicineGothenburg University
  • C. Ohlsson
    • Center for Bone Research at the Sahlgrenska Academy, Dept. of Internal MedicineGothenburg University
  • A. L. Eriksson
    • Center for Bone Research at the Sahlgrenska Academy, Dept. of Internal MedicineGothenburg University
  • K. Frändin
    • Department of Neurobiology, Caring Sciences and Society, Division of PhysiotherapyKarolinska Institutet
  • M. Karlsson
    • Clinical and Molecular Osteoporosis Research Unit, Dept. of Clinical SciencesLund University
    • Dept. of OrthopaedicsMalmö University Hospital
  • Ö. Ljunggren
    • Dept. of Medical SciencesUniversity of Uppsala
  • D. Mellström
    • Center for Bone Research at the Sahlgrenska Academy, Dept. of Internal MedicineGothenburg University
    • Center for Bone Research at the Sahlgrenska Academy, Dept. of Internal MedicineGothenburg University
    • Division of Endocrinology, Department of Internal MedicineSahlgrenska University Hospital
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s00198-008-0600-8

Cite this article as:
Nilsson, M., Ohlsson, C., Eriksson, A.L. et al. Osteoporos Int (2008) 19: 1557. doi:10.1007/s00198-008-0600-8

Abstract

Summary

In this population-based study of 75-year-old men (n = 498), we investigated the association between physical activity (PA) early in life and present bone mineral density (BMD). We demonstrate that a high frequency of competitive sports early in life is associated with BMD at several bone sites, indicating that increases in BMD following PA are preserved longer than previously believed.

Introduction

Physical activity (PA) increases bone mineral density (BMD) during growth. It is unclear if the positive effects remain at old age. In this study, we aimed to determine if PA early in life was associated with BMD in elderly men.

Methods

In this population-based study, 498 men, 75.2 ± 3.3 (mean±SD) years old, were included. BMD was assessed using DXA. Data concerning lifetime PA, including both competitive (CS) and recreational sports (RS), and occupational physical load (OPL), were collected at interview.

Results

Subjects in the highest frequency group of CS in the early period (10–35 years), had higher BMD at the total body (4.2%, p < 0.01), total hip (7.0%, p < 0.01), trochanter (8.7%, p < 0.01), and lumbar spine (7.9%, p < 0.01), than subjects not involved in CS. A stepwise linear regression model showed that frequency of CS in the early period independently positively predicted present BMD at the total body (β = 0.12, p < 0.01), total hip (β = 0.11, p < 0.01), trochanter (β = 0.12, p < 0.01), and lumbar spine (β = 0.11, p = 0.01).

Conclusions

We demonstrate that PA in CS early in life is associated with BMD in 75-year-old Swedish men, indicating that increases in BMD following PA are preserved longer than previously believed.

Keywords

Bone mineral densityMenPhysical activity

Copyright information

© International Osteoporosis Foundation and National Osteoporosis Foundation 2008