19. Growing a Healthy Skeleton: The Importance of Mechanical Loading

  1. Clifford J. Rosen MD
  1. Mark R. Forwood

Published Online: 19 JUL 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781118453926.ch19

Primer on the Metabolic Bone Diseases and Disorders of Mineral Metabolism, Eighth Edition

Primer on the Metabolic Bone Diseases and Disorders of Mineral Metabolism, Eighth Edition

How to Cite

Forwood, M. R. (2013) Growing a Healthy Skeleton: The Importance of Mechanical Loading, in Primer on the Metabolic Bone Diseases and Disorders of Mineral Metabolism, Eighth Edition (ed C. J. Rosen), John Wiley & Sons, Inc., Ames, USA. doi: 10.1002/9781118453926.ch19

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 19 JUL 2013
  2. Published Print: 19 AUG 2013

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781118453889

Online ISBN: 9781118453926

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Keywords:

  • childhood bone adaptation;
  • mechanical loading;
  • peak bone mass (PBM);
  • peak bone strength;
  • skeleton

Summary

The basic morphology of the skeleton is determined genetically, but its final mass and architecture are modulated by adaptive mechanisms sensitive to mechanical factors. There is convincing evidence that growing bone has greater capacity to respond to increased mechanical loading than the adult skeleton. Skeletal adaptation to mechanical loading must increase bone strength without unduly increasing the metabolic cost of locomotion. Compared to adults, the skeleton of children and adolescents is capable of greater structural adaptations in response to the mechanical stimulus of physical activity. To grow healthy bones, physical activity should incorporate repetitive cyclical loads that include a range of strain magnitudes and directions, such as running and jumping. The parameters of loading have been translated into feasible public health interventions that have achieved improved bone mass and strength in children and adolescents.