Almost everyone knows about the increased dangers of falling and breaking bones as we age. But traditional workout programs never really focused on enhancing bone strength to aid in the fight against osteoporosis.
OsteoStrong, a five-year-old wellness studio franchise operation owned by Yvonne and Jim Parsons, who originally brought Curves for Women to town, hopes to change that.
“We help people with issues with bone health,” said Yvonne, explaining that people stop producing the mineral and tissue that make our bones strong after we turn 30. “If you’re playing tennis or you’re doing high impact sports — hiking, running, tennis, those kinds of things — generally people maintain their bone mass. But as we age, especially for women, we start losing it when we start menopause because our body leaches the calcium out of our bones.”
That leads to osteoporosis or osteopenia, with half of all women and a third of all men over 50 eventually breaking a bone. “It’s the third leading cause of death after 65,” said Parsons ominously. “Forty percent of people who have a fracture will be staying in a nursing home after 65, and 20 percent will never walk again.”
Developed by biomechanics engineer John Jaquish, OsteoStrong works on the principle of “osteogenic” loading. Using super-resistance machines that cover every section of the body — a chest press, leg press, core pull, and skeleton-stressing vertical lift that resemble weight machines and feature feedback monitors — OsteoStrong clients come in once a week, briefly stand on vibration platforms to warm up, then exert 30 seconds of all-out force at each workout station. A session is designed to take approximately 10 minutes from start to finish.
Parsons offered a few analogies to explain how it works. “If you go into a dark room, how long does it take for your pupil to enlarge? If you start to put your hand on a fire, how quickly does your body respond by pulling it away?” she asked. “It just is like a nanosecond, so it only takes five seconds to hit the degree that you need to for the axial loading when you’re doing it on the equipment.”
Curious to try it out? An initial visit is free.
Every day, the staff of the Santa Barbara Independent works hard to sort out truth from rumor and keep you informed of what’s happening across the entire Santa Barbara community. Now there’s a way to directly enable these efforts. Support the Independent by making a direct contribution or with a subscription to Indy+.