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Elderly advised to take up judo to prevent breaks

By Ian Quinn

Elderly patients have been advised by researchers to reduce the risk of broken bones through falls by taking up judo.

Scientists at Vrije University in Amsterdam claim osteoporosis sufferers could be trained to turn falls into rolls, wearing special hip protectors in their training to make it safe.

The research, published in the open access journal BMC Research Notes, shows hip fractures could be prevented by teaching the elderly patients judo techniques.

Volunteers were taught how to make a better landing by turning a fall into a rolling movement, bending and twisting the trunk and neck.

Lead researcher Dr Brenda Groen said: 'For obvious safety reasons, this could not be directly assessed using persons with osteoporosis.'

'Therefore, we measured the hip impact forces during the martial arts fall exercises in a group of young adults.'

'Based on our results, however, we believe that fall training would be safe for persons with osteoporosis if they wear hip protectors during the training, perform fall exercises on a thick mattress, and avoid forward fall exercises from a standing position.'

'Since martial arts techniques reduce hip impact forces and can be learned by older persons, martial arts fall training may prevent hip fractures among persons with osteoporosis.'

Judo could help elderly patients reduce the risk of broken bones through falls, researchers found - credit Bystre Dolne on Flickr Judo could help elderly patients reduce the risk of broken bones through falls, researchers found - credit Bystre Dolne on Flickr

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