Wearing a weight vest can improve your bone health
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Weighted vest exercise improves indices of fall risk in older women. J. M. Shaw and C. M. SnowJ. Gerontology Series A: Biol Sci. and Medical Sciences, 1998;Vol 53, Issue 1 M53-M58.  Conclusion: Lower body exercise, using a weighted vest for resistance, provides an effective means of improving key indices of falls in postmenopausal women.

Long-term Exercise Using Weighted Vests Prevents Hip Bone Loss in Postmenopausal Women  C. M. Snow, J. M. Shaw, K. M. Winters, and K. A. Witzke.  J. Gerontol. A Biol. Sci. Med. Sci., September 1, 2000; 55(9): 489M - 491.   5 year program using weighted vests plus jumping exercise maintains BMD by preventing bone loss in older postmenopausal women.  This program appears to promote long-term adherance and compliance as evidenced by the commitment of the exercisers for more than 5 yrs.

Effects of exercise training with weighted vests on bone turnover and isokinetic strength in postmenopausal women.  Klentrau P, Slack J, Roy, B, Ladouceur M,  J Aging Phys Act. 2007 Jul;15(3):287-99.  Findings support the use of progressive exercise training using weight vests in postmenopausal women.

Site specific response of bone to exercise in pre-menopausal women. Winters-Stone KM, Snow CM.  Bone 2006 Dec;39(6):1203-9. EPub 2006 Jul 28.  12 month study with 2 exercise groups and one control group. Significant differences in the hip (greater trochanter) BMD between exercise groups and the control group. Near significant differences at the spine.

Detraining reverses positive effects of exercise on the musculoskeletal system in premenopausal women. Winters KM, Snow CM. J Bone Miner Res 2000 Dec; 15(12):2495-503. 12 months of progressive training, progressive impact (jump) and lower body resistance, showed significant improvements in strength and power in the exercise group.  Six month withdrawal of exercise after the 12 months of this exercise showed BMD, muscle strength and power decreased significantly toward baseline values.  Control group did not change.  Conclusion is that continued training is needed for bone and muscle strength.

Progressive high-intensity resistance training and bone mineral density changes among premenopausal women: evidence of discordant site specific skeletal effects. Martyn-St James M, Carroll S.  Sports Med 2006; 36(8):683-704.  Review of studies concludes that further studies are needed to look at resistance training on bone mineral density and provide optimal type, intensity and volume of loading. 

Meta analysis of walking for preservation of bone density in postmenopausal women. Martyn-St James M, Carroll S.  Bone. 2008 Sept; 53(3):521-31. Epub 2008 May 26.  Study aimed to assess efficacy of walking as a singular exercise for bone loss.  Concluded that regular walking exercise has no effect on the spine and positive effects at the hip, primarily in the femoral neck.

The effect of weighted vest walking on metabolic responses and ground reaction forces.  Puthoff ML, Darter BJ, Nielson DH, Yach HJ.  Med Sci Sports Exercise. 2006 April; 38(4):746-52.  Study concluded that wearing a weighted vest can increase the metabolic costs, relative exercise intensity and loading of the skeletal system during walking.

Build a Bone Program

National Athletic Trainers association

        “a dynamic warm up performed with a vest weighted with 2% body mass may be the most effective warm up protocol for enhancing jumping performance in high school female athletes”