World Osteoporosis Day – get active

Minister for Health Sussan Ley is pleading with Australian women to “put their health first” and get active to ensure they – and their families - live more healthy, happy and productive lives.

 

Ms Ley’s call to action comes on World Osteoporosis Day, with over a million Australians – mainly women – suffering from the debilitating brittle bone condition, despite a key way to reduce its onset and manage symptoms being regular physical activity.

 

In order to inspire action, Ms Ley today launched the Federal Government’s ‘No time for never’ campaign aimed at getting Australians of all ages to take up organised sporting activities as part of its broader national sports participation strategy Play.Sport.Australia, which was launched earlier this year.

 

Ms Ley said she was worried that the increasingly long-work hours, hectic family schedules and sedentary lifestyles of Australian women were “literally killing us” and the time for “I’ll get around to it” had passed.

 

“It’s a reality that Australian women continue to be the dominant force in managing Australian households and caring for family members and friends and many of us are guilty of putting the health, wellbeing and needs of others ahead of our own,” Ms Ley said.

 

“I well remember as a working mother with three kids, it can be really difficult to find the time when you’re having to run the kids around, run the family, run the household and then on top of that to go for a run yourself and I’m the first to admit I’ve been guilty of putting my health last.

 

“But whether you’re a wife, mother, grandmother, sister, daughter, aunty, niece, carer or friend – it doesn’t matter – there’s no excuse; we must start putting our health first and I’m here to support you.

 

“That’s why to kick things off I’m committing to doing weight bearing physical activity three times a week to improve bone strength and also walking, instead of driving, wherever I can.”

 

“If you’re a mother, or grandmother, for example whose standing on the sidelines after school watching the kids play sport, why don’t you consider organising a social team or league of your own. It’s a great way to maximise your time and physical activity all in one.

 

“Or it may be as simple as joining a local swimming class or set up a regular social bowls or netball tournament. The key is you’re more likely to stick with it if it’s organised and structured.

 

Women of all ages should continue aerobic and strength/resistance activities to minimise bone loss and osteoporosis. Exercise training programs can prevent or reverse almost one per cent of bone loss per year in both pre- and post-menopausal women.

 

20 October 2015.