If you play contact sports, then you should take precautionary measures to prevent bone fractures. These measures should be geared towards building your bones and improving your balance. Specifically, you should:

Exercise to Build and Strengthen Your Bones

Bones are living tissues, which means that they respond to exercise just like other tissues in your body. The more you use your bones, the stronger and bigger they become. This is good because big, strong bones do not break as easily as small, weaker ones.

Exercises that will build and strengthen your bones should fall within the weight-bearing and resistance training. Weight bearing exercises force your bones to work against gravity, and examples of such exercises include:

  • Jumping rope
  • Dancing
  • Running
  • Stair climbing

Resistance training, on the other hand, works to strengthen your muscles and hence your bones. Examples include lifting weights, using elastic exercise bands and pull-ups.

Exercise to Reduce Your Risks of Falling

Even if you have very strong bones, you can still get a fracture if you keep falling (hard) all the time. Therefore, you should also strive to reduce your risk of falling by improving your balance, flexibility and muscle strength. According to WebMD, some of the exercises and sports that can help you in this regard include:

  • Tai Chi – the graceful moves help with coordination
  • Yoga – helps with concentration, body awareness and balancing different parts of the body such as the hips, arms and neck
  • Dancing – especially salsa, samba, tango, rhumba and similar dance moves, help with balance

Eat to Keep Your Bones Healthy

Finally, you should also modify your diet to include foods rich in calcium, vitamin D, and protein and low in sodium. Sources of calcium include:

  • Dairy products such as yogurt
  • Soybeans
  • Dark, leafy green vegetables such as tulips, collard greens and spinach
  • Enriched and fortified drinks and foods
  • Supplements

You can get vitamin D through various means such as:

  • Endogenous synthesis triggered by exposure to sunlight
  • Fatty fish such as tuna, salmon and trout
  • Mushrooms grown in ultraviolet light
  • Fortified foods and supplements

The need for reduced sodium is explained by the fact that the mineral increases your tendency to pass urine. Since you excrete some calcium with the urine, you need to consume more to meet your dietary requirement. The main source of calcium is table salt, so it is in your best interest to moderate its intake.

Despite your best measures, it is still possible for you to fracture one of your bones. When this happens, you should consult an orthopedic surgeon and follow all his or her recommendations.