My Friend soon to be Dr. Chad Waterbury Recently wrote this post On “Bones” and I thought it was a good quick review and or introduction so I decided to share it with you.
The post has inspired me to write my own post soon on bone development for the youth athlete stay tuned for that one after the New Year.
Bare Bones Physiology- Chad Waterbury
“Your body is comprised of around 206 bones. Unless you broke one of them at some point in your life, you probably don’t give much thought to any of them.
But bone physiology is important for any trainer or hard-training athlete to understand, so I’m going to cover the basics of what you need to know.
First off, bone isn’t a passive tissue that just maintains your uprightness and holds your soft tissues in place. Nope, bone is a living, adaptable tissue that’s classified as an organ. It can grow, repair and remodel, much like muscle tissue.
Growth: bone starts off as hyaline cartilage and then ossifies (gets hard) to give it that hard structure adults carry around.
Repair: as you know, when a bone breaks it doesn’t stay broken. The bone can repair big damage (i.e., fracture) and it can also repair micro damage that occurs on a daily basis. You don’t feel micro damage but it occurs each time you lift heavy weights or land from a jump.
However, you will feel micro damage if it accumulates faster than the bone can repair itself, thus causing a stress fracture. The only treatment for a stress fracture is rest so you can let the skeleton system put the deposition/resorption ratio back in balance.
Remodel: cells in bones feel tension and respond by either laying down new bone (deposition) or removing bone (resorption) when the compressive forces halt for an extended timeframe.
Importantly, remodeling is not just growth. Patients with paralysis experience high levels of remodeling through resorption. Remodeling and resorption are constantly occurring throughout life. Whether that remodeling results in more or less bone depends on the ratio between the two.
Bare Bones Physiology
Your bones consist of spongy bone on the inside, and a hard covering of compact bone on the outside. As mentioned, bone is a living tissue that receives blood from arteries and vessels that supply nutrients to keep it strong or make it smaller through resorption (deloading) or repair damage.
There are three types of cells within bone: osteoblasts, osteoclasts and osteocytes.
Osteoblasts lay down new bone either after a fracture or when the bone is stressed through load bearing and weight training.
Osteoclasts do the opposite since they chew up bone either after a fracture to remove the damaged tissue, or when you unload the skeleton system. Astronauts have to deal with the ramifications of increased osteoclasts (resorption) activity when they’re in space.
Osteocytes help maintain the bone integrity and can deposit or reabsorb bone based on the demand you give the skeletal system. Osteoblasts eventually become osteocytes.
Now, I’ll address three important questions about bone that are frequently asked… Read the entire post here
Until Next Time