Sports Participation in High School and College Leads to High Bone Density and Greater Rates of Bone Loss in Young Men: Results from a Population-Based Study.

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Estimated lifetime risk of an osteoporotic fracture in men over the age of 50 years is substantial and lifestyle factors such as physical activity may explain variation in bone mass and bone loss associated with aging. Men (n = 253) aged 20–66 years were followed for 7.5 years and factors that influence changes in means and rates of change in bone mass, density, and size using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) and peripheral quantitative computed tomography (pQCT) were investigated; in particular, seasons of sports participation during high school and college. Men with greater sports participation had higher total hip bone mineral content (BMC) (48.4 ± 0.9 and 48.6 ± 0.9 g for 7–12 and 13+ seasons vs. 45.6 ± 0.8 and 45.4 ± 0.7 g for 0 and 1–6 seasons, respectively p < 0.05) and areal bone mineral density (aBMD) (1.082 ± 0.015 and 1.087 ± 0.015 g/cm2 for 7–12 and 13+ seasons vs. 1.011 ± 0.015 and 1.029 ± 0.013 g/cm2 for 0 and 1–6 seasons, respectively p < 0.05) than men who participated in less sport-seasons. However, men with higher sports participation also had greater rates of bone loss in their mid-twenties at the hip (BMC − 0.8 and − 1.2% and aBMD − 0.8 and − 0.9% for 7–12 and 13+ seasons of sport participation, respectively) compared to those with 0 seasons of sport participation (BMC − 0.6% and aBMD − 0.6%) (all p < 0.05). Similar results were observed for femoral neck aBMD. Men with 7+ seasons of sport participation had higher cross-sectional area at the 20% distal radius site than those with no sports participation (all p < 0.05). These findings support significant effects of high school and/or college sports participation on bone mass and geometry in men throughout adulthood.

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Calcified Tissue International





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PMID: 29302709

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