Bone Fit : A Program for Health and Exercise Professionals

Organization Sponsor: Osteoporosis Canada

Organization Partner: Canadian Physiotherapy Association


Program Description

The Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care announced the launch of Ontario’s first Osteoporosis Strategy. The goal of the strategy was to reduce fractures, morbidity, mortality and costs from osteoporosis through an integrated and comprehensive approach aimed at health promotion and disease management. One of the five focus areas was on professional education to enhance the use of best practice in osteoporosis care by health care professionals through the development of tools for practitioners, education material for dissemination by health units etc.

In alignment with this focus, Osteoporosis Canada has implemented a training program for health and exercise professionals called Bone Fit. The aim is to create an advanced workshop program which provides up-to-date training for health care professionals on the most appropriate, safe and effective way to prescribe and progress exercise for people with osteoporosis. In addition, the training addresses safety issues for health care professionals who are treating patients with osteoporosis who have injuries to muscles, bones and joints.

Program Approximate Cost: 

Registration for Bone Fit costs $400

Funding Sources: 

Osteoporosis Canada

Strategies For Sustainability: 

The Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP) Health & Fitness Program has partnered with Osteoporosis Canada on the new education program, Bone FitTM. CSEP has contributed to the development of the program and is pleased to endorse the Bone Fit workshop for CSEP Certified Exercise PhysiologistsTM. The course is based on best practices in the management of Osteoporosis.

Impact Of Program: 

About 10 workshops a year has been offered. Testimonials have been positive. "The workshop was one of the best that I have attended in my 20 years of practice" - PT, Queen's University Workshop

Evaluation Tools: 

Using the proposed Bone Fit™ objectives, a needs survey was sent out to persons with osteoporosis. The responses from 175 participants helped shape the initial content of the syllabus for the workshop.A subsequent survey was developed and administered to health care practitioners who would assess, recommend and/or conduct exercise-training programs for patients.Feedback was obtained in the areas of: relative importance of proposed topics. The final syllabus was developed incorporating the needs of both the consumer and the practitioner.

Key Elements Towards Success: 

"Bone Fit focuses on a critical knowledge gap and highlights the expanding role for physiotherapy and exercise in osteoporosis management." says CPA President Robert Werstine, MSc, BSc PT, FCAMPT.

The course will be presented in two parts: one online self-learning module and an interactive workshop. The workshop will focus on the assessment of the osteoporotic patient and recommendations for safe exercise. It will be conducted over one and a half days using both problem-based cases to facilitate learning and interactive practical sessions.

Challenges To Meet Them: 

Osteoporosis Canada recommends regular, weight-bearing, balance and strengthening exercises for all patients with osteoporosis and others at risk of fracture. They estimate that hundreds of thousands of Canadians suffer preventable fractures each year because their osteoporosis goes undiagnosed or untreated. This alarming statistic reinforces the need for better diagnosis and management of this often-misunderstood condition.

Length and Stage of Project: 


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