Skip to main content

Bone Mineralization Patterns

Bone Mineralization Patterns

Bone mineralization pattern refers to the types of minerals (calcium is of paramount importance) that are incorporated into bone, the amount of the minerals that are present (referred to as the bone density), and the possible differences in bone mineral composition and density in different regions of the skeleton.

Calcium, in the form of calcium phosphate, is incorporated into bone as a highly structured crystal called hydroxyapatite. This crystallized mineral is essential for the hardness of bones, and for their rigidity—the latter is important, otherwise the bones may inadvertently bend when a force is applied.

Hydroxyapatite makes up about one-quarter of the volume and approximately half the mass of normal adult bones. The calcium crystals tend to associate with fibrils of collagen in bones.

The importance of calcium is underscored in osteoporosis, which involves the progressive loss of calcium. Bones become more fragile and more prone to fracture and breakage under stresses that would otherwise not be damaging. Post-menopausal women are especially susceptible to osteoporosis. As well, female athletes who, as a result of training stress, cease menstruation (amenorrhea) can trigger premature osteoporosis, which may persist despite calcium supplementation.

In female athletes, exercise can also produce increased bone mineralization in regions that are especially stressed by the athletic activity. As one example, elite figure skaters and gymnasts can have increased bone mineral density in the bones in the lower body. In another example, physical activity in adolescence can increase the bone density of the femur (the portion of the thigh bone with the socket into which the hip joint fits).

A number of studies involving female athletes has established that the increased bone density that is a benefit of exercise outweighs the potential risk of bone loss due to osteoporotic loss of calcium.

Nutrition is important in maintaining bone mineralization patterns. For example, vitamin D is involved in calcium regulation, and a vitamin D deficiency can lead to the depletion of bone minerals. This is relevant to athletics, where the need to maintain a slim, lightweight body may tempt an athlete to adopt an improper diet.

see also Body composition and weight control; Body fat.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Bone Mineralization Patterns." World of Sports Science. . Encyclopedia.com. 13 Nov. 2018 <https://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Bone Mineralization Patterns." World of Sports Science. . Encyclopedia.com. (November 13, 2018). https://www.encyclopedia.com/sports/sports-fitness-recreation-and-leisure-magazines/bone-mineralization-patterns

"Bone Mineralization Patterns." World of Sports Science. . Retrieved November 13, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/sports/sports-fitness-recreation-and-leisure-magazines/bone-mineralization-patterns

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.