Wolff's Law explains that progressive loading of weight in resistance exercises has a positive effect on bone formation and remodeling. (Cross -referenced from a research review article in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise).
This kind of makes sense to me. Exercise with appropriate progressive loading will, with proper nutrition, build muscle in the locations where stress is being applied. Bone, under stress, will remodel under the right conditions. I always caveat "with proper nutrition" because without the building blocks, it is difficult for your body to repair and rebuild. Don't forget rest and recovery.
In exploring this topic different studies were performed. Load bearing parts of the skeleton received more benefit. So, utilizing a progressive loading approach is how it's done (as opposed to walking and cardio).
Some fun information from a research study Effects of Resistance Exercise on Bone Health:
"Based on results obtained from the Advanced Resistance Exercise Device, RE can prevent significant loss of muscle and bone with prolonged exposure to microgravity during spaceflight." (Hong, A., Sang, K. 2018)
Muscle and bone work together to provide the movement you perform, so they both benefit. And if you sit for long periods of time or suffer injury, decline in the tissues can occur.
What does progressive loading look like?
Progressive loading is gradually increasing weight on the muscle group that is working. For example: the squats!
(1) Start with your legs shoulder width apart. Then bend at the knees. This is a body weight exercise.
(2) Record the number of reps (repetitions) and sets you performed on this exercise.
(3) After a while of correctly performing the movement, you may begin to add weight. I would start with dumbbells instead of barbells. The bar itself is about 45 lbs.
(4) Always take into consideration recovery and nutrition. Discuss with a professional if you have questions. Yes, even if you have DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) you can still workout. Don't eat back the calories if you are trying to lose weight. Do eat nutrient dense foods that contain calcium and protein.
Here are some yummy post workout snack ideas!