Why is physical activity important?
The health benefits of physical activity are numerous: markedly reduced mortality from coronary heart disease, reduced risk of developing hypertension, diabetes and colon cancer, enhanced mental health, stronger muscles and bones, and helping to preserve independence and maintain function in older people. (1)
What should we be aiming for?
Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines for children, young people, adults and older Australians provide information about the health benefits of leading an active lifestyle, as well as offering suggestions for how to incorporate physical activity and minimise sedentary behaviour in your everyday life.
Go to Australia’s Physical Activity and Sedentary Behavior Guidelines for links to brochures, a summary fact sheet for each of the guidelines, tips and ideas for how to be physically active, as well as evidence review reports.
- 60% of adults were sufficiently active for health benefit in 2014 (2)
- 39% adults were sedentary on weekdays, (18% on weekends and 12% every day) in 2011 (3)
- 62% of Queenslanders 15 years and older participated in sport at least once in 2012 (4)
- 41% of children were active for at least one hour every day in the previous week in 2013 (5)
- 34% of children averaged two or more hours of recreational screen time per day in 2013, exceeding the recommended guideline (5)
- 66% of children participated in organised sport in the previous week in 2013. (5)
Find statistics specific for your region refer to The health of Queenslanders 2014 – Fifth report of the Chief Health Officer Queensland.
Find statistics for your local government area at Local government area – Preventive Health Surveys.
- US Department of Health and Human Services. Physical activity and health: a report of the Surgeon General. US Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion: Atlanta; 1996.
- Department of Health. Self reported health status 2014. Preventive health indicators: Queensland. Queensland Government: Brisbane; 2014.
- Queensland Health. Self reported health status 2011: physical activity levels and factors associated with intentions to increase physical activity. Queensland Government: Brisbane; 2011.
- Australian Bureau of Statistics. Participation in sport and physical recreation, Australia, 2011-12. Cat. no. 4177.0. ABS: Canberra; 2012.
- Department of Health. Child health status 2013: Queensland report. Queensland Government: Brisbane; 2014.