Nova Scotia Journal

Saturday, December 2, 2023

Sedentary Canadians are failing to meet fitness standards

failing to meet fitness standards

Key Takeaways:

  • When it comes to physical fitness, it appears that the majority of Canadian adults are falling short.
  • The report, released on Tuesday, also gives adults a “C” for total daily steps and moderate-to-vigorous physical activity.

The 2nd report card for adults from ParticipAction, a non-profit organization, promoting healthy living and ranking children’s fitness levels, suggests that many people were inactive during the COVID-19 pandemic.

It gives adults an “F” for sedentary behavior after discovering that 88% of adults polled said they were relatively inactive for more than eight waking hours per day. Sitting while watching television, playing video games, doing paperwork, listening to music, or commuting are examples of such behavior.

The findings are primarily based on data collected by Statistics Canada through various surveys in 2020 and 2021.

Approximately 49% of adults polled took at least 7,500 steps per day, which Statistics Canada defines as a “physically active lifestyle.” This is slightly reduced from the last report card, which examined pre-pandemic activity in 2018 or 2019 and was released in late 2019.

Meanwhile, 57% reported at least 150 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity per week, consistent with the previous study.

Researchers are urging Canadians to be more active, noting that many people reported being less active due to pandemic-related restrictions that closed gyms, offices, and sports leagues, even though some people discovered opportunities to be more active.

Canadians now have a little less physical activity baked into their daily lives than they did in 2019, she said, because many people are spending more time at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the report, people who would normally walk or bike for part of their commute may no longer do so, as recreational activities have become less of a priority or are no longer available.

Nonetheless, Vanderloo stated that the pandemic caused some people to become more active. “We may have missed some opportunities,” she said, “but we saw more people spending time outside.”

The report noted that not every sedentary behavior is created equal, citing evidence of cognitive benefits from sitting while reading, typing, playing a musical instrument, or doing arts and crafts.

Source: CTV News

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