Report Home| Ordering Information | Related Links | Contact Us
A NEW VIEW OF PHYSICAL ACTIVITY:
This report brings together, for the first time, what has been learned about physical activity and health from decades of research. Among its major findings:
THE BENEFITS OF REGULAR PHYSICAL ACTIVITY:
Regular physical activity that is performed on most days of the week reduces the risk of developing or dying from some of the leading causes of illness and death in the United States. Regular physical activity improves health in the following ways:
A MAJOR PUBLIC HEALTH CONCERN:
Given the numerous health benefits of physical activity, the hazards of being inactive are clear. Physical inactivity is a serious, nationwide problem. Its scope poses a public health challenge for reducing the national burden of unnecessary illness and premature death.
WHAT IS A MODERATE AMOUNT OF PHYSICAL ACTIVITY?
As the examples listed in the box show, a moderate amount of physical activity* can be achieved in a variety of ways. People can select activities that they enjoy and that fit into their daily lives. Because amount of activity is a function of duration, intensity, and frequency, the same amount of activity can be obtained in longer sessions of moderately intense activities (such as brisk walking) as in shorter sessions of more strenuous activities (such as running): +
EXAMPLES OF MODERATE AMOUNTS OF ACTIVITY:
* A moderate amount of physical activity is roughly equivalent to physical activity that uses approximately 150 Calories (kcal) of energy per day, or 1,000 Calories per week.
PRECAUTIONS FOR A HEALTHY START:
To avoid soreness and injury, individuals contemplating an increase in physical activity should start out slowly and gradually build up to the desired amount to give the body time to adjust. People with chronic health problems, such as heart disease, diabetes, or obesity, or who are at high risk for these problems should first consult a physician before beginning a new program of physical activity. Also, men over age 40 and women over age 50 who plan to begin a new vigorous physical activity program should consult a physician first to be sure they do not have heart disease or other health problems.
STATUS OF THE NATION – A NEED FOR CHANGE:
Adolescents and Young Adults
High School Students
IDEAS FOR IMPROVEMENT:
This report identifies promising ways to help people include more physical activity in their daily lives.
SPECIAL MESSAGES FOR SPECIAL POPULATIONS:
People with High Blood Pressure
People Feeling Anxious, Depressed, or Moody
Regular physical activity improves mood, helps
People with Arthritis
Regular physical activity can help control joint swelling
People with Disabilities
Regular physical activity can help people with chronic,
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: