Let’s Get Moving…What You Need to Know About Physical Activity!
by Dr. Maria Clapperton
What is Physical Activity?
Physical Activity is any form of movement of the body that uses energy.
Dancing, brisk walking, gardening and doing daily chores around the home are just some common examples of physical activity.
Insufficient amounts of physical activity can lead to increased risk of obesity, diabetes (type2), high blood pressure, heart attacks, strokes and premature death.
Being physically active can improve your health.
Anyone can improve their level of physical activity, always remember to start low and go slow!
The more you do, the greater the health benefits and the better you will feel.
Being Physically Active Can Help You To:
- Prevent chronic diseases like heart disease, cancer, and stroke (the top three health-related causes of death)
- Increase your chances of living longer
- Improve your self-esteem
- Relieve stress and decrease your chances of becoming depressed
- Sleep well at night
- Have more energy and move around more easily
- Have stronger muscles and bones
- Loose weight or maintain a healthy weight
- Spend time with friends and family or meet new people
- Enjoy yourself and have fun
By Not Being Physically Active, You Are More Likely To:
- Get heart disease
- Get type 2 diabetes
- Have high blood pressure
- Have high blood cholesterol
- Have a stroke
- Have increased risk of breast and colon cancer
The World Health Organization recommends a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity per week, i.e. at least 30 minutes, five days per week.
There Are Different Types of Physical Activity:
- Aerobic Activities – increase heart rate and breathing and help to burn fat ( at moderate intensity, you can still talk but can’t sing whereas at vigorous intensity, you can only say a few words before stopping to catch your breath)
- Bone Strengthening Activities- make your bones stronger
- Balance and Stretching Activities– improve stability and reduce the risk of falls