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According to Health Canada’s research - physical inactivity is the cause of premature death, chronic disease and disability.

SAFETY NET

Reduce the chances of injury by making sure you have the right protective gear for all the sports you play.

The benefits of physical activity, no matter what your age, include an overall improvement in your health and wellbeing.

Here are a few benefits you can expect:

  • maintenance or achievement of a healthy body weight
  • reduction in stress
  • strengthening of your heart and lungs
  • increase in energy levels and mood
  • improvement of your outlook on life
  • boost in self-esteem
  • distraction for food cravings and emotional eating
  • reduction in bone loss associated with osteoporosis

 

There are many ways to stay active without spending your days at the gym. There are a lot of simple things you can do every day like:

  • daily walks, with friends or a dog
  • working in the yard or garden
  • taking stairs instead of elevators
  • playing with your kids
  • having some fun! Go dancing, skating or swimming

Wondering what type of activities and how much of them are right for you? For complete and comprehensive information consult Canada’s Guide to Healthy Eating and Physical Activity, or visit their website at http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/hp-ps/hl-mvs/pag-gap/downloads-eng.php/index.html where you’ll find Canada’s Physical Activity Guides for all ages.

To get an idea of what you’ll find there, here’s a brief overview. Physical activities can be broken down into three categories, choose a balance of all three to get the best results:

Endurance activities give you energy by helping your heart, lungs and circulatory system stay healthy, and range from walking and doing household chores to playing sports. Adults should incorporate endurance into their routine four to seven times a week.

Flexibility activities keep your muscles relaxed and your joints mobile. These are gentle activities which include reaching, bending and stretching all of your muscle groups. Adults will benefit most by choosing these activities four to seven times a week.

Strength activities improve your posture and guard against osteoporosis, since they help your muscles and bones stay strong. Working your muscles against some kind of resistance, pushing or pulling, and maintaining a balance of the exercises between your upper and lower body, left and right side is what works best. Adults should choose these activities two to four times a week.

Seniors should start slowly, and build up – they’ll get the most benefit from 30 to 60 minutes of daily moderate activity. Their routine should include training from all three areas – endurance, flexibility and strength.

Current statistics indicate that most children and youth would benefit from increasing their levels of physical activity by 30 minutes a day. Over a period of three to four months, they should gradually increase their activity to at least 90 minutes a day. For kids and teens – this means more time on their bikes, running, swimming and moving around, and a lot less time sitting in front of a TV, a computer screen or a video game.

No matter what your age, you should consult your doctor prior to increasing your activity levels. You can get the most out of life by taking care of your body with the right kind and amount of regular physical activity.

Key Reference:
Health – Physical Activity Guide
http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/hp-ps/hl-mvs/pag-gap/downloads-eng.php/index.html