8 Apr, 2014

BHF | Physical Activity Commission findings

08 April 2014

The All-Party Commission on physical activity has today (8th April) published its findings from a five-month investigation into physical inactivity across the UK. 

Their reportTackling Physical Inactivity – A Coordinated Approach, is based on oral evidence from 49 witnesses from the fields of transport, health, education and sport; as well as 150 written submissions from across the UK from people and organisations from the public, private and third sectors.

The key conclusion drawn from their findings is that physical inactivity can only be tackled if everyone plays a role – national and local government, public sector bodies, the private sector, third sector organisations and individual citizens.

The report highlights five areas the Commission feels are vital for action in order to bring this about.

  1. A National Action Plan – A strong forward-looking plan of action is required to tackle inactivity. This requires support from all the main political parties and an ambitious goal to halt the decline.
  2. Getting the message out – It is unrealistic to expect significant change unless society as a whole understands why physical activity it important, the consequences of inactivity and the minimum people should be aiming for.
  3. Designing physical activity back in to everyday life – This requires public services and the private sector working together to plan and build places that encourage physical activity and cultures that will sustain it.
  4. Making physical activity a lifelong habit – Active children perform better in school and in later life. Fundamental physical literacy must be developed from a young age and consolidated through positive experiences in childhood.
  5. Proving success – Tackling levels of inactivity effectively is hampered by lack of consistent and regular measurement. To evaluate success data on what activities people are doing, how long for and how often is needed.