Physical Inactivity and Sedentary Behaviour 

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Physical Inactivity

Following the recommended guidelines* of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity & 2 or more days of strength activities per week is proven to help reduce your risk of heart and circulatory diseases.  It can also help you maintain a healthy weight and reduce your blood pressure and cholesterol.

  • Physical Inactivity is responsible for 5 million deaths worldwide
  • 20 million UK Adults are insufficiently active (11.8 million are women) which is putting them at a significantly greater risk of heart and circulatory disease, and premature death.

Sedentary Behaviour

Being sedentary means your energy expenditure is very low and your most frequent posture is sitting or lying down: sitting at work/school/home, watching TV, computer/video games, reading, travelling by car/bus. 
(Does not include sleeping or pushing yourself in a wheelchair).

Regardless of activity levels, sedentary behaviour results in poor cardiovascular health. Inactivity can lead to fatty material building up in your arteries; if the arteries carrying blood to your heart get damaged and clogged it can lead to a heart attack; if the arteries carrying blood to your brain get damaged and logged it can lead to a stroke. 

Physical Inactivity + Sedentary Behaviour = increased risk of heart disease and circulatory disorders

Heart and Circulatory Disease causes over a 1/4 of all deaths in the UK

How to be less Sedentary during your day – a few ideas

  • Break up periods of sitting, ideally 5 mins every 1/2 hour.
  • At work: stand up when making phone calls; elevate your PC/laptop so you need to stand up whilst working; replace your chair with a Swiss ball; walk to speak to colleagues rather than email/phone.
  • At home: set an alarm and move every half hour; try a few minutes of heart raising exercises such as running up the stairs, skipping, jogging on the spot; dancing around, or practising a few balance or yoga poses.  *see PHA exercise guidelines

What does ‘Wellbeing’ mean?

Physical Activity Guidelines (65+)