Physical Activity

Benefits of physical activity

Regular exercise has positive effects on many aspects of health and well-being.

Not only can it help maintain and improve general fitness levels, it can also prevent ill-health. It also helps to tackle health problems, such as:

  • Overweight and obesity
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol levels
  • Heart disease and angina
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Joint and bone problems.

It is recognised that physical inactivity is one of a range of risk factors involved with the conditions above.

Activity can reduce the risk of developing some cancers, stroke, heart disease and osteoporosis.

Psychological benefits

Physical Activity can:

  • Provide relief from symptoms of depression and anxiety
  • Enhance and protect brain function
  • Improve self-confidence
  • Increase social interaction

Improve independence and mobility in later life.

Recommended levels of activity

Under 5's Walking & Non-walking

5-18 year olds

19-64 years

65 and over

If you have a disability

If you are an adult with a disability, regular physical activity can provide you with important health benefits, such as a stronger heart, lungs and muscles, improved mental health, and a better ability to do everyday tasks. It's best to talk with your healthcare provider before you begin a physical activity routine.

Try to get advice from a professional with experience in physical activity and disability. They can tell you more about the amounts and types of physical activity that are appropriate for you and your abilities.

Individual physical and mental capabilities should be considered when interpreting the guidelines. This list is not exhaustive, and you need to take into consideration the person's own development when choosing a relevant activity.

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