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Developing a standardised physical activity and sport monitoring system for Europe

Last Updated: 3/12/2018

On 18–19 January the European Union Physical Activity and Sport Monitoring System (EUPASMOS) project was launched in Budapest, Hungary. The project aims to establish a standardised system to monitor physical activity levels and sport participation across Europe. Following the initial work of a coordination team project participants are now collaborating to achieve the ambitious goal of a valid and reliable system to monitor physical activity and sport across Europe. A standard monitoring system will provide better information for countries to evaluate physical activity policies and strategies and enable more accurate comparisons of physical activity and sports participation between countries. This system will benefit all countries in the WHO European Region through the development and dissemination of a toolkit to help countries to implement a standardised system of monitoring and surveillance. Read more here:

policy consultation

A healthier future - action and ambitions on diet, activity and healthy weight

Last Updated: 3/12/2018

The Scottish Government have published the responses to the consultation on the Diet and Obesity Strategy consultation which can be read in full here:

survey data

79% of Scottish Adults take part in physical activity

Last Updated: 10/10/2017

Headline findings from the Scottish Household Survey reveal that in 2016, 79% of adults had taken part in physical activity and sport in the previous four weeks. The rise in physical activity is driven by the rise in recreational walking. Participation in all physical activity and sport remained relatively stable between 2007 and 2010 but recently people have become more active. The Scottish Household Survey (SHS) is a continuous survey based on a random sample of the general population in private residences in Scotland. Questions are asked face-to-face by an interviewer in homes all over Scotland. Read more below:

policy consultation

Sport for everyone - Consultation phase 2

Last Updated: 6/26/2017

A call has been made for written views by the Scottish Parliament and Health and Sport Committee as part of phase 2 of its Sport for Everyone Inquiry. The Committee is keen to receive responses which focus on grassroots sport and the importance of developing strategies to remove barriers to participation. It is also interested in hearing views on how Scotland might increase sport and physical activity participation rates across all groups and sectors of society. Responses could address the following questions: 1. Can you provide examples where a community-based approach has been successful in removing barriers to participation in sport and physical activity? 2. What were the key ingredients to that success? 3. Were there any approaches that were particularly successful in increasing participation among certain social groups, like women, ethnic minorities, certain age-groups? 4.To what extent are these approaches unique to a particular area and set of circumstances, or replicable in other parts of the country? The call for views will close on 30 June. Read more below:


Sit Less, Move More, Sleep Well: Active Play Guidelines for under fives

Last Updated: 6/26/2017

New Zealand has released new guidelines Sit Less, Move More, Sleep Well: Active play guidelines for under-fives. These guidelines provide population health advice to support practitioners, early childhood educators, regional sports trusts and others who provide advice to parents, care givers or families on physical activity for children under five years of age. The guidelines include discouraging screen time for children under two and limiting screen time to less than one hour every day for children aged two and over, providing regular activity breaks to limit the amount of time a child spends sitting and plenty of opportunities for active play The full article can be accessed below:


Sport for Everyone - Health and Sport Committee inquiry

Last Updated: 2/17/2017

The Health and Sport Committee at the Scottish Parliament launched a survey looking at sport and physical activity in Scotland. People were invited to take part in a short survey on sport participation. The committee wanted to hear views on why people do/do not participate in sport or physical activity. The work is being done to examine the recent progress on sport participation in Scotland and to inform recommendations to ensure the Commonwealth Games legacy continues over the medium to long term.


Keep active to beat the ‘January Blues’

Last Updated: 2/17/2017

The Tesco National Charity Partnership is calling on people to be active to beat the January Blues by using its online motivational tool to get active. The partnership commissioned a survey which found: •eighty-two percent of UK adults report feeling down in January, with many attributing these feelings to dark nights, lack of money and cold weather •three in ten say going for a walk or a jog helps improve their mood, but only 14 per cent actually do it •nearly two-thirds of respondents (64 per cent) said they would like to find more time to exercise •nine in ten people agree that being active can help to reduce their risk of type 2 diabetes and heart and circulatory disease, but almost half (46 per cent) admit they lacked motivation. •adults reported spending an average of 88 minutes a week on moderate exercise such as walking or cycling. The National Charity Partnership’s online goal setter allows people to set and monitor their health-related targets and encourages them to keep going and achieve their goals.


Weekend warriors’ still get important health benefits

Last Updated: 2/17/2017

New research from Loughborough University, University of Leicester and University College London, has found that people who cram all of their weekly exercise into one or two sessions, eg, at the weekend have a reduced risk of death from any cause of cardiovascular disease. The study included data from 63,591 participants, which was taken from the Health Survey for England and the Scottish Health Survey between 1994 and 2012. Participants' activity levels were classified as inactive, sufficiently active, weekend warriors or regularly active. Researchers examined the association between their physical activity patterns and the risk of death, cardiovascular disease and cancer. Compared with the inactive group, all groups saw a reduction in risk of death and cardiovascular disease. The researchers conclude that: “Weekend warrior and other leisure time physical activity patterns characterised by one or two sessions per week may be sufficient to reduce all-case, cardiovascular and cancer mortality risks regardless of adherence to prevailing physical activity guidelines”. The full journal article can be accessed below:


Sport for Everyone Inquiry - Survey

Last Updated: 1/16/2017

The Health and Sport Committee has today launched an inquiry looking at participation in sport in Scotland. The remit for this work is: to consider the degree of progress made in recent years around access to, and participation in, sport in Scotland. To make recommendations in ensuring that the Commonwealth Games "Active Legacy" aims of increasing access to and participation in sport continue over the medium to long term. As part of the inquiry, a short survey has also been launched on sport participation which only takes a couple of minutes to complete. The survey will run until 7th February 2017 and can be accessed from the link below:

action plan

Scottish Health and Social Care Plan

Last Updated: 1/10/2017

The Scottish Government has published its Health and Social Care Delivery Plan which emphasises an approach based on anticipation, prevention and self-management through creating a culture where health behaviours are the norm. In 2017, a new delivery plan will aim to reduce inequalities in physical activity across Scotland. In 2019, an NHS Physical Activity pathway will be embedded in all appropriate clinical settings to ensure that hospitals routinely support staff and patients to be more active, in schools to create quality activity opportunities and in the community through the delivery of 200 Community Sports Hubs. The full delivery plan can be accessed from the link below:


Interactive body map: physical inactivity and the risk to your health

Last Updated: 1/10/2017

A new interactive body map brings together scientific evidence on the links between a lack of physical activity and risk of disease. The map allows users to click on coloured dots around the human body to reveal the risk posed by inactivity. For example, clicking on the lungs reveals that there is a 35% higher risk of getting lung cancer if you are physically inactive. You can also filter by disease or condition type. The full interactive map can be downloaded below:

research review

Sport participation continues to rise

Last Updated: 1/10/2017

The latest figures from the Active People Survey (APS) in England 10 (October 2015-September 2016) reveal that sport participation continues an upward trend, with 15.97 million people (aged 16+) playing sport at least once a week. This is an increase of approximately 230,000 since 12 months ago and 1.9 million since the first APS in 2005/06. A demographic breakdown reveals an increase in the number of women playing sport and getting active with more than 7.2 million women regularly taking part in sport and physical activity. This has narrowed the gender gap, which once stood at over two million to 1.55 million. Going to the gym and keep fit sessions remain popular with exercise classes, eg, spinning, pilates and boxercise continuing to attract large numbers of people. Swimming is still the most popular sport, followed by athletics, cycling and football. Full statistics can be downloaded below:


Let’s get moving

Last Updated: 12/19/2016

A new campaign from Age Scotland to inspire and help older adults to keep active with age. The aim of Let’s Get Moving is to raise awareness of the importance of physical activity and exercise and encourage older people to build this into their daily lives, especially if they aren’t currently active. Age Scotland is planning some ‘challenge’ events to inspire older adults to get active, the first of which is The Coastline Challenge. Older adults are encouraged to get involved individually or in groups to pick a piece of the Scottish Coastline and cover the distance in any way possible – either through walking, jogging, dancing or cycling. Age Scotland is trying to reach a total of 6,160 miles.


BBC Make Your Move

Last Updated: 2/16/2016

Ahead of the Rio Olympics this summer, BBC Get Inspired are launching ‘Make Your Move’ – a campaign promoting accessible, physical challenges for everyone.


Parliamentary Motion: Addressing Sedentary Behaviour in Older People

Last Updated: 1/8/2016

The following Motion (S4M-15125) was lodged in the Scottish Parliament by Margaret McCulloch MSP, Central Scotland, Scottish Labour on 9 December 2015.


Inactivity costs Europe over €80 billion

Last Updated: 7/29/2015

The total cost to Europe’s economy from inactivity is estimated to be €80.4 billion per year.


Switching to Active Travel Reduces BMI

Last Updated: 6/15/2015

Research published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health has concluded that switching from car use to active travel reduces Body Mass Index (BMI).


Physical Activity Associated with Mortality

Last Updated: 5/19/2015

Increases in physical activity is as important as smoking cessation for reduction in total mortality in elderly men according to the Oslo II study.


Inactive children 'become middle-aged couch potatoes'

Last Updated: 3/20/2015

More inactive children evidence building on that of the British Cohort Study


Scotland’s Royal Colleges come together to call for inactivity to be treated as seriously as smoking

Last Updated: 1/30/2015

Fifteen medical organisations in Scotland including physicians, surgeons, psychiatrists, dentists, anaesthetists and GPs have joined forces as the Scottish Academy of Medic Royal Colleges and Faculties to publish a report calling for radical action to improve levels of physical activity.

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