Healthy Kids Community Challenge

Movement Guidelines

Children and youth who are overweight or obese are more likely to become obese adults.2 This puts them at a greater risk for developing chronic disease.

Canadian physical activity guidelines recommend that children and youth are physically active for at least 60 minutes every day. Activities with a moderate to vigorous intensity level are ideal (e.g., bike riding, skipping, climbing on playground equipment, or dancing). See the detailed guidelines below:

Ages 0 to 4

Canada just released this fall (2017) the 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for the Early Years (0 – 4 years). These guidelines combine physical activity and sedentary behaviour guidelines into one, and it also includes sleep.

Previously Canada had the physical activity guidelines and sedentary behaviour guidelines for children aged 0-4 years.

Ages 5 to 17

Canada is the first country in the world to develop 24 Hour Movement Guidelines for Children and Youth aged 5-17 years. These guidelines outline what a healthy 24-hour period looks like. They include physical activity, sedentary behaviour, screen time and sleep time recommendations.

The 2016 ParticipACTION Report Card titled “Are Canadian Kids Too Tired to Move?” was released alongside the 24 Hour Movement Guidelines. Adequate sleep is vital to children’s health. Sleep, physical activity and sedentary behaviour are closely interrelated. If children do not get enough sleep they are too tired to be physically active, yet if children are not physically active they are not tired enough to sleep at night. Physical activity is the best sleep aid around!

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