Infographic: physical activity benefits for adults and older adults

Hamish Reid, Charlie Foster

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorial (Academic Journal)


Over one third of the UK's adult population fail to meet the Chief Medical Officers' (CMOs') recommended physical activity (PA) guidelines for health.1 Knowledge of the CMOs' PA recommendations is low amongst healthcare workers2 despite physical inactivity being the most prevalent risk factor for non-communicable disease, which accounts for 80% of deaths in the UK.3 Without this fundamental knowledge, healthcare workers remain inadequately prepared to deliver effective PA advice.

This infographic is the first in a series of three published by the four UK CMOs (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) to make their PA recommendations simpler both for healthcare workers to use and for the public to understand. The CMOs created an expert PA committee, with a range of clinical, academic and communications expertise, to develop this infographic, which is designed to facilitate effective PA counselling and aid consultation between healthcare workers and adults and older adults. It may also be used as a stand-alone resource in poster, leaflet or electronic form in healthcare and other settings.

Guidelines provide an important benchmark for clinical care, informing best practice, providing message continuity, stimulating behaviour change and facilitating targets and surveillance. Whilst knowledge of the PA guidelines remains low, the healthcare sector will not be able to play its vital part in reversing the current trend toward physical inactivity.

We urge all readers to widely share the information contained in this infographic (twitter, Facebook, use as PowerPoint slides, print out) and strive to educate and empower all adults and older adults to achieve the CMOs physical activity recommendations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1441-1442
Number of pages1
JournalBritish Journal of Sports Medicine
Issue number51
Early online date18 Sep 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2017

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