May 21, 2014
Australian children are among the least active in the world despite high sports attendance, according to new research.
The Active Healthy Kids Australia Report Card, produced by a collaboration of universities, has today rated the overall physical activity of Australian children as a D-, just above a fail.
The report drew information from a sample pool of about 33,000 children from five different surveys across the country.
It found 80 per cent of five to 17 year-olds were not getting daily exercise despite the fact 64 to 85 per cent of Australian children played organised sport.
Those who participated in organised sport solely only got about five hours of exercise a week between training and matches, which is below the recommended level of one hour of moderate exercise each day.
The report also concluded most children exceed the recommended screen viewing time for their age group.
Kidsz n’ Sport Canning Vale organiser Brent Dawkins agreed screen time was a problem.
“With increases in technology, things like computers and iPads, it’s not surprising,” he said.
“Hopefully with the report and organisations like ourselves, the more we can encourage kids.”
According to the report, walking and cycling took up only 12 per cent of a child’s active time.
Mr Dawkins said it was unfortunate children did not ride and walk as much as they used to but said he recognised that was not always an option when both parents worked.
“Parents play a big role,” he said.
Home page photo: Abbey Donaldson