Are you Getting Enough?
Less than 20% of the Australian population are regularly active at a sufficient level to meet their preventative health needs.
The increase in technology such as cars, remote controls, mobile phones, computers, escalators and elevators and all the other labour saving devices have virtually removed all physical exertion from our life’s. The human body was designed to move and move other objects, not just sit and push buttons. As a result of our sedentary lifestyles this increasing inactivity is responsible for many premature deaths associated with poor health and weight gain.
The National Physical Activities Guidelines have been developed to guide people to participate in the minimal amount of physical activity to promote good health and a healthy body weight.
1. Think of movement as an opportunity, not an inconvenience.
Because of the increase in modern technology it is now important to think of movement as an opportunity to make up for what technology has taken away. We need physical activity to stay healthy and functional. So instead of taking the lift take the stairs, walk to near by shops, walk the dog, play with your children instead of letting them spend hours in front of the television or computer. There are countless ways that we can all incorporate more physical activities back into our lives.
2. Be active every day in as many ways as you can.
Even small increases in physical activity can have a positive effect on our health and wellbeing. Mowing your own lawn or washing your own car instead of paying someone else to do it will have positive benefits for you.
Doing your own house work; all of these little things that many of us now take for granted will go a long way to improving the health of the nation.
3. Put together at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity on most, preferably all, days.
We now know that physical activity is accumulative. You can either do it all in one hit or in minimal 10 minutes blocks through out the day. Recent research has shown that the effects of accumulative exercise can be just as effective for improvements in health and weight control. Moderate intensity activity will cause a slight, but noticeable, increase in breathing and heart rate. Good examples include brisk walking, cycling, mowing the lawn, digging in the garden, medium-paced swimming etc. It’s important to remember that the 30 minutes a day is the minimal amount.
4. If you can also enjoy some regular,vigorous activity for extra health and fitness
This guideline adds an extra level for those adults who wish to achieve greater health and fitness levels. The benefits include extra protection against heart disease. Vigorous implies, activities which make you huff and puff. In technical terms you are exercising at a heart rate of 70-85% of your maximum heart rate. This type of activity should be carried out for a minimum of 30 minutes on 3 to 4 days per week. It is recommended that medical advice is required for those who have been inactive for some time, have heart disease or a family history of heart disease, or have any other major health problem.