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What is physical activity?

Physical activity is any movement produced by the muscles and requires energy to perform (WHO, 2017). This includes any motion you do throughout the day such as walking or cleaning your house.

Physical activity is different from exercise as exercise is a planned and structured form of activity which is done repeatedly to improve an aspect of health or performance. Other similar terms include fitness (which refers to the condition of the body), and training (the use of exercise to promote fitness or improve performance in a specific sport).

What is sedentary behaviour?

Sedentary behaviour is any waking behaviour that uses very little to no energy to perform in a sitting or lying position. Activities such as reading, watching television and movies, or working on a computer are all sedentary behaviours.

For many people, sedentary behaviour is part of their day. Sitting at work or in school all day, sitting to eat meals, and then relaxing on the couch in the evening to watch TV. Taking short breaks to stand up, walk around and move the body, is helpful.

What is active transportation?

Active transportation refers to any travel that uses self-propelled methods. Things like walking, bicycling, skateboarding, jogging, and rollerblading are all examples of active transportation. They are methods you can use to get from one place to another which requires the use of the body’s muscles and energy.

Active transportation is good for our health, as it is a form of physical activity. Additionally, it’s good for the environment by lowering traffic and the greenhouse gas emitted by vehicles.