General Health and Wellness

Physical Activity

Children (6-17 years old)

  • Children and adolescents should do 60 minutes (1 hour) or more of physical activity each day
  • Incorporate some of each of the 3 categories:
    • Aerobic activity
      • Should make up most of your child's 60 minutes or more per day
      • This includes either moderate intensity aerobic activity such as brisk walking, or vigorous intensity activity such as runrung
      • Be sure to include vigorous intensity aerobic activity on at least 3 days per week
    • Muscle strengthening
      • Examples include gymnastics or push ups
      • Should be incorporated at least 3 days per week as part of the 60 or more minutes of exercise
    • Bone strengthening
      • Examples include jump rope or running
      • Should be incorporated at least 3 days per week as part of the 60 or more minutes of exercise
  • "Age Appropriate"
    • Children do not usually need formal muscle strengthening programs, such as weight lifting
    • Young children usually strengthen their muscles with activities like gymnastics, playing on the jungle gym or climbing trees
  • Adolescents may begin formal weight programs
    • Other activities with weight lifting may include football or basketball team practice (organized sports)
  • Moderate Vs. Vigorous Intensity
    • Rule of thumb: from 0-10, 0 is sitting and 10 is a high level of activity
    • Moderate is a 5-6 where the child breathes heavier than normal
    • Vigorous is a 7-8 where the heart beats much fasters and the child breathes a lot heavier than normal

Adults (18-64 years old)

  • 2 hours and 30 minutes (150 minutes) of moderate intensity activity (brisk walking) every week AND muscle strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week that will work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulder and arms)

OR

  • 1 hour and 15 minutes (75 minutes) of vigorous intensity aerobic activity (jogging/ running) every week AND muscle strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week that will work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulder and arms)

OR

  • An equal mix of moderate and vigorous aerobic activity AND muscle strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week that will work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulder and arms)
  • Muscle strengthening is a part of all 3 options**
  • To split up the time you should perform at least 10 minutes of exercise and ramp yourself up as tolerated
    • Greater health benefits occur with 5 hours of moderate level or 2 hours and 30 minutes of vigorous l evel aerobic activity plus strength training is performed
  • Moderate intensity aerobic activity include:
    • Walking fast, doing water aerobics, riding a bike on ground level or with a few hills, playing · doubles tennis, pushing a lawn mower
    • Moderate exercise should cause your heart rate to increase a little and for you to sweat
  • Vigorous intensity aerobic activity include: o Jogging or running, swimming laps, riding a bike fast or on hills, playing singles tennis, playing basketball
    • You should be breathing hard and fast, heart rate is increased a lot
    • Rule of thumb: 1 minute of vigorous intensity activity is equivalent to 2 minutes of moderate intensity activities

Older Adults (65 or older)

  • 2 hours and 30 minutes (150 minutes) of moderate intensity activity (brisk walking) every week AND muscle strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week that will work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back , abdomen, chest, shoulder and arms)

OR

  • 1 hour and 15 minutes (75 minutes) of vigorous intensity aerobic activity jogging/ running) every week AND muscle strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week that will work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulder and arms)

OR

  • An equal mix of moderate and vigorous aerobic activity AND muscle strength ening activities on 2 or more days a week that will work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulder and arms)
  • Muscle strengthening is a part of all 3 options**
  • To split up the time you should perform at least 10 minutes of exercise and ramp yourself up as tolerated
    • Greater health benefits occur with 5 hours of moderate level or 2 hours and 30 minutes of vigorous level aerobic activity plus strength training is performed
  • Different muscle strengthening activities include: lifting weights, working with resistance bands, doing exercises that use your body weight (push ups, sit ups), heavy gardening (digging, shoveling), and yoga
    • If lifting weights try to do 8-12 repetitions 2-3 times and increase the weight as tolerated

References