Physical activity in adults
This report examines physical activity in adults in England in 2016. It reports on adherence to current physical activity guidelines for aerobic activity, muscle-strengthening activity, and, for older people, activities to improve balance and co-ordination. Participation in individual types of leisure physical activity is also shown, as well as occupational activity, and sedentary behaviours.
- 66% of men and 58% of women aged 16 and over over met the aerobic guidelines of at least 150 minutes of moderate activity or 75 minutes of vigorous activity per week or an equivalent combination of both, in bouts of 10 minutes or more.
- Compared with 2012, the proportion of adults aged 16 and over meeting these aerobic activity guidelines was similar for men (67% in 2012) but had increased for women (from 55% in 2012).
- The proportion of adults meeting the aerobic activity guidelines varied by region, being lowest in the West Midlands (53%) and highest in London (65%). The proportion also varied by quintile of the Index of Multiple Deprivation (IMD), ranging from 50% in the most deprived quintile to 68% in the least deprived quintile.
- Adults are also recommended to undertake muscle-strengthening activities on at least two days per week to increase bone strength and muscular fitness. 31% of men and 23% of women aged 16 and over met both the aerobic and muscle-strengthening guidelines.
- Men were more likely than women to spend six or more hours of total sedentary time (time spent watching TV and other sedentary time such as reading and computer use) per weekend day (40% and 35% respectively); however, the equivalent proportion per weekday was the same for men and women (29%).