Only about 9 per cent of Canadians aged 5 to 17 get the recommended 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity at least six days a week. Also, many sit in front of screens for much longer than the recommended maximum of two hours per day. Decreasing physical activity and increasing sedentary behaviour are linked to overweight, obesity, and chronic diseases. Therefore, children and youth must increase their physical activity and reduce the time they spend being sedentary.
The authors of this report reviewed school-based interventions that have reduced sedentary behaviour or increased physical activity. They found that integrating programs into school curricula and embedding activity breaks into class time were two of the most effective and cost-efficient interventions. Flexible interventions that involve parents and caregivers, and include a teacher-training component, may have the widest adoption, acceptance, and reach.