Media Releases and Communiques
Australian Health Ministers noted consumer resources to improve physical activity levels in Australia’s children and youth
Australian Health Ministers have noted a package of consumer resources to assist parents, carers and health professionals to understand the importance of, and opportunities for, improving the physical activity levels of children and young people.
28 January 2005
Joint CommuniqueAustralian Health Ministers, meeting in Sydney today, noted a package of consumer resources to assist parents, carers and health professionals to understand the importance of, and opportunities for, improving the physical activity levels of children and young people.
The package consists of three consumer products:
- a brochure for parents and carers of children aged 5-12 years;
- a brochure for young people aged 12-18 years; and
- a poster for children and young people.
Health Ministers endorsed the new Physical Activity Recommendations for Children and Youth in July 2004. The recommendations are that:
- Children and youth should participate in at least 60 minutes of moderate - to - vigorous intensity physical activity every day.
- Children and youth should not spend more than 2 hours per day using electronic media for entertainment (eg computer games, Internet, TV), particularly during daylight hours.
Around 20-25% of Australian children aged 2 to 17 years are overweight or obese, double the prevalence recorded in 1986.
In 2001, only 59.4% of children aged 5-14 years were involved in organised sport outside of school hours. Participation is highest among 9-11 year olds, with boys more likely to participate than girls. Boys average 56 occasions of organised sport over a year, while girls average 52 occasions over a year (average of once per week).
These trends are not uniform across all socio-economic or cultural groups nor geographic locations. Rural Australian children are more likely to participate in organised sport than those who live in a capital city.
Media Contact: Richard O’Leary, Minister Toyne’s Office (08) 8901 4120
Kay McNiece, Dept of Health and Ageing 0412 132 585
Ben Wilson, Minister Iemma’s Office 0407 966 083