Regular physical activity is important for optimal health and in helping reduce the risk for chronic disease. Some of the benefits include:
- Controlling your weight
- Dealing with stress
- Feeling better and thinking more clearly
- Building strong muscles and bones
- Lowering your risk for heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, diabetes, and some cancers
- Preventing falls for older adults
Adults need at least 150 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity, or 75 minutes of vigorous physical activity a week. You can break up your activity into 10-minute workouts throughout the week.
It’s important to take time to strengthen your bones and muscles, too. Adults should aim to do muscle-building activities at least two days per week. These activities include lifting weights, using resistance bands, pushups, squats, yoga, or heavy gardening (such as digging and shoveling).
Children need at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day to stay healthy and build strong muscles and bones. Physical activity also improves school performance and contributes to children being more attentive in class.
For more information and tips on physical activity for both kids and adults, visit Mass in Motion at www.mass.gov/massinmotion.
To download materials on healthy eating and physical activity, visit the Massachusetts Health Promotion Clearinghouse at www.maclearinghouse.com.
- Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- National Society of Physical Activity Practitioners in Public Health www.nspapph.org
- National Physical Activity Plan
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