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Youth Physical Activity Guidelines

Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, 2nd edition

The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, 2nd edition [PDF – 13.5 MB], issued by the US Department of Health and Human Services, recommend that children and adolescents ages 6 to 17 years  do 60 minutes (1 hour) or more of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity daily.1 Regular physical activity in childhood and adolescence is important for promoting lifelong health and well-being and preventing various health conditions like heart disease, cancer, and type 2 diabetes.


Youth Physical Activity Guidelines

  • Children and adolescents should do 60 minutes (1 hour) or more of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity daily.
    • Aerobic: Most of the 60 or more minutes a day should be either moderate- or vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity and should include vigorous-intensity physical activity at least 3 days a week.
    • Muscle-strengthening: As part of their 60 or more minutes of daily physical activity, children and adolescents should include muscle-strengthening physical activity on at least 3 days of the week.
    • Bone-strengthening: As part of their 60 or more minutes of daily physical activity, children and adolescents should include bone-strengthening physical activity on at least 3 days of the week.
  • It is important to provide young people opportunities and encouragement to participate in physical activities that are appropriate for their age, that are enjoyable, and that offer variety. See Chapter 3 of the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, 2nd edition.

References

1. US Department of Health and Human Services. Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, 2nd edition. Washington, DC: US Department of Health and Human Services; 2018.

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