The Importance of Physical Activity for Adults

For adults aged 18 to 60, physical activity and recreation, travel (eg walking or cycling), occupational, household chores, playing activities, sports or planned exercise all contribute to the development of good habits and health.

There are many benefits of physical activity like improving your cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength and bone health as well as reducing the risk of depression.

  • Adults aged 18 to 60 should exercise for at least 150 minutes per week doing a moderate-intensity endurance activity or at least 75 minutes of intense activity, or a combination equivalent of moderate intensity and sustained activity.
  • Endurance activities should be performed for a duration of at least 10 minutes.
  • Muscle strengthening weight lifting involving the major muscle groups should be practiced at least two days a week as well.

These recommendations mainly apply to adults with disabilities. But it may be necessary to make adjustments based on capacity, risks and limitations of each person.

We can accumulate 150 minutes of physical activity per week in different ways.

The concept of increasing duration aims to reach the goal of 150 minutes of weekly physical activity by doing several shorter activities –At least 10 minutes spread over a week, the principle is to add onto the time spent on each activity, eg.30 minutes of moderate intensity activity 5 times a week.

Pregnant women or women who have just given birth and people with heart disease should take extra precautions and seek medical advice before trying to reach the recommended levels of physical activity for this age group.

Sedentary adults or people limited by certain diseases will see their health improve if they pass the “inactivity” to a high level of physical activity. The adults who do not reach recommended levels of physical activity should make sure to increase the duration, frequency and finally intensity with the aim of achieving it.

Overall, all evidence suggests that adult men and women who exercise are better off than more sedentary individuals.