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Physical activity

Physical activity essential for good health
Sufficient physical activity is important for health: it improves the condition of the body and helps protect against various diseases. To determine if people have sufficient physical activity, guidelines have been set for children and adults: the Dutch Physical Activity Guideline (Nederlandse Norm Gezond Bewegen). These guidelines include criteria for aspects as the duration, intensity, and frequency of physical activity.

How much physical activity is required for good health?
For children to be in good health, they need to be physically active at a medium intensive level for at least 60 minutes every day. Physical activity at a medium intensive level causes your heart beat and breathing to become faster. Examples include sports, walking at a brisk pace, pushing the bicycle pedals slightly harder than normal, or running with the dog. Adults are recommended to be physically active at a medium intensive level for 30 minutes at least five days per week.

In addition to the physical activity guidelines there is a fit guideline, which is intended to keep people physically fit. Physical fitness includes endurance and strength, for instance. The fit guideline recommends physical activity at an intensive level at least three times per week for at least 20 minutes. Intensive physical activity involves sweating and getting out of breath (Rijksinstituut voor Volksgezondheid en Milieu, RIVM – National Institute for Public Health and the Environment – 2015).

Read more about this subject by clicking on the categories 'Children', 'Youngsters' and 'Adults'.