When was the last time you exercised? Don’t remember? We’re not surprised, because apparently, not getting enough exercise is more common than you think!
In a recent survey, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has found that four in five adolescents worldwide do not get enough physical activity.
WHO, in its first ever report on global trends for adolescent physical activity, said that this is especially true for girls, and something urgent needs to be done to get teens off their screens and moving more.
“We absolutely need to do more or we will be looking at a very bleak health picture for these adolescents,” said the study’s co-author Leanne Riley, as reported by AFP
Did not meet recommendation
The report, which was published in the Lancet Child & Adolescent Health journal, is based on data from surveys conducted between 2001 and 2016 and involved some 1.6 million students between the ages of 11 and 17 from 146 countries.
The finding concludes that 81 percent did not meet the WHO recommendation of at least an hour a day of physical activity
such as walking, playing, riding a bike or taking part in organised sports.
Riley told the news agency that among the reasons for this poor exercise habit points to “electronic revolution”, which encourages adolescence to sit more and to be less active.
Additionally, poor infrastructure and insecurity makes it difficult for them to walk or bike to school.
Happening all around the world
The study also found that levels of physical inactivity among adolescents were persistently high across all regions and all countries, ranging from 66 percent in Bangladesh to 94 percent in South Korea.
“We find a high prevalence pretty much everywhere,” lead author Regina Guthold told the news agency.
She said that only 15 per cent of adolescent girls worldwide get the prescribed amount of physical activity, compared to 22 per cent for boys.
Guthold said while in a couple of countries this maybe linked to cultural pressure on girls to stay home and avoid sports, as well as concerns over safety when moving about outdoors, a lot of physical activity promotion is more tailored towards boys.
As such, Guthold said that more needs to be done to halt obesity in that particular age group.
You heard it, boys and girls! Time to get moving!