Health Information

Physical Activity for Kids

The ParticipACTION Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth (2022) found that 72% of Canadian children and youth are NOT meeting the physical activity recommendation of 60 minutes of daily activity, an increase  from the report card released in 2020.

It is important for children and youth to be physically active, and it is important for them to learn how to be physically literate at a young age.

Physical literacy means learning the fundamental movement skills (e.g. run, hop, skip, jump, throw, catch, etc.) as part of healthy growth and development, and having the confidence and motivation to use these skills to be active for life.

Physical activity from a young age helps strengthen bodies and brains, with physically active children testing better in reading, spelling, and math and having improved memory. Regular physical activity in childhood and adolescence also promotes lifelong health and well-being and prevents heart disease, diabetes and poor health later in life.

Being physically active can:

  • Prevent injury and illness
  • Reduce stress, anxiety and depression
  • Improve self-esteem and confidence
  • Improve attention, focus and memory

Help your kids to be more physically active with these tips:

  • Teach your kids basic movement skills when they are young, so they have confidence in their abilities as they get older
  • Provide opportunities for a mixture of structured and unstructured play – when kids learn to explore boundaries and engage in risky play they develop a wider range of tools that will benefit them throughout their life
  • Shut off your screens and play – together!
  • Make simple physical activities part of your routine – walking, running, yoga
  • Join local activity clubs for kids

 Check out the resources below for more tips on how to help your child learn to be physically active for life!

  1. Canadian kids need to move more to boost their brain health: The ParticipACTION Report Card on 2018 Physical Activity for Children and Youth