Study: Most Adults Don’t Get Enough Exercise

In a recent US government study it was found that less than 23% of U.S. adults aged 18–64 met guidelines for both aerobic and muscle-strengthening activities. [1]

These findings are of concern because regular participation in physical activity lowers the risk of many chronic conditions, disability, and mortality.

What are these guideline recommendations?

Specifically, adults should perform at least 150 minutes per week of moderate physical activity, or 75 minutes per week of vigorous physical activity, in addition to muscle-strengthening activities 2 or more days per week. [2]

State variation in meeting the 2008 federal guidelines for both aerobic and muscle-strengthening activities through leisure-time physical activity among adults aged 18–64: United States 2010–2015

The study was conducted over a number of years, and found variations including differences between states, age groups, and sex.

  • Men were more likely to meet the activity requirements. The national average was 27.2% for men but only 18.7% of women.
  • Adults of working age were more likely to meet the activity requirements, as compared to those of non-working age.
  • There were significant variations by state. As an example, 31.5% of adults in Colorado met the guidelines, while only 13.5% of adults in Mississippi did.

In Summary

Most adults in the US don’t get enough physical activity to meet current health guidelines.

We recommend finding an exercise program that works for your schedule.

Sources

1. Blackwell DL, Clarke TC. State variation in meeting the 2008 federal guidelines for both aerobic and muscle-strengthening activities through leisure-time physical activity among adults aged 18–64: United States 2010–2015. National Health Statistics Reports; no 112. Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics. 2018.

2. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans. Available from: http://www.health.gov/PAGuidelines/

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