Study: Australian Kids Are Among the Least Active in the World

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Study: Australian Kids Are Among the Least Active in the World

A new report has revealed that screen time is taking over outdoor play making Australian kids the least active in the world.

The study published in the Journal Physical Activity and Health showed that Australia ranked 21 out of 38 countries for physical activity requirements in children, making them among the least active in the world.

The University of South Australia study says less than 1 in 5 Australian children, aged between five and 17 years, meet the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity each day. A fewer than one in four grade six children had also enjoyed physical milestones like catching, throwing, sprinting, jumping and side galloping, while almost two in three Aussie kids are involved in organised sport but fewer than half walk or ride to school.

Study: Australian Kids Are Among the Least Active in the World | Stay at Home Mum

The study also found that only one in four toddlers spend less than an hour a day on screens, and around one in four kids aged 5-17 limit their screen time to less than two hours a day, but it gets worse as they get older with just 14 per cent of 12 to 17-year-olds meeting the guidelines.

The Herald Sun reported that this has given the country a D-minus rating for children meeting daily activity requirements.

Researcher Dr Natasha Schranz said the results revealed that Australia’s society had now fewer opportunities for free or unstructured play, so children had less opportunities to acquire the necessary skills, confidence and motivation to be physically active. She told the Herald Sun that children needed to be taught how to build more activity into their day.

The 2016 Physical Activity Report Card is part of a global network, which includes 38 countries all reporting on the physical activity levels of their nation’s children presented in Bangkok. In the report, children in New Zealand, Slovenia, Mexico Brazil and Botswana were more active than Australians.


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