Health focus: Four in five people not active enough

People are being encouraged to do more exercise
People are being encouraged to do more exercise
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Health chiefs are urging people to make sure they exercise after it was revealed only 20% of Bucks adults do enough to stay fit and healthy.

According to the county council’s Joint Strategic Needs Assessment, 27% of people are completely inactive, doing less than 30 minutes of exercise a week.

The result of this is a £6.3 million annual strain on the county’s healthcare services, with a range of conditions including heart disease, hip fractures and some cancers linked to inactivity.

Among Bucks school children aged five to 18, the latest figures show only 54%are doing three or more hours of PE or sport a week. There has also been little change in the level of physical activity by adults since 2005.

To try and get more people active, the council is promoting a range of schemes, including a ‘Give It A Go’ month in September which will include sport courses and taster sessions for all ages.

Tracey Ironmonger, the council’s deputy director of public health, said: “Not only is physical activity an excellent way to maintain your health throughout life, but it’s a real boost to your wellbeing to find an everyday activity or a sport that you really enjoy. It makes you feel good, get fitter and can be very sociable.

“We all need to move a little more, whether that’s through walking, cycling, gardening, dancing or a new sport. Find something that suits you.”

More on the council report in next week’s paper.