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Physical Activity Guidelines

What are the guidelines?

Physical activity guidelines provide advice on how much physical activity is generally recommended to realize health benefits.

To help Canadians move towards healthier lifestyles, the Public Health Agency of Canada supported the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP) in reviewing the scientific evidence on physical activity and developing new physical activity guidelines.

National Consultation on Physical Activity Guidelines – Final Report

In fall 2010, the Public Health Agency of Canada conducted a national consultation in support of revisions to the Canadian physical activity guidelines. This included eight face-to-face meetings and an online questionnaire, and ensured a broad perspective from healthy living stakeholders across the country.

The consultations were intended to supplement current evidence with additional expertise and complement the research led by the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology.

A report was produced to highlight the results and key themes emerging from the national consultation process. To receive an electronic copy of this report, please enter your email address below:

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For more information, or if the above information and documents are not accessible to you, please contact

This publication can be made available in alternative formats upon request.

About the new guidelines

CSEP released new physical activity guidelines on January 24, 2011. The guidelines describe the amount and types of physical activity that offer substantial health benefits to children, youth, adults and older adults. The guidelines reflect advances in exercise science and input from experts in the field and align with international guidelines used in other countries.

Canada’s physical activity guides

The previous guidelines were communicated in Canada’s Physical Activity Guides, which were developed by the Government of Canada and the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP) in 1998 (adults), 1999 (older adults) and 2002 (children and youth), based on evidence available at that time.

Canada's Physical Activity Guides are no longer being distributed by the Public Health Agency of Canada. Canadians are encouraged to consult this website as new tools and resources are developed to align with the new recommendations. To obtain the new physical activity guidelines, please visit CSEP's website.

Canada’s physical activity news bulletin

For more information about how the physical activity guidelines were developed, please read the August issue of Canada’s Physical Activity News.