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Physical Activity

Physical activity plays an important role in the health, well-being and quality of life of Canadians. People who are physically active live longer, healthier lives. Active people are more productive, and more likely to avoid illness and injury.

Benefits of physical activity

Physical activity helps:

  • healthy growth and development  
  • prevent chronic diseases like cancer, Type 2 diabetes and heart disease
  • make us stronger
  • give us energy
  • decrease stress, and
  • prolong independence as we get older.

Learn more about the benefits of physical activity.

Physical activity guidelines

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

Canada's Physical Activity Guides, which were based on the previous guidelines, are no longer being distributed by the Public Health Agency of Canada. Canadians are encouraged to refer to our Get Active Tip Sheets for the latest information on physical activity. For more information or tips to get moving, please visit CSEP External link or ParticipACTION. External link

Tips to Get Active

Being active doesn’t have to be difficult. There are many ways to make physical activity a part of daily life — at home, at school, at work, at play, and on the way.

Getting started is easier than you think. Start now and slowly increase your physical activity to meet the new recommendations. They can be met through planned exercise sessions, active forms of transportation like walking or biking, as well as recreation and sports.

For tips and information to help 1) children, 2) youth, 3) adults and 4) older adults build physical activity into a healthy lifestyle, read our Get Active Tip Sheets. NEW