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anses

French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Health & Safety

Get moving at home! Regular physical activity helps improve your health

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News of 19/03/2020

During this period of lockdown due to the current unprecedented health crisis in the country, it is essential to keep up regular physical activity in your home. Aerobic exercises, muscle strengthening, relaxation: all these forms of daily physical activity can be practised at home using the means available (a chair, filled water bottles, etc.) and will help improve your health.

The positive effects of physical activity in the prevention of chronic diseases have now been clearly established. Nevertheless, the studies currently available show that regardless of the age group, the population is not getting enough physical activity.

In addition, sedentary behaviour, the time spent sitting in front of a screen (television, video games, computer), remains too high. According to ANSES’s Third Individual and National Survey on Food Consumption (INCA 3), only a third of adolescents aged 11 to 17 years engage in at least 60 minutes a day of physical activity, and only 63% of adults aged 18 to 79 years are physically active for at least 150 minutes a week, as recommended by ANSES and the WHO.

Engaging in physical activity also improves the quality and increases the quantity of sleep. The positive effects on sleep appear from when you begin the physical activity and become long-lasting when it is regular.

In view of these findings, ANSES recommends:

  • encouraging the practice of the three different types of physical activity (aerobic, muscle strengthening, flexibility);
  • encouraging a reduction in sedentary behaviour, by decreasing the total time spent sitting on a daily basis and interrupting extended periods of inactivity with active breaks;
  • promoting physical activity and a reduction of sedentary behaviour in general.

Read our article More physical exercise and less of a sedentary lifestyle for better health, which includes a series of recommendations on exercises adapted and accessible to everyone.