Editorials

Physical activity and health

BMJ 2007; 334 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.39225.414537.80 (Published 07 June 2007) Cite this as: BMJ 2007;334:1173
  1. Lars Bo Andersen, professor
  1. Norwegian School of Sport Sciences, Department of Sports Medicine, Box 4014, 0806, Oslo, Norway
  1. Lars.bo.andersen{at}nih.no

    Even low intensity exercise such as walking is associated with better health

    Evidence that physical activity improves health is convincing,1 but we lack knowledge about how to increase physical activity in individuals and populations. Taking part in sport may improve health, but sport is only taken up by a small proportion of the adult population, and mainly by the better educated.

    In this week's BMJ, a systematic review by Ogilvie and colleagues assesses the effect of interventions to improve walking on how much people walk, physical activity, fitness, disease risk factors, and wellbeing.2 It found that interventions tailored to people's needs, which targeted the most sedentary or those motivated to change, can increase walking by up to 30-60 minutes each week. Few studies included …

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