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What is Physical Activity?

Physical Activity is movement that allows the body to use energy.  Regular physical activity plays a vital role as a protective and preventative factor for health and well-being and is critical in the reduction and management of Chronic Non-Communicable Disease (NCDs).  Physical Activity is one of the best ‘medicines’ prescribed to help everyone live healthy and long lives.

Benefits of Physical Activity

Lift Your Mood
Boost Brain Strength
Boost Brain Power
Live Longer
Walk Off Allergies

Strengthens heart and lungs

Lowers the risk of heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes

Increases the good cholesterol in the blood

Burns fat and helps to maintain a healthy weight

​​Strengthens bones/reduces osteoporosis

Builds stronger bones and muscles

Increases energy

Physical Activity Recommendations

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for Children

3-5 years – at least 60 minutes of structured activities and several hours of free play daily.

6-17 years – at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity at least 5 days per week.

They should do a combination of muscle-strengthening and bone-strengthening activities at least 3 days per week as a part of the 60 minutes.

Examples of muscle-strengthening activities: Squatspush-ups, sit-ups, lunges, weight lifting, climbing stairs, carrying the groceries and bike riding, monkey bar climbing.

Examples of bone-strengthening activities: Jumping, skipping running, walking, hop-scotch and dancing.

for Adults

Adults should do moderate to vigorous activity at least 5 days per week.

At least 30 minutes 5 days per week to gain some health benefits.

At least 1 hour 5 days per week to lose weight.

At least 90 minutes 5 days per week to lose and maintain healthy weight.

There are a number of ways you can accumulate the recommended amount of physical activity each day/week. For example, a 60-minutes physical activity session can be done in six (6) 10-minutes bouts throughout the day. In order for this to be effective, each 10-minutes bout must be done continuously each time. Choose a method that best fits into your daily routine that you can achieve.

for Adults 65 years and older

Should do at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic physical activity 5 days per week or do at least 25 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity at least 3 days per week.

Aerobic activity should be performed in bouts of at least 10-minutes duration.

For additional health benefits, activity should be done at 60 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic physical activity, 5 days per week or engage in 30 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity 5 days per week. This can be a combination of moderate and vigorous-intensity activity.

If you have a medical condition or have poor mobility, perform physical activity that you can do based on your abilities. Do activities that will improve balance and prevent falls at least 3 days per week.

What Body Type Are You?

Movement in School


Movement in Community

Movement in Workplace


Educational Materials



The materials are meant for public use. Permission is not required for use all Ministry of Health and Wellness services are free to the public. However, the Ministry asks that you do not alter the information in any form and give credit if the information is used or publicly displayed.

Improves posture and balance

Increases strength and flexibility

Reduces strength and flexibility

Improves concentration

Reduces stress

Increases academic performance

Contributes to healthy and glowing skin