More than 1 in 3 Belgians don’t get enough exercise

According to figures from the World Health Organisation (WHO) that appear in the latest edition of the scientific journal 'The Lancet Global Health' one in four people in the world don’t get enough exercise. In Belgium the figures are even higher with one in three people here not exercising enough.

Four WHO researchers look at how much physical activity people were getting in countries across the globe. The general picture the world over is that we aren’t getting enough physical activity. Surprisingly perhaps is that men are generally more physically active than women.

There are big regional differences. However, generally speaking those living in richer countries are less physically active than those living in poorer countries. The least active region in the world is Latin America, while the most active in Oceania. Kuwait is the world’s least physically active country, while those living in Uganda, Moldova and Jordan are the most physically active.     

The researchers define insufficient exercise as less than 150 minutes intensive or 75 minutes intense physical activity per week.

In Belgium more than one in three people don’t meet these criteria. Of our neighbouring countries only Germany and to a lesser extent the UK does worse. Here woman do better than men with just in four women in Belgium not getting enough physical exercise as opposed to 1 in 3 men

Globally the figures have remained the same since 2001. However, they are still rising in Western countries.

The WHO advises us all to engage more in physical activity. Exercise can help prevent health issues such as heart disease, cancer and diabetes. The World Health Organisation calls on governments to encourage people to exercise more.   

Click her to read the The Lancet Global Health article in full.