Update you on Interesting Data Recently Released:

The Lancet published the following article on September 4, 2018:

Worldwide trends in insufficient physical activity from 2001 to 2016: a pooled analysis of 358 population-based surveys with 1·9 million participants

Regina Guthold, Gretchen A Stevens, Leanne M Riley, Fiona C Bull

Points of interest:

  • Globally, the progress towards achieving a target of 10% relative reduction of insufficient physical activity has been too slow
  • When data from countries is combined, inactivity has worsened in high-income western countries
  • In a related CNN article, researchers who were interviewed emphasized the importance of creating supportive environments and emphasizing activities that can be easily integrated in the day (e.g. taking stairs)

Also on September 4, 2018, Scotland released the results of the  2017 Scottish Household Survey.

Points of Interest

  • participation in physical activity has improved in Scotland.
  • this increase in overall participation in physical activity has been driven by increases in walking
  • this applied to all measured age groups (16years – 60+)
  • Walking has been a priority focus area in this country
  • Walking helped to decrease differences in PA participation related to education level and for those living in deprived areas – although there were still significant differences in PA participation for these groups
  • Over time, the PA participation gap between those living in most deprived and least deprived areas decreased related to participation in walking

Elaine Shelton

Manager of Physical Activity

Communities, Sport and Recreation Division – Communities, Culture and Heritage

902-424-7629  (P)


Let’s Get Moving: A common vision for physical activity in Canada, which links existing efforts in recreation, sport, physical activity and health was drafted and shared with Ministers for Physical Activity, Sport and Recreation in July.  Ministers acknowledged the importance of the common vision and asked that work continue with a view to ensuring that indigenous perspectives were reflected.  A final document is expected later in this fiscal year.

The 2018 Active Living Research Conference will be held in Banff from February 11 to 14th, 2018.  The conference theme is “Future-Proofing Activity:  Application Across Sectors”.


Walk 21 was held last month in Calgary.  Conference conclusions reinforced the importance of the built environment and maintaining it during the winter, the contributions walkable communities can make to the economy, the relationship to equity and the value of walking/walkable communities in facilitating social networks, combatting loneliness and for culture and community building.

October is International Walk to School Month.  Support resources are available through the Ecology Action Centre.

Hike Nova Scotia and partners are hosting Trailgate Canada 150  volunteer trail maintenance events on October 14th at the Green Bay – Broad Cove Trail and Gullivers Head Look Off in Digby County.  Other fall and winter activities for Hike Nova Scotia can be found here.

A Status Report for Step it Up!  The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Promote Walking and Walkable Communities was released. The report summarizes progess, includes some success stories from various stakeholders and links to walking resources.  In addition, data released in the summer suggest that more Americans reporting walking, but not within all sub-groups.

Sedentary Behaviour

Webinar:  Screens are Everywhere:  How to Integrate Screen Time into our Daily Lives Without Sacrificing Physical Activity.  Monday October 30th, 10:00am.  Dr. Allana LeBlanc from the University of Ottawa Heart Institute will review the relationship between physical activity and screen time and related interventions.

Definitions of sedentary behaviour have been developed by the Sedentary Behaviour Research Network.  Eighty-Four researchers from 20 countries reached consensus on a number of definitions.


The City of Surrey launched a low-cost recreation and after school drop in pass.  MY Fun Pass costs $10 per month and provides children with unlimited access to drop in activities (swimming, skating, gym sports, after school program)

Amherst extended the No Fee Youth Ice Project for 2017-18, supporting the implementation of the Amherst Recreation Master Plan, the Municipal Physical Activity Strategy and as part of their approach to becoming the most active healthy community in Nova Scotia.

Tsawwassen First Nation has partnered with the local police department to offer Community Health and Wellness boxes filled with sport equipment.


A systematic review on E-health interventions showed them to be effective in addressing physical activity in youth.  More research is recommended to help fine tune interventions.  This review was assessed to be of moderate quality.

Advice from teens at the US National 4-H conference to the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion suggested that physical activity messages should focus on how teens could integrate physical activity into their lives rather than why it is important to do so.  Other advice, including using social media as a mechanism, can be found here.  Teens also provided insights into physical activity barriers and preferred types of activity.

Girls and Women

Want to encourage women to be more active?  Choose your images wisely.  Learn about research of the impact of “fitspirational images” on physical activity behaviour here.

The #girlsare campaign is supported by the Alliance for a Healthier Generation and the Clinton Foundation.  The campaigns aims to empower girls to celebrate their athleticism.

An article on Getting girls active:  Reducing gender inequality in physical activity suggests that when planning physical activity interventions for adolescent girls, it is important to recognize the value of peer-influence, parents, after school programming broadened beyond single traditional sports and active transportation

Planning and Evaluation

Are you planning to invest in parks and trails to address physical inactivity? Improving Public Health through Public Parks and Trails:  Eight Common Measures can help you to plan trails in a way that maximize potential reach within your community.  It can also support evaluation.


In October 2017, Statistics Canada released data that used accelerometers to assess physical activity and sedentary behaviour (and sleep patterns) of Canadian children and youth.  This research used the new 24-hour movement guidelines to assess status of children and youth.

Average physical activity levels of children and youth in Canada have not changed according to this research.  It is important to note that if you previously used Canadian Health Measures data to describe inactivity in children and youth (over 90% inactive) – it can’t be compared to this data because it used the old PA guidelines (60 minutes minimum of moderate to vigorous PA per day) and the new 24-hour movement guidelines used in this new research are for AN AVERAGE of 60 minutes per day.  Changing the guideline from a minimum per day to an average allows more children to fit into the “meeting the guidelines” category.  So physical activity levels have not changed, the way we asses and categorize them has changed.

There is a great infographic that summarizes the research.


  • Average daily PA for children and youth has remained fairly consistent in Canada since 2007
  • 33% of Canadian children and youth (ages 5-17) meet the current guidelines for moderate to vigorous physical activity
  • Only ½ of Canadian children and youth meet the screen time recommendation.
  • Physical activity declines with age*:
      • 5-year-old boys receive an average of 81 minutes of physical activity per day, while 12-17-year old boys receive an average of 55 minutes per day
      • 5-year-old girls receive an average of 68 minutes of physical activity per day, while 12-17 year old girls receive an average of 41 minutes per day

*remember:  these are averages. This helps to illustrate decline in physical activity with age, but doesn’t describe the % of the target groups reaching the guidelines.  Other data in this research showed that 48% of children aged 5 to 11 met the PA guidelines vs. 24.4% of youth aged 12-17.  % of children/youth meeting the screen time guidelines also declined with age.

In November 2017, New Canadian 24 Hour Movement Guidelines for the Early Years were released:

  • These are the first 24-hour movement guidelines for this age group.  They address sleep, sedentary behavior and physical activity
  • All types of movement matter and balance is required for optimal health
  • Also, new:
    • Recommendation for 30 minutes of tummy time over the day for infants
    • Recommendation for inclusion of energetic play in toddlers
    • Recommendation for inclusion of at least 60 minutes of energetic play for preschoolers
    • Encouragement of quality sedentary behaviors like reading and storytelling
  • Almost all toddlers meet the current PA guidelines, only 15% meet the screen time guidelines, 12% meet the overall movement guidelines
  • 62% of preschoolers (ages 3-4) meet these PA guidelines, 24% meet the screen time guidelines, 13% meet overall movement guidelines.


The 2018 Active Living Research Conference will be held in Banff from February 11 to 14th, 2018.  The conference theme is “Future-Proofing Activity:  Application Across Sectors”.


Looking for a way to support walking for those who are hesitant to walk outside in the winter?  Read how mall walking is facilitated in Alberta.

Volunteer run walking groups can have good reach and retention for those at risk for physical inactivity according to this recent research article.  Opportunities for social connection are an important benefit of these groups.

More Americans are walking to work in cities and towns of various sizes according to a recent report from America Walks.

This systematic review reinforces benefits accrued by “simply becoming more physically active”.  This review was assessed as having “moderate” quality.

This article is about a walkability project in East Preston and speaks to the value of the initiative in potentially creating a stronger, more socially connected and physically active rural community for an underserved population.

Have you heard about the Walk-able Wolfville Campaign?  Click on “WOLFVILLE WALKABILITY” to watch the promotional video.

Active Transportation

The Union of Nova Scotia Municipalities, in partnership with the Province of Nova Scotia and the Halifax Regional Municipality, will be hosting the first Atlantic Canada Active Transportation Summit to be held on May 23-24, 2018 at the Halifax Central Library.  The event will feature guest speakers from across Atlantic Canada and will promote information sharing among communities and practitioners.  Send an email to ATSummit2018@halifax.ca to receive the call for presentations, registration opening and other AT Summit updates.

The Conference Board of Canada is hosting:  Thinking About Infrastructure 2018:  Querying the Infrastructure Gap on April 25-26th in Ottawa.

Less Structured Physical Activity Opportunities

The Town of Antigonish is installing a temporary outdoor skating facility at a local ball field.

Access and Inclusion

Canadian Tire Jumpstart helps kids overcome financial and accessibility barriers to sport and recreation. The Play Finds a Way movement will remove barriers for kids with disabilities.   Jumpstart Accessibility Grants will support construction and renovation capital costs to improve accessibility of recreation facilities.

Communities Culture and Heritage are offering grants for small businesses to improve accessibility.  1 Million dollars has been invested into the Small Business ACCESS-Ability Program in support of the new Accessibility Act.

The Free ice time project in Amherst has resulted in increased in skating club registrations, minor hockey registrations and a 60 per cent increase in public skating.  (See page 5 in the Sport Nova Scotia newsletter)

Baddeck Pop Ban Update


Rural Children and Adults Have Significantly Higher Rates of Obesity than their Urban Counterparts 


– This study on ways to better improve active living in rural communities.  Many of these items would make sense for physical activity strategies in rural municipalities and Mi’kmaw communities.


Even after accounting for differences such as socioeconomic factors, eating behaviors, and physical activity. Higher rates of overweight and obesity among rural residents, even after accounting for these demographic and behavioral factors, suggests that rural environments themselves may somehow promote obesity. Based on recent national body mass index (BMI) data, the obesity rate for rural children ages 2–18 is 22 percent, compared to 17 percent for urban children. Among children, rural black children have the highest risk of all subgroups, with a higher obesity rate than both rural white children5 and urban black children.Among adults, 40 percent of rural adults are obese, compared to 33% of urban adults.

Sugar, Heart Disease & Stroke


Position Statement by Heart & Stroke Foundation

New supplement to the Journal of PA and Health that focuses on Walking:


Alzheimers Could Be Prevented By Meeting Minimum Physical Activity Guidelines


Researchers recently reviewed over 800 studies and concluded that 1 in 7 cases of ‪#‎Alzheimers‬ could be prevented if everyone met the minimum guidelines of 150 minutes of ‪#‎exercise‬ per week, in doses as short as 10 minutes at a time.

Checkup CBC Panel: Cancer the #1 Killer – Aired Nov 25th on CBC

CBC Health Panel has the latest on cancer. What are we doing to prevent it, what are we doing to treat it and are we any closer to a cure?


High Cost of Obesity


The Secrets of Sugar


Happy Feet
Series on research at Cape Breton University, discuss why walking and biking to school with your children creates positive emotions. Catherine O’Brien, an Associate Professor in the Education Department at the School of Professional Studies at CBU, explains. Monday January 20, 2014

Daily Physical Activity May Help Lower Parkinson’s Risk


Obese, Overweight Population hits 2.1 billion worldwide


Older Women Who Exercise Outdoors More Likely To Stick With It, Study Finds



Let Them Play project supported after school physical activity programs for children ages 5-12 in Kings County, Nova Scotia. The project uncovered insights on how to structure a successful after school program and on the types of programs that work well for engaging children in physical activity. These insights are share in the report titled Let Them Play: Lessons in After School Program Quality Through the RBC Learn to Play Project (authors: Legrand, Memet, Raftery). It also provides recommendations for funding and policies related to after school programs. Download the report. http://activeafterschool.ca/resource/let-them-play-lessons-after-school-program-quality-kings-county-nova-scotia

The project was part of a year-long Leadership Project undertaken by the Kings County Recreation Group, with funding support from RBC, the Annapolis Valley Regional School Board, the Province of Nova Scotia, Sport Nova Scotia and the Municipality of the County of Kings.

Congestive Heart Failure Risk


Pacific Medical Training Health Articles through David Patterson:


Published the following articles which you may want to check:





Suzanne Michaels
Editorial Staff –  Pacific Medical Training
1-800-417-1748, Ext. 108

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s