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It’s good for your school-age child to have at least one hour of physical activity every day.

Current Australian guidelines say that kids aged 5-12 years need at least one hour (and up to several hours) of moderate to vigorous physical activity each day.

  • Moderate activities get your child gently huffing and puffing, and are about as intense as a brisk walk.
  • Vigorous activities get your child huffing and puffing a lot, and building up a sweat. 

This kind of activity can be enjoyed in small blocks of time, about 5-15 minutes, building up to around two hours over the day.

    Physical activity is not necessarily ‘exercise’. Your child doesn’t have to play an organised sport or do push-ups to achieve benefits. Simple activities can include:

    • going for walks, or walking to child care or school
    • spending time at the playground
    • playing in the shallows at the beach
    • playing chasey or keepings off in the yard.
    Recent studies show that in Australia many boys and most girls aren’t getting enough physical activity every day.
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    • Last Updated 14-03-2012
    • Last Reviewed 06-09-2009
    • Bauman, A. (2004). Physical activity. In R. Moodie & A. Hulme (Eds). Hands-on health promotion. Melbourne: IP Communications.

      Michaud-Thomson, L et al. (2003).Walk to school-does it make a difference in children’s physical activity levels? ACPHER Healthy Lifestyles Journal, 50:3-4, 16-24.

      Department of Health and Ageing (2005). Active kids are healthy kids: Australia’s physical activity recommendations for 5-12 year olds. Retrieved 21 December, 2005 from http://www.health.gov.au/internet/wcms/publishing.nsf/Content/9D7D393564FA0C42CA256F970014A5D4/$File/kids_phys.pdf