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Physical activity data tool: statistical commentary, January 2022

Source: Gov.UK 11.01.22



New data on children and young people’s physical activity in 2020 to 2021 has been added to the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities' Physical Activity Tool which includes related risk factors and conditions such as obesity and diabetes.

The data shows that activity levels remain down compared to pre-pandemic but have not fallen further. In 2020 to 2021, only 44.6% of 5 to 16 year olds in England met the Chief Medical Officers’ guidelines of participating in sport and physical activity for an average of 60 minutes or more every day – similar to the previous year. Those in Years 1 to 2 were more likely to be active (51.8%) than those in Years 3 to 6 (42.3%) and Years 7 to 11 (43.6%). A significant increase among girls undertaking physical activities resulted in 45.3% in achieving the recommended physical activity levels compared to boys at 44.7%. 

Considerable differences in activity levels remained among ethnic groups, White British still most likely to be physically active (47.7%), and those that identified as Black (35.7%), Other (38.0%) or Asian (38.7%) least likely to be active. No ethnic groups reported a statistically significant change in activity levels compared with 2019 to 2020.

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