The Healthy Active Kids Report Card 2010, highlighted concerning trends in healthy eating, physical activity, tobacco and alcohol use in children and adolescents in South Africa with less than 70% of high-school learners have regularly scheduled physical education with an increase in overweight and obese children to 20% and 5% respectively.
A glaring reality is that if action is not taken soon, to curb the current lack of physical activity amongst South Africans, this prevalence of obesity will continue to increase.
In April 2002, the World Health Organisation introduced World Health Day in Sao Paulo, Brazil, with the theme “Move for Health”. The Agita Mundo global physical activity network encourages all partners to organise events in celebration of World Physical Activity Day.
In 2010, 4 million people participated in World Physical Activity Day, with 2 million representing Cuba alone. Other countries with excellent participation included Columbia, Argentina and Brazil.
The Sports Science Institute of South Africa (SSISA) and the UCT Exercise Science and Sports Medicine Research Unit (ESSM) is encouraging all South Africans to clock a block for health, in support of World Physical Activity Day.
They invite you to be part of this global initiative so that we can work together towards being the country with the highest participation. Not only will you be an encouragement to your friends, colleagues and your family, but you will also help us to spread the message of the importance of being physically active, across South Africa.
On 6 April 2011, all South Africans are invited to clock a block for health.
Walk around the block at work, at school or in your neighbourhood. Mobilise your friends, family and colleagues to join you. This is about MASS participation, encouraging as many South Africans as possible to participate. Let’s join hands to participate in this initiative and aim to clock at least 10 minutes of walking together.
We encourage you to participate in this initiative as a group or organisation – spreading the message as a team to all corners of South Africa.
Think about this it way…if 300 000 South Africans walked for 30 minutes, we would have walked the circumference of the Earth! For more information, visit us on Facebook under World Physical Activity Day – South Africa and don’t forget to like the page.
Once you have done your walking on 6 April 2011, visit our page and let us know:
what activity you did
how long it took to do the activity (ideally at least 10 minutes)
how many people participated in the activity with you
and where your activity took place.
You can also e-mail us on firstname.lastname@example.org or send a fax to (021) 686 7530, marked ‘World Physical Activity Day’. We would love to know what you and your group did to make a difference.
(Press release, March 2011)