Regular physical activity is proven to help prevent and treat noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes and breast and colon cancer. It also helps prevent hypertension, overweight and obesity and can improve mental health, quality of life and well-being. Yet, much of the world is becoming less active.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has developed a new global action plan, More Active People for a Healthier World, to help countries scale up policy actions to promote physical activity. It responds to the requests by countries for updated guidance, and a framework of effective and feasible policy actions to increase physical activity at all levels.
The plan sets out four objectives and recommends 20 policy actions that are applicable to all countries and address the cultural, environmental and individual determinants of inactivity.
The objectives are:
- Create active societies
- Create active environments
- Create active people
- Create active systems
Working in partnerships, WHO will support countries to implement a whole community approach to increase levels of physical activity in people of all ages and abilities. Global, regional and national coordination and capacity will be strengthened to respond to needs for technical support, innovation and guidance.