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Parents significantly underestimate how long children should be active for each day, new research finds

A group of teenage girls playing netball

The UK Chief Medical Officer (CMO) recommends that children aged 5 to 18 should be highly active (with an elevated heart rate) for an average of at least 60 minutes a day, across the week in order to stay happy and healthy.

However, new research by YouGov commissioned by children’s charity the Youth Sport Trust reveals parents are more likely to believe that children only need to be active for 30 minutes a day, less than half of the recommended guidance. 

  • Almost half of all parents (48%) believe children aged 5-18 should only be active for 30 minutes or less a day 
  • Just 43% believe children should be active for at least 60 minutes every day 
  • 97% of teachers agree play and sport can support mental wellbeing 
  • Charity the Youth Sport Trust launches National School Sports Week powered by Sports Direct, to raise awareness and get children ‘playing for fun, playing for 60’ this June 

The Youth Sport Trust thinks that low awareness of the recommendation is contributing to low activity levels amongst children.