Why A Physical Activity Day is Important

Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are the leading causes of death globally, killing more people each year than all other causes combined. Nearly 80% of NCD deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries. The combined burden of NCDs is rising the fastest among lower-income countries, populations and communities such as Africa, where they create large, avoidable costs in human, social and economic terms.

NCDs are caused, to a large extent, by four behavioural risk factors that are universal aspects of economic transition, rapid urbanization and 21st-century lifestyles: tobacco use, unhealthy diet, insufficient physical activity and the harmful use of alcohol. The greatest effects of these risk factors are increasingly seen on low- and middle-income countries, and on poorer people within all countries, mirroring the underlying socioeconomic determinants. Among these populations, a vicious cycle may ensue: poverty exposes people to behavioural risk factors for NCDs and, in turn, the resulting NCDs may become an important driver to the downward spiral that leads families towards poverty. As a result, unless the NCD epidemic is aggressively confronted in the most heavily affected countries and communities, the mounting impact of NCDs will continue and the global goal of reducing poverty will be undermined. Source. Global Status Report on NCDs, 2010

Physical Activity Benefits
The benefits of physical activity are numerous, and extend beyond health alone. Being physically active is a major contributor to one’s overall physical, academic and mental wellbeing. Positive outcomes include a sense of purpose and value, a better quality of life, improved sleep, sports excellence and reduced stress, as well as stronger relationships and social connectedness. Additionally, active movements, such as walking and cycling, are good for the environment, which in turn also has a positive impact on health.
Source. The Lancet Physical Activity Series, July 2012

How much physical activity is enough for your health?
All you need is a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate activity every day of the week! That’s not too much if you think about it.

What do I do?
From 1- 6 April GPAN encourages all Ghanaians to GET MOVING FOR HEALTH! Here is what to do…
Step 1. Chat to friends and family, colleagues at work or peers at college about  the World Day for Physical Activity.
Step 2. As a group, plan a physical activity event in your community, school, workplace or college. This could be a walk, a sports game/tournament (like a soccer game), an aerobics or dance class, or any other fun activities.
Step 3. Advertise your event through email or mobile phone communication and social media. Invite local government, NGO’s and media to attend your event.
Your event can be registered at www.portalagita.org.br/en/agita-mundo.html