Physical Activity Report Card aims to increase physical activity levels in children worldwide

Posted by ap507 at Jun 02, 2014 10:45 AM |
Dr Deirdre Harrington chairs development group behind Report Card for Ireland
Physical Activity Report Card aims to increase physical activity levels in children worldwide

Picture of Dr Deirdre Harrington (Ireland Report Card) with investigators from the University of Bath (Dr Martyn Standage and Ms Hannah Wilkie) who co-ordinated England’s Report Card

In May, 15 countries from around the world published a series of grades based on children’s physical activity levels.

The Report Card on Physical Activity in Children and Youth is a means of collating all data related to children’s physical activity levels in a particular country and ‘grading’ the evidence. Nine common indicators that are known to influence children’s overall physical activity levels will be graded using a grading system just like a school report card i.e. A to F or inconclusive/incomplete if there are not enough data available yet. These indicators are behaviours (for example, TV viewing, sport participation and active play) and settings (for example, the home, the school and governmental) that are known to influence children’s physical activity.

The Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth has been an effective tool in powering the movement to get kids moving by influencing priorities, policies and practice in Canada who are now in their 10th year of producing this Report Card. Last week, 14 other countries from around the globe, that have replicated the Report Card process, joined Canada and presented their Report Cards at the Global Summit on Physical Activity of Children in Toronto.

University academic, Dr Deirdre Harrington, a Lecturer in Physical Activity, Sedentary Behaviour and Health, chaired the group that has developed the Report Card for Ireland. The Report Card was officially launched in Ireland to much media attention. She is based at the Leicester Diabetes Centre - an alliance between the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust (Leicester’s Hospitals), the University of Leicester, the local community and Primary Care and is located at Leicester General Hospital. Her work is part of the NIHR Leicester –Loughborough Diet, Lifestyle and Physical Activity Biomedical Research Unit.

This first Report Card will act as a baseline for surveillance of physical activity promotion efforts and to ensure that any changes are captured. It will also be used as an advocacy document for investment and policy change by highlighting indicators that ‘could do better.’ Ireland joined Scotland, who have already launched their Report Card, and England at this Summit.

  • Dr Deirdre Harrington, Lecturer in Physical Activity, Sedentary Behaviour and Health at the University of Leicester, based at the Diabetes Research Centre, has been developing Ireland first Physical Activity Report Card in Children and Youth for the past year along with colleagues from across Ireland and will present Ireland’s Report Card in Toronto in May 2014.
  • Press Release