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Physical activity: the WHO Global Action Plan

Last June, the World Health Organization (WHO) launched the global action plan More active people for a healthier world 2018-2030, aimed at promoting a physically active lifestyle. It consists of 4 strategic objectives, associated with a variable number of policies and 20 specific actions, with an ambitious goal: to reduce by 15% the physical inactivity of adolescents and adults. It has been scientifically proven that regular physical activity helps prevent and treat non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes, breast and colon cancer.

Regular physical activity also helps prevent hypertension, avoid being overweight and obesity, and improve mental health, quality of life and well-being. At present, 1 in 4 adults (23%) and as many as 3 adolescents (aged 11-17) out of 4 (81%) worldwide do not meet the WHO global recommendations for physical activity. That is why promoting physical activity is also one of the pillars of the United Nations' 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

What is meant by "physical activity"?

The WHO defines physical activity as "any body movement produced by the musculoskeletal system that requires energy expenditure". It can be done in many different ways: walking, cycling, sports and active recreation. Physical activity can also be carried out as part of your own work and housework.
The WHO Global Recommendation on Adult Health Physical Activity provides for 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week, which is a set of activities in multiple areas (work, travel, recreation and sport). For adolescents, the recommendation is 60 minutes of moderate to intense physical activity per day.

The pillars of the WHO Plan of Action

Vision: more active people for a healthier world.

Mission: To ensure that everyone has access to safe and enabling environments and opportunities to be physically active in their daily lives, as a means to improve public and individual health, to contribute to the social, cultural and economic development of all nations.

Target: A 15% reduction on a global scale in the prevalence of physical inactivity of adults and adolescents by 2030 (and 10% by 2025).

Create active societies

Four specific actions to bring about a paradigm shift in societies that can improve knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the multiple benefits of regular physical activity for all age groups and abilities.

Create active environments

Five specific actions to create and maintain environments that promote and safeguard the right of all people and all ages to have fair and safe access to places and spaces in their cities, in which to perform regular physical activity, according to their abilities.

Create active people

Six specific actions to create and promote access to opportunities and programs to help people of all ages and abilities engage in regular physical activity such as individuals, families and communities.

Create active systems

Five specific actions to create and strengthen leadership, governance, multi-sectoral collaboration, workforce capacity, advocacy and information systems across all sectors, for the mobilisation and implementation of coordinated actions at regional, national and international levels to increase physical activity and reduce sedentary behaviour.

Obesity: a global problem

Among the many side effects of sedentary and inactive lifestyles, obesity is certainly one of the most dangerous for people's physical and mental health. The data collected by the WHO in February 2018 speak clearly and are alarming:

  • Worldwide, obesity has almost tripled since 1975;
  • In 2016, more than 1.9 billion adults over the age of 18 (39% of the total) were overweight. Of these, more than 650 million were obese (13% of the total);
  • Most of the world's population lives in countries where overweight and obesity kill more than underweight;
  • 41 million children under 5 years of age were overweight or obese by 2016;
  • More than 340 million children and adolescents between the ages of 5 and 19 were overweight or obese by 2016.

This is data that should not be underestimated and that can trigger great change, because obesity can be prevented and treated.

The mission of Technogym

Regular physical activity is one of the pillars of the fight against obesity and its harmful effects on health and the fitness and wellness industry has a key role in this battle, which can and must be won at all ages and in all conditions. Technogym, like the WHO, has long been proposing physical activity as a means of prevention and cure for the health of the population. The answer to a sedentary life is an active life, a wellness life.
Nerio Alessandri

Wellness is a social opportunity for all: for governments that can reduce healthcare costs, for companies that can count on more creative and productive collaborators and for all citizens who can improve their health and daily lifestyle.

On this front, Technogym convincingly takes to the field with all its means and with the app Mywellness. The connected experience and personalised training app that guides people to achieve their sporting results in fitness and health, in an easy, fast and fun way. Starting from this year, the individual user can also contribute to the campaign by registering for a participating gym and downloading the app; once downloaded, it will also be possible to do physical activity independently and thus contribute to the accumulation of moves.

Let's Move for a Better World

Let's Move for a Better World is Technogym's social campaign to promote the fight against sedentary lifestyles. One goal: to raise awareness of the many benefits of exercise through a fun challenge. Using Technogym related products during the campaign you can collect MOVEs, motivating people to move and doing something good at the same time. The MOVEs collected in fact can be donated: do good to yourself and others!

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