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How much exercise do we need

Physical activity is Medicine”

The beneficial effects of exercise (physical activity) are well known but often ignored by the medical profession and public. 3.3 million people die aroung the world each year due to physical inactivity and is the 4th leading cause of death. Exercise has a beneficial effect on 23 diseases or health conditions.

Exercise helps reduce raised blood pressure, heart disease, cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, stroke, obesity, depression as well as hip fractures and falls in the elderly.

Exercise prescription

Fitness has several components and each should be addressed as part of as fitness program.

Anaerobic fitness – “power”

Aerobic fitness – “endurance”

Flexibility and balance.

The type and amount of exercise is determined by the Frequency Intensity Type and Time the FITT  principle. It is dependent on your age and should be modified if you have any health problems. People with health issues especially diabetes, heart and lung conditions, obesity or who are pregnant should consult their doctor before starting an exercise program.

FITT program

This is catogorised by age group and the link to the relevant page is included below.

Age 5-18


Age 19-64


Age 65+



NHS choices also has a good information on its web site



You do not need to be a gym bunny or spend your life running to gain. The more unfit you are at the beginning, the greater the gain you will experience when you start exercising.