Research has found that 80% of people in England do not meet the government’s physical activity targets.
Only 20% of UK adults exercise regularly
The study found that a large majority of the adult population do not undergo moderate exercise at least 12 times in a four-week period. Amongst the data collected they found that 88% of people had not swum and 90% of people did not use the gym.
Researchers from the University of Bristol investigated data of more than a million adults in England and found that there was also a correlation with between exercise and socioeconomic status.
The data was taken from the Active People Survey (ABS) and includes social details such as income, education level and activity and geographical factors.
By comparing the two they found that those who possessed a higher socioeconomic position were more likely to exercise and those with a degree were only 12% likely to be physically inactive. Similarly, those without any qualifications were three times as likely to be physically inactive.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that physical inactivity causes 1.9 million deaths per year worldwide
There was a significant link between physical inactivity and the deprivation of the local area, those with a higher number of facilities and higher rates of expenditure were less likely to have physically inactive individuals.
Carol Propper, Professor of Economics at Bristol’s Centre for Market and Public Organisation, said: “Physical inactivity is the most important modifiable health behaviour for chronic disease so knowing who is physically inactive is important for designing cost-effective policy interventions.
“These findings show physical inactivity in England has a large socioeconomic gradient with clear evidence of independent disparities by gender, ethnic group, age, geographic area and socioeconomic position.
“They suggest that financial as well as cultural barriers need to be overcome to reduce the prevalence of physical inactivity.”
PruHealth, a leading health insurance provider, can offer discount memberships to various gyms and sports club as part of their Vitality scheme.
© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2013