ACT residents are the most physically active in Australia, according to Sport Australia’s latest AusPlay survey, which measures exercise habits across the country.
In the last financial year, almost 88 per cent of Canberrans over 15 said they played sport or exercised at least once a week, above the national rate of 82 per cent.
The ACT also topped the list for playing sport or exercising at least three times a week, with almost 70 per cent of adults saying they get out and about frequently, above the national average of 63 per cent.
Sport Australia CEO Kate Palmer said AusPlay, which surveys 20,000 Australians annually, was an important way to track how Australians engaged with sport and physical activity.
“The latest AusPlay results show that almost 13 million Australians aged 15 or over participate in sport or physical activity at least three times a week. Almost 60 per cent of Australian children are active at least once a week in organised activities outside school,” Ms Palmer said.
“We want to see that increase because we know the physical, mental and social benefits that being active provides.”
Worryingly, 10 per cent of Australians don’t engage in sports or physical activity each year. Australians are being encouraged to exercise for at least 30 minutes a day, with kids being urged get outside and be active for at least an hour each day.
“The Australian Government’s national sports plan, Sport 2030, has set a long-term goal for Australia to become the world’s most active and healthy nation. We have accomplished a lot so far, but there is far more to do if we are to continue to get Australia moving and achieve our vision,” Ms Palmer says.
The key is to find something you enjoy, Ms Palmer says.
AusPlay shows that recreational walking continues to be the most popular activity across the nation, with almost 9 million Australian adults making it a staple of their exercise regime.
Walking is also a favourite for Canberrans keeping active, with fitness or gym work, running, cycling and swimming rounding out the top five.
The Northern Territory consistently underperformed across the board, coming last in every category, and well under the national average.
There is a strong correlation between socio-economic status and physical activity, which helps explain why urban areas have higher rates of activity then more remote locations.
More information and a more detailed breakdown of the statistics can be accessed here.