What will it take to get our children active?

Thursday 9th May 10:45 - 11:35

It is recommended that children do at least 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity every day, yet just 23% of boys and 20% of girls aged 5 to 15 years currently meet this recommendation.

The benefits of regular physical activity allow the development of strong muscles and bones, maintenance of a healthy weight, a decreased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, better sleep and attention, and improved mental health. Mastering physical skills can help build confidence at every age. And active kids are more likely to be motivated, focused, and successful in school.

Spend continues to increase with the Department of Education alone pledging to double the amount of funding for PE and sport in schools. Coupled with this a predicted £141 billion is forecast to be spent by 2022 in the UK leisure market, with an increasing focus on children and teenagers.

Yet the barriers to activity for children and young people remain - changes are needed at every level in order to take a more holistic approach to health, happiness and wellbeing.

Today’s kids are the least active ever, and are likely to lead a shorter life than their parents – truly deliver the power of sport and physical activity to support the development of character, resilience and broader life skills – as well as improving the mental and physical wellbeing of our children? What will it take to get our children active in and out of school?

Dr Zoe Williams, RCGP Clinical Champion Physical Activity and Public Health England Physical Activity Champion

Conf - day 2 - What will it take to get our children active?

Zoe Williams currently practices as an NHS GP in London. Her portfolio GP career means that she has multiple roles, including Public Health England Lead Clinical champion for Physical Activity, RCGP clinical champion - Physical Activity and lifestyle, and CCG clinical associate - Obesity and Lifestyle. She is also a Director of The British Society of Lifestyle medicine.

Zoe’s ambition has always been to combine her dedication to medicine, her passions for health and fitness as well as succeed in a career in media.She had her first taste of this when selected out of thousands for Sky 1’s Gladiators and became the undefeated ‘Amazon.’ Zoe went on to become resident doctor on ITV’s popular daytime show ‘This Morning’. She has presented across BBC network, including BBC News broadcast, ‘Horizons’ and ‘Trust Me I’m a Doctor’.She specializes in debunking the confusing world of medicine, in a fun and entertaining way.

In 2009 she founded the organisation ‘Sportsgirls’, a non-profit organisation which aims to increase the physical activity of teen girls by inspiring, educating and motivating them to be healthier and more active. In 2013 workshops were also developed for boys and the organisation was renamed 'Fit4Life'. By working in partnership with specialist community based organisations who share our aims, we help young people gain that essential initial start in life by improving their health, wellbeing and boosting their life aspirations, to help them be the best they can be.

David Stalker, CEO at MyZone EMEA