Physical activity and health in Europe: evidence for action




Edited by Nick Cavill, Sonja Kahlmeier and Francesca Racioppi
2006, ix + 34 pages
ISBN 92 890 1387 7
CHF 15.00
In developing countries: CHF 10.50
Order no. 13400063

Physical activity is a fundamental means of improving people's physical and mental health. It reduces the risks of many noncommunicable diseases and benefits society by increasing social interaction and community engagement. Unfortunately, more than half the population of the WHO European Region is not active enough to meet health recommendations, and the trend is towards less activity, not more.

A potentially important way to respond to this challenge is the promotion of health-enhancing physical activity. This concept stresses the importance of physical activity as part of everyday life, not an optional extra to be added at the end of a busy day.

This booklet is written for European policy-makers and leaders from different sectors that can promote physical activity, including health, sports and recreation, transport, employment, urban planning, education and the mass media. It sets out the facts about health-enhancing physical activity, provides examples of action already being taken, highlights the contributions that can be made by health and other sectors and makes the case for concerted action across the WHO European Region.