PhysicalTherapy.com Phone: 866-782-6258


Physical Activity Guidelines for Children

Amy M. Schlessman, PT, DPT, DHS

February 17, 2015

Share:

Question

What are the physical activity guidelines for children?  

Answer

In 2008, the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans was released.  It is sometimes referred to as PAG.  It is the first ever publication of national guidelines for physical activity.  The recommendation is that both children and adolescents will achieve 60 minutes or more of physical activity each day.  Within these 60 minutes, there should be three types of physical activity: aerobic activity, muscle strengthening, and bone strengthening. 

Aerobic activity.  Most of the 60 minutes of physical activity each day should be aerobic activity.  This is the recommendation.  This can either be moderate intensity or vigorous intensity.  Moderate intensity could be a brisk walk and vigorous intensity could be running.  You want to include the vigorous intensity aerobic activity on at least three of the days of the week.  

Muscle strengthening.  It is recommended that muscle strengthening is incorporated into at least three days per week as part of the 60 minutes or more of physical activity that both children and adolescents are getting.  This can be gymnastics or push-ups, for example.  When you think about muscle strengthening activities, we are thinking about activities that promote all muscle movement and are working all the major muscle groups such as the legs, hips, back, chest, stomach, shoulders, and arms. 

Bone strengthening. These activities are recommended at least three days a week as part of the 60 minutes or more. They include high impact activities such as jumping rope, running and hopscotch.  


amy m schlessman

Amy M. Schlessman, PT, DPT, DHS

Amy is an Assistant Professor in the Physical Therapy Program and a Center of Teaching Excellence Faculty Liaison at the University of Findlay. She is the Website Co-Chair and Zoom Committee Chair for the Academy of Pediatric Physical Therapy. Amy has been practicing as a school-based PT for over 18 years, focusing on health promotion and physical activity embedded into academics and interprofessional collaboration, while closely working with educators, administrators, therapists, and parents. Her research on pediatric health promotion was published in Pediatric Physical Therapy. Amy also published, “Recycle Bin Boogie: Move and Learn with Recyclables,” a physical activity book combining academic concepts with common household recyclables. She has presented regionally and nationally on a variety of topics related to health promotion, active learning, school-based therapy, and special education. 


Related Courses

Beating Burnout and Building Resilience: Strategies to Succeed
Presented by Amy M. Schlessman, PT, DPT, DHS
Recorded Webinar

Presenter

Amy M. Schlessman, PT, DPT, DHS
Course: #3939Level: Introductory2 Hours
  'Examples on how to deal with burnout'   Read Reviews
Burnout among healthcare professionals is widespread. In a national survey of PTs, 29% were found to have high emotional exhaustion burnout. Burnout of healthcare professionals is detrimental to patient care and the professional. This session will provide an overview of the history of burnout, causes, signs, effects, the prevalence in healthcare workers, and strategies to prevent and reduce burnout and build resilience. This course is directly related to the practice of physical therapy and is therefore appropriate for the PT/PTA.

Impact of Motor Learning For The Child With Autism Spectrum Disorder
Presented by Mariah Woody, OTR/L, Lisa Roehl, PT, DPT, Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Pediatric Physical Therapy
Recorded Webinar

Presenters

Mariah Woody, OTR/LLisa Roehl, PT, DPT, Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Pediatric Physical Therapy
Course: #3870Level: Advanced4 Hours
  'This course was so helpful and will be very impactful for my practice'   Read Reviews
Master skills to implement in your practice immediately with continued Master Class. Children with ASD face challenges as they form the motor programs that serve as the basis for daily life and play. This interdisciplinary course series will expand upon the theory of praxis and the child’s ability to adaptively respond to their environment in a way that is meaningful and efficient. Through practical and clinical demonstrations, the learner will develop a deeper understanding of the importance of motor learning for the child with ASD. This course is directly related to the practice of physical therapy and is therefore appropriate for the PT/PTA.

Power to Go: Meeting the Needs of Pediatric Power Mobility Learners
Presented by Lisa Kenyon, PT, DPT, PhD, PCS
Recorded Webinar

Presenter

Lisa Kenyon, PT, DPT, PhD, PCS
Course: #3615Level: Introductory2 Hours
  'Very informative'   Read Reviews
Recent research identifies three different groups of pediatric power mobility learners. Clinically-based intervention strategies, including tools to monitor intervention outcomes, to meet the specific learning needs of children in each power mobility group will be presented and discussed. This course is directly related to the practice of physical therapy and is therefore appropriate for the PT/PTA.

Tools You Can Use: Enhancing Outcomes Assessment in Children with Cerebral Palsy
Presented by Lisa Kenyon, PT, DPT, PhD, PCS
Recorded Webinar

Presenter

Lisa Kenyon, PT, DPT, PhD, PCS
Course: #3616Level: Intermediate2 Hours
  'Excellent teaching style; great review of outcome measures and how they relate to the ICF; good highlights of important aspects of outcome measures'   Read Reviews
This session will focus on outcome measures reflecting the various domains of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF) that can be used with children who have cerebral palsy. Guidelines related to the use and application of these various tools will be presented and discussed whilst case scenarios and vignettes will be used to illustrate the application of these evidence-based tools to pediatric practice. This course is directly related to the practice of physical therapy and is therefore appropriate for the PT/PTA.

Lab Values and Vital Signs in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit
Presented by Alicia Fernandez-Fernandez, PT, DPT, PhD, CNT
Recorded Webinar

Presenter

Alicia Fernandez-Fernandez, PT, DPT, PhD, CNT
Course: #3363Level: Introductory2 Hours
  'Excellent content that is directly applicable to real life situations'   Read Reviews
This course is designed to be an introductory overview of the interpretation of laboratory values and vital sign measurements in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). The aim is to provide neonatal therapists with a framework for clinical decision-making so that they can recognize imbalances that may require modifications in the plan of care, or discussion with the nurse or neonatologist before further treatment.This course is directly related to the practice of physical therapy and is therefore appropriate for the PT and PTA.

Our site uses cookies to improve your experience. By using our site, you agree to our Privacy Policy.