Ireland’s Report Card on Physical Activity in Children and Youth

The Report Card on Physical Activity in Children and Youth is a means of collating all data related to children’s physical activity levels in a particular country and ‘grading’ the evidence using a grading system just like a school report card. It was first started in Canada and since then a further 14 countries including Ireland have taken part.

Ireland received a ‘D minus’ overall in their first report card released this week. The same grade was handed down for our performance when it comes to physical education (PE). Despite this, Ireland still ranks in the middle on the global matrix of report card grades measuring physical activity in 15 countries. These grades were based on the physical activity levels of youth in Ilrenad (published between 2003 and 2013). This showed that between 12% and 43% of children do enough physical activity. 

The Report Card on Physical Activity is a comprehensive assessment of the current state of physical activity among children and youth. There are a number of ‘indicators related to children’s physical activity’ that have been included in this Report Card. These indicators include the behaviours (TV viewing, sport participation, active transportation, active play and PE participation) that influence children’s overall physical activity levels. They can also include the settings (the home, the school, the community and the built environment and government investment and policy) that are known to support children’s physical activity.

The Report Card has had a number of uses and impacts in other countries including motivating decision makers to make positive choices about physical activity programming. In all countries, the Report Card will provide a comprehensive assessment of indicators relating to school, family, community and the built environment, and policy that contribute to the physical activity levels of Irish children and youth. Monitoring how these indicators change over time is important. This first Report Card in Ireland will act as a baseline for surveillance of physical activity promotion efforts and to ensure that any changes are captured. 

Posted: 21/05/2014 12:26:53 by Laura Keaver


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