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Report recommends over two hours of exercise a week

Just two-and-a-half hours of moderate exercise across the week will improve bone and heart health, cognitive function and mental health for adults, according to new HSE guidelines.

For the first time, guidelines have been issued for very young children.

The guidelines, which were published today, say that infants aged less than a year, should not be secured for more than an hour at a time in a pram, highchair, or on a caregiver’s back.

They should be physically active, several times a day, through floor-based play.

Children and adolescents aged five to 17 years should do at least an average of one hour a day, of moderate to vigorous mostly aerobic physical activity.

For adults aged 18-64 and older, two-and-a-half hours to five hours of moderate intensity aerobic physical activity throughout the week is recommended.

The guidelines are broadly the same for people with disabilities.

Today’s report says that sedentary activity includes most desk-based office work, driving a car, and watching television.

Screen time is a very common type of sedentary activity especially with the popularity of computers and mobile devices.

Higher amounts of sedentary behaviour are linked to heart disease, cancer and Type 2 diabetes.

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