SportSG & HPB Change Guidelines For Exercise Recommended For Singaporeans
Although many workers have returned to working in the office, some are still on hybrid working arrangements.
With a reduced level of activity, it is more important than ever to ensure we remain fit and healthy.
In light of the importance of such activities, Sport Singapore (SportSG) and the Health Promotion Board (HPB) have revised the physical activity guidelines in Singapore.
Adults should now aim to clock 150 to 300 minutes of exercise per week. Both organisations also cited a survey that revealed that Singaporeans were not engaging in enough physical activity.
SportSG & HPB increase physical activity in guidelines
In a Facebook post on Sunday (12 Jun), SportSG and HPB released the revised Singapore Physical Activity Guidelines (SPAG), a set of revamped guidelines for physical activity.
The purpose of these guidelines, which were first launched in 2011, is to motivate Singaporeans of all ages to participate in more physical activities.
The updated version calls for adults aged 18 to 64 years old to exercise between 150 and 300 minutes a week with no minimum timing.
Previously, the SPAG stated that adults need to exercise for a minimum of 150 minutes.
Singaporeans need not only go to the gym to fulfil this quota. Instead, they can find ways to incorporate exercise into their daily lives. For instance, they can choose to walk to collect food instead of having it delivered. Or they can take the stairs instead of the lift.
Adults should also consider a range of different exercises to work out muscle groups instead of sticking to one type of muscular fitness only.
“Cardio is a good start but it’s not the be-all and end-all,” said Dr Benedict Tan, the head of the SingHealth Duke-NUS Sport & Exercise Medicine Centre, while speaking to The Straits Times (ST).
Singaporeans are not exercising enough
Dr Tan also added that the number of Singaporeans engaging in physical activity has gone up. But so has the number of patients with health conditions.
“What’s happening is those who are already active are getting more active but the sedentary have remained sedentary,” Dr Tan said. “For this version, we needed a refreshed approach to target them.”
The National Population Health Survey 2020 revealed that 76.4% of respondents aged 18 to 74 participated in an appropriate amount of total physical activity. This is down from 80.1% in 2019 and 80.9% in 2017.
However, the number of Singaporeans exercising regularly did increase from 29.4% in 2017 to 33.4%.
On the flip side, the number of patients with diabetes mellitus from 2019 to 2020 rose to 9.5% from 8.8% in 2017.
The new guidelines will thus encourage Singaporeans away from a sedentary lifestyle, and toward a more active one.
Strive to have a more healthy lifestyle
It is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle, not just for our physical welfare but for our mental wellness as well.
Hopefully, with the new guidelines in place, more Singaporeans are willing to get moving and stay active.
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Featured image adapted from Sport Singapore on Facebook.
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