The Guidelines on Physical Activity for Older People gives five key recommendations to help older people live longer, healthier lives. These recommendations are:
- be as physically active as possible and limit sedentary behaviour
- consult an appropriate health practitioner before starting or increasing physical activity
- start off slowly and build up to the recommended daily physical activity levels
- aim to increase physical activity on five days per week for at least 30 minutes if the activity is of moderate-intensity; 15 minutes if it is of vigorous-intensity; or a mixture of moderate- and vigorous-intensity aerobic activity
- aim to do three sessions of flexibility and balance activities, and two sessions of muscle-strengthening activities per week.
The Guidelines outline:
- physical activity: the benefits, risks, types and dimensions of physical activity for older people
- physical inactivity and sedentary behaviour: the risks of physical inactivity and sedentary behaviour, older people who do not meet recommended activity levels, Green Prescriptions and older people who are frail
- New Zealand population profile: physical activity among older New Zealanders, safety, and factors that enable and act as barriers to physical activity
- physical activity for preventing and managing chronic (long-term) health conditions, and for enhancing general health.