Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for Children and Youth: An Integration of Physical Activity, Sedentary Behaviour, and Sleep

Appl Physiol Nutr Metab. 2016 Jun;41(6 Suppl 3):S311-27. doi: 10.1139/apnm-2016-0151.


Leaders from the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology convened representatives of national organizations, content experts, methodologists, stakeholders, and end-users who followed rigorous and transparent guideline development procedures to create the Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for Children and Youth: An Integration of Physical Activity, Sedentary Behaviour, and Sleep. These novel guidelines for children and youth aged 5-17 years respect the natural and intuitive integration of movement behaviours across the whole day (24-h period). The development process was guided by the Appraisal of Guidelines for Research Evaluation (AGREE) II instrument and systematic reviews of evidence informing the guidelines were assessed using the Grading of Recommendations Assessment, Development, and Evaluation (GRADE) approach. Four systematic reviews (physical activity, sedentary behaviour, sleep, integrated behaviours) examining the relationships between and among movement behaviours and several health indicators were completed and interpreted by expert consensus. Complementary compositional analyses were performed using Canadian Health Measures Survey data to examine the relationships between movement behaviours and health indicators. A stakeholder survey was employed (n = 590) and 28 focus groups/stakeholder interviews (n = 104) were completed to gather feedback on draft guidelines. Following an introductory preamble, the guidelines provide evidence-informed recommendations for a healthy day (24 h), comprising a combination of sleep, sedentary behaviours, light-, moderate-, and vigorous-intensity physical activity. Proactive dissemination, promotion, implementation, and evaluation plans have been prepared in an effort to optimize uptake and activation of the new guidelines. Future research should consider the integrated relationships among movement behaviours, and similar integrated guidelines for other age groups should be developed.

Keywords: GRADE; clinical practice guidelines; directives pour la pratique clinique; exercice physique; exercise; healthy living; lifestyle; mode de vie; public health; recommandations; recommendations; santé publique; vie saine.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adolescent Behavior
  • Canada
  • Child
  • Child Behavior
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Exercise*
  • Focus Groups
  • Guidelines as Topic*
  • Health Behavior
  • Humans
  • Sedentary Behavior*
  • Sleep*