Meeting the Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for Children and Youth

Health Rep. 2017 Oct 18;28(10):3-7.


Background: The Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for Children and Youth: An Integration of Physical Activity, Sedentary Behaviour, and Sleep, provide specific recommendations on the amount of time over a typical 24-hour day that children and youth aged 5 to 17 should spend in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (at least 60 minutes), recreational screen time (no more than 2 hours), and sleep (9 to 11 hours for 5- to 13-year-olds; 8 to 10 hours for 14- to 17-year-olds).

Data and methods: Based on combined results of cycles 2 (2009-to-2011) and 3 (2012-to-2013) of the Canadian Health Measures Survey, this analysis examines average daily moderate-to-vigorous physical activity, screen time and sleep duration of 5- to 11-year-olds and 12- to 17-year-olds, and the percentages meeting the 24-Hour Guidelines' recommendations. Findings are presented overall and by age group and sex. Differences in average daily times between groups were tested for statistical significance, as weredifferences between groups in the percentages meeting each recommendation and combination of recommendations.

Results: Overall, 17.5% of children and youth met the 24-Hour Guidelines' specific time recommendations. Higher percentages of children than youth (29.6% versus 5.5%) and boys than girls (22.9% versus 11.8%) met the recommendations. About a third (36.3%) met two of the three recommendations.

Interpretation: Recommendations for moderate-to-vigorous physical activity, sedentary behaviour, and sleep have higher levels of adherence among children than youth.

Keywords: Accelerometer; exercise; motor activity; physical activity; screen time; sleep.

MeSH terms

  • Accelerometry / instrumentation
  • Accelerometry / methods*
  • Adolescent
  • Canada
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Female
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Sedentary Behavior*
  • Sleep / physiology*
  • Time Factors