Family Tips: Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines
In March 2012, the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology (CSEP) released the first Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines for the Early Years (aged 0–4 years). It also released the first Canadian Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines for the Early Years (aged 0–4 years)
These guidelines are relevant to infants (aged less than one year), toddlers (aged one to two years) and preschoolers (aged three to four years). A child’s gender, race, ethnicity or family socio-economic status does not change these recommendations.
Parents and caregivers should encourage infants, toddlers and preschoolers to participate in a variety of physical activities. Physical activity should support children’s healthy growth and development, be age-appropriate, enjoyable and safe, and occur at home, at childcare and in the community.
Sedentary behaviour and screen time
Sedentary behaviours generally involve sitting or lying down. These include television viewing, using a computer, reading and drawing, and motorized transportation. Many young children spend too much time being sedentary.
For healthy growth and development, parents and caregivers are encouraged to limit sedentary behaviours of infants, toddlers and preschoolers at home, at childcare and in the community.
Adapted from CSEP and Active Healthy Kids Canada (2012).