Get active

Get active your way, every day!

Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines

The Canadian Physical Activity Guidelines recommend how much physical activity is needed for healthy living.

  • Children 0-4 years:

    • Infants (aged less than 1 year) should be physically active several times daily – particularly through interactive floor-based play.

    • Toddlers (aged 1–2 years) and preschoolers (aged 3–4 years) should accumulate at least 180 minutes of physical activity at any intensity spread throughout the day, including: 

      • A variety of activities in different environments;

      • Activities that develop movement skills;

      • Progression towards at least 60 minutes of energetic play by 5 years of age.

  • Children and Youth should accumulate at least 60 minutes of medium to high intense physical activity daily
  • Adults and Older Adults should accumulate at least 150 minutes of medium to high intense physical activity per week

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New Canadian Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines for Children and Youth

These guidelines recommend limiting children’s inactive behaviour to improve health benefits such as:

  • Doing little or no physical movement
  • Sitting
  • Watching TV
  • Playing video games
  • Using a computer or smartphones other than for school or work

For healthy growth and development, caregivers should minimize the time infants (aged less than 1 year), toddlers (aged 1 to 2 years) and preschoolers (aged 3 to 4 years) spend being sedentary during waking hours. This includes prolonged sitting (e.g., stroller, high chair or car seat) for more than one hour at a time.

For good health, children aged 5 to 11 years and youth aged 12 to 17 years should limit the time they spend being sedentary or inactive each day by less than 2 hours per day and using less motorized transportation (cars, buses), and spending less time sitting.

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More ideas to get you moving

  • Reduce screen time by 30 minutes each day and replace that time with physical activity
  • Every step counts, borrow a pedometer and get walking!
  • iWalk iBike The City of Ottawa is introducing a new promotional campaign to encourage walking and cycling as viable transportation choices. Visit iwalkibike.ca and track your progress, earn badges, submit your reason, and be eligible to win great prizes.
  • Active transportation refers to any form of human-powered transportation such as walking, cycling, using a wheelchair, in-line skating and skateboarding
  • The Green Communities of Canada provides resources, tools, information and links for schools and communities to create your own Active and Safe Routes to School program

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Woman’s health

The Woman Alive/Femme active Program

The Woman Alive Program provides affordable physical activity programs to women on limited income in order to increase their capacity to care for their own health. The Woman Alive Leader's Manual displays how partnerships between two or more agencies can be an excellent method of pooling resources to offer an effective and affordable program.

The Woman Alive Leader's Manual is available in both English and French [PDF order form 69 KB] and is designed for community recreation professionals, public health departments, and other organizations working with women on limited incomes.

Come join this unique program at the following locations:

  • Dempsey Community Centre: 613-247-4846
  • Foster Farm Community Centre: 613-828-2004
  • Jack Purcell Community Centre: 613-564-1050
  • Kanata Leisure Centre: 613-591-9283
  • Lowertown Community Centre: 613-789-3930
  • Overbrook Community Centre: 613-742-5147
  • Plant Recreation Centre: 613-232-3000
  • South-East Ottawa Community Health Centre: 613-737-5115

For additional questions or to receive some health promotion resources, call Ottawa Public Health Information at 613-580-6744.