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What counts as Exercise?

Physical activity should include a mixture of moderate exercise, vigorous exercise and strengthening exercise.
Examples of moderate activity includes, walking, playing in the playground, riding a scooter, skateboarding, rollerblading, cycling on level ground.

Examples of vigorous activity includes: playing chase, energetic dancing, swimming, running, gymnastics, football, rugby martial arts, cycling on hilly terrain.

Examples of strengthening exercises include: Sit ups, press ups, climbing, resistance exercise, football, basketball and tennis

Why should young people exercise?

Physical activity is important for young people, it helps build strong bones and muscles which will help in later life, and establishing a good level of fitness when they are young will make it easier to maintain a healthy weight throughout life. It will also help them sleep better, and concentrate better at school. Participating in sports and activities will help with confidence and developing social skills.

What is a safe level of exercise?

The guidelines currently are that children should have 60mins of physical activity a day; this should be a mixture of vigorous and moderate activity. Three days a week should include some strength training to improve bone and muscle strength. There are no guidelines on a maximum amount of exercise a child should do however it is important that they get adequate rest. Also it is worth considering that children develop at different rates and so different activities may not be appropriate. Try and maintain a dialogue with the children and young people so you can understand their ambition and motivation.

How do I encourage a child or young person to exercise?

There are several ways to encourage a child or young person to engage in activity. You could find small ways to integrate a bit more activity in to their life, for example by encouraging active travel, help them find local activities or sports that they are interested in trying and try and facilitate them trying, perhaps with friends. You could also speak to the family as a whole and help them explore ways to get active together.

How do I raise a concern around over or under exercising?

If you have concerns about a child who you think is exercising too much, or too little, you should speak to their parent or carer in the first instance, they may not be aware that there is a problem. They should address any concerns with the child, and should be signposted to contact the child’s GP or school nurse for additional support. Alternatively, other areas of this website may be able to offer help addressing their wellbeing.

Wellbeing Page
Eating Well Page

Services available

School nurses or GPs may be able to provide advice. Get Going will see young people and their families if their BMI centile is greater than 91. (You can use NHS BMI calculator for this) Please contact Alex Piercy for more information or to make a referral to the Get Going team – tel 07702 275246 or email

Adults can access the Health Trainer service for one to one lifestyle improvement sessions, for specific weight management LivingWise offer a 12 week group based programme free to access for people with BMI 25kg/m2 and over (23.5kg/m2 if of Asian, African, or African-Caribbean origin)

To get more information or to register with a Health Trainer, there are three ways to get in touch with the Health Trainer service:
Telephone: 01724 292170
Website: North Lincs – Health trainers
or visit us at the Ironstone Centre, West Street, Scunthorpe, DN15 6HX

NLC Website
Change For Life
Eating Well Page
BMI Calculator