Outside school the Scottish Government is hindering efforts to develop a culture of physical activity by prioritising aviation and new roads over walking and cycling infrastructure.Alison Johnstone MSP
Alison Johnstone MSP, Health spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, today (17 Nov) called for a physical activity summit after research showed that Scotland's children are some of the least active in the world.
The Active Healthy Kids Report Card by the University of Strathclyde ranked Scotland joint-last for physical activity and time spent in front of screens, with obesity levels projected to reach 40 per cent by 2030. The study found that among 11-15 year olds, only 21 per cent of boys and 15 per cent of girls met the international recommendation of at least 60 minutes of daily physical activity.
Alison Johnstone, Health spokesperson for the Scottish Greens and MSP for Lothian, said:
"This research is the latest warning sign that we're heading for a public health crisis. The researchers make the point that Scotland has one of the world's best natural environments yet we have not developed a culture of physical activity. We need to bring together all relevant organisations at a summit to properly tackle this.
"We should not be resting on our laurels on PE in schools. While most primary and secondary schools are meeting the very modest targets, we need to look to countries such as Slovenia, where investment in primary schools means they offer over an hour of professionally-supported physical activity every day.
"And outside school the Scottish Government is hindering efforts to develop a culture of physical activity by prioritising aviation and new roads over walking and cycling infrastructure. We're also seeing local authorities allowing developments that remove valuable green space. If we want to head off this public health crisis we need a much more joined up approach."