PA Alliance and May as Fitness Month
Clubs and fitness facilities, please scroll down to complete the May activity form.
The Pennsylvania Fitness Alliance and its members are partnering with its national trade association, IHRSA-International Health Racquet & Sportsclub Association, to promote the National Physical Fitness and Sports Month and work within the communities in which the fitness facility owners operate to make fitness education and programming available to those who are interested.
To combat these health challenges, many communities, non-profit organizations, and health clubs in this Commonwealth have created programs targeting children and adolescents, developing specific programs for families to exercise together
- Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many Pennsylvanians have experienced a lack of physical activity. Gym and leisure spot closures and regular remote work have caused a decline in people’s ability and motivation to get up and move, despite the great benefits that physical activity has on one’s physical and mental well-being. According to the CDC, physical activity provides valuable health benefits for all age groups, both immediate and long-term. A single bout of moderate to vigorous activity can immediately provide sleep quality improvement, reduces stress, reduces feelings of anxiety, and lowers blood pressure. In the long term, consistent physical activity can improve brain health by lowering the risk of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, and depression. It can also improve heart health by lowering the risk of heart disease, the number one killer of both men and women in America, and reduces the risk of developing various forms of cancer such as bladder, breast, colon, and lung.
Benefits of Healthy Living and Fitness
- A healthy adolescent lifestyle will promote a healthy mind and body as the youth enter the job market and higher education.
- Being overweight as a child or adolescent can lead to confidence issues that affect the student in the classroom.
- Being overweight in adolescence could increase the risk of developing long-term illnesses such as sleep apnea, asthma, and Type 2 diabetes.
- Being overweight as a child increases the risk of being obese as an adult.
- 7% of children ages 10-17 in the Commonwealth, or more than 197,000 kids, are identified as being overweight or obese; and
- According to the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans report issued by the United States Department of Health and Human Service, children and adolescents benefit from 60 minutes or more of daily physical activity through a combination of aerobic, muscle-strengthening, and bone-strengthening activities.
- According to Pennsylvania’s Healthy People 2030 report:
- 35% of Pennsylvania adults age 20 or over are considered obese.
- 25% of Pennsylvanians do not engage in any physical/leisure-time activity.
- The rates are even higher for the following demographic groups (Black, Hispanic, and individuals with less than a high school education). Obesity is also associated with the leading causes of death in the United States and worldwide, including diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and some types of cancer.
- Nationally, only 26 percent of men, 19 percent of women, and 20 percent of adolescents report sufficient activity to meet the relevant aerobic and muscle-strengthening guidelines
- Pennsylvania has established a goal that 59% of Pennsylvanians, by 2030, will participate in regular moderate physical activity. Pennsylvania has yet to reach that threshold.
- About $117 billion in annual health care costs and about 10 percent of premature mortality are associated with inadequate physical activity
- The estimated medical costs of people struggling with obesity were also $1,429 higher than costs for people with a healthy weight.
- For pregnant women, regular moderate physical activity reduces the risk of excessive weight gain, gestational diabetes, and postpartum depression.
- For older adults, regular moderate physical activity reduces the risk of fall-related injuries.
May Activity Tracking Form for all Facilities
We are asking all health clubs and fitness facilities of all types to enter information here on activity and participation in your facility during the month of May 2022. We will aggregate this information and craft a strong message to the public and to the PA Department of Health on our findings.