American Council on Exercise by American Council on Exercise

The 2nd edition of the U.S. Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans (Guidelines) were released last Monday, November 12th by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. This is the first set of revisions to the Guidelines since their original release in 2008. The first step in the development of the 2nd edition was forming an advisory committee to conduct a scientific review of new research and evidence around physical activity and its health benefits. These findings prompted updated recommendations for specific subgroups of the population, as well as recommendations for new subgroups. Populations targeted in this second edition include:

  • Children ages 3-5 years of age.
  • Youth ages 6-17
  • Older adults
  • Women during pregnancy and the postpartum period
  • Adults with chronic health conditions
  • Adults with disabilities


An important message one can take from the scientific report and the Guidelines and that is of paramount interest to exercise professionals and health coaches is that sedentary behavior is a health risk and we need to get more Americans moving on a regular basis. Some promising support for getting people moving from sedentary to active lifestyles is that any amount of physical activity provides some health benefits.

These are only a few of the highlights from the scientific report and the Guidelines themselves.  Stay tuned for a series of blog posts that will delve into the new updates in the Guidelines.


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