A report by the Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance (AHKGA) which assessed global levels and trends in child and adolescent physical activity finds that Canada continues to lag behind other countries in several key indicators. The report involved 682 experts who produced 57 country report cards, grading 10 common indicators. The resulting “Global Matrix” of grades allowed for an examination of global patterns and highlights how our changing world is affecting children’s physical activity levels.
Canada’s submissions to the Global Matrix 4.0 are the grades from the recent 2022 ParticipACTION Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Youth, the country’s most comprehensive assessment of child and youth physical activity.
Areas of concern
Canada is 28th in the world in Overall Physical Activity (Grade: D), 52nd in Sedentary Behaviour (Grade F), and just 25th in the overall blended ranking across all indicators (Grade C-).
On the positive side
Canada fares better in many social, cultural and political indicators – we are 9th in the world for Community and Environment (Grade B), 16th in Family and Peers (Grade C), and 20th in Government (Grade B-).
ParticipACTION is a national non-profit charitable organization that inspires and supports Canadians to make physical activity a vital part of their everyday life. As Canada’s leading physical activity brand, ParticipACTION works with its partners, which include organizations in the sport, physical activity and recreation sectors, alongside government and corporate sponsors, to help Canadians reduce sedentary time and move more through innovative engagement initiatives and thought leadership. ParticipACTION is generously supported by the Government of Canada. Learn how ParticipACTION has been moving Canadians for over 50 years at ParticipACTION.com and download the free ParticipACTION app to access a fun, evidence-informed tool that empowers you on your physical activity journey.
The global comparisons were led by the Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance (AHKGA; www.activehealthykids.org), a registered not-for-profit organization made up of researchers, health professionals, and stakeholders who work together to advance physical activity in children and adolescents around the world. AHKGA’s vision is a world of active healthy kids, with a mission to power the global movement to get kids moving through thought leadership, knowledge translation and mobilization, capacity building, and advocacy. The dominant effort of the AHKGA to date has been its Global Matrix initiative. Each participating country’s research process to determine grades was based on a harmonized framework and standardized grading rubric. Ten common indicators were compared: Overall Physical Activity, Organized Sport and Physical Activity, Active Play, Active Transportation, Sedentary Behaviour, Physical Fitness, Family and Peers, School, Community and Environment, and Government. Report Cards from each of the 57 countries, as well as the results of the global comparisons, were presented at the 9th International Society for Physical Activity and Health Congress in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, and published in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health on October 24, 2022. Complete details of the Global Matrix 4.0, each country’s leaders, grades, report cards, and more are available at www.activehealthykids.org. The “Global Matrix 1.0” (2014, 15 countries), “Global Matrix 2.0” (2016, 38 countries), and “Global Matrix 3.0” (2018, 49 countries) findings are also available on the AHKGA website.