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2022 Ireland North and South Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Adolescents

Physical activity levels in children and teenagers across Ireland and Northern Ireland have improved slightly over the past eight years but not all children and teens have an equal chance to be active, a new Active Healthy Kids Report Card has found.

The Ireland North and South Report Card on Physical Activity for Children and Adolescents has found a slight improvement in overall physical activity levels across the island of Ireland since 2016 but has also identified a number of inequalities.

The Report Card was produced as part of the Active Healthy Kids Global Alliance, established in 2014 to create a world of active healthy kids. Close to 70 countries have signed up and taken part in the global alliance to date. 

Under this global initiative all Report Cards are generated using a standardised grading system, with grades from A for succeeding with a large majority of children to F for succeeding with few children.

The 2022 Report Card is the third report of its kind for Ireland and Northern Ireland and provides a grade across eleven indicators for physical activity among children and teenagers.

Across the island of Ireland, it is recommended that children and adolescents, aged 6-17 years, attain on average 60 minutes per day of moderate-to-vigorous intensity physical activity throughout the week.

On evaluating data across both jurisdictions, the team of investigators awarded a C minus grade for overall physical activity in children and teens across the whole island, representing a slight improvement on the D grade awarded in 2016. Physical activity grades also improved for ‘School’ (C minus) and ‘Physical Education’ (D), while other indicators remained unchanged, and others yielded inconclusive results.


Grades were also awarded for Organised Sport Participation (C), Active Play (inconclusive), Active Transportation (Ireland D, Northern Ireland D minus), Sedentary Behaviour (C minus), Family and Peers (D plus), Community and the Built Environment (B plus), and Government (B). 

A new indicator for ‘Physical Fitness’ was inconclusive due to a lack of available data on fitness levels in children and teens in Ireland and Northern Ireland.

To read more see the Institute of Public Health website and to dowload the reports click on the relevant link below: