Huppert drives initiative to tackle physical inactivity timebomb

8 April, 2014 No Comments

Cambridge MP Julian Huppert is behind a national drive to get people exercising as a growing epidemic of physical activity costs the UK economy £20 billion a year.

Julian has been part of a cross-party group of politicians setting out clear recommendations to address the issue head-on with the backing of world class athletes including Paula Radcliffe, cyclist Mark Cavendish and Arsenal footballer, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain.

He is co-chair of the All-Party Commission on Physical Activity who has released its first report today (Tuesday, April 8) setting out the scale and scope of the problem and mapping out specific areas that require change.

“Inactivity poses huge problems for our health, and yet far too many of us do very little physical activity, if any,” he said. “It’s not about being a top sportsperson, it’s about doing something regularly – something we can all manage. We can all walk or cycle more often, find time to go for a swim or a jog, or join a local sports club. It’s not hard and it does matter.

“Otherwise, we will continue to face growing obesity levels, more diabetes and other illnesses, worsening our health and how we will be able to live our lives when we are older. It also costs the country a huge amount of money.

“We should all make sure that we are physically active and that our children are too.”

Evidence collected by the commission reveals that over half of adults in the UK do not meet the guidelines for daily physical activity. A lack of physical activity leads to 37,000 premature deaths a year and doubles the rate of absenteeism from work.

The report is supported by multi-sector organisations including the British Heart Foundation, Lawn Tennis Association, Sustrans, Nike, the Premier League and The Young Foundation.

It was presented by Julian and his co-chairs to 10 Downing Street this morning to discuss the urgent need to address the issue.

The full report can be found here:

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