Physical activity intensity

What counts as light activity for children?

Light activity for children includes a range of activities, such as:

  • Standing up
  • Moving around
  • Walking
  • Less energetic play
  • Moving slowly

What counts as an energetic activity for children?
Energetic activities suitable for most children who can walk on their own include:

Energetic Activity

Table 20 Energetic Activity

Energetic activity for children will make kids “huff and puff” and can include organised activities, such as dance and gymnastics. Any sort of active play will usually include bursts of energetic activity.

Active play opportunities should encourage young children to:

  • use their large muscle groups
  • practice a wide range of different movements
  • experience a variety of play spaces and equipment
  • set up their own play areas
  • make up their own active play
  • have fun and feel good about themselves and what they can do

Under 5s also benefit from physical activity other than active play, such as walking to the shops.

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