News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 

Survey Reveals A Nation Of Extremes - Gym Bunnies And Sloths

News release
9th January 2013

Survey Reveals A Nation Of Extremes - Gym Bunnies And Sloths

• New survey finds more than a quarter of Kiwis exercise less than once per week or not at all
• 24% of people say they exercise at least once a day
• Dunedin found to be New Zealand’s most active city, Auckland the least active

Exercise is less of a habit, more of a ‘once in a blue moon’ event for a worrying number of Kiwis.

A survey of 2000 New Zealanders by Southern Cross Health Society has found that 17% exercise less than once per week. A further 10% said they never exercise.

The survey revealed a huge divide in the nation’s exercise habits. While a large number of people were getting little or no exercise at all, another 17% were exercising at least once a day, while a further 7% said they exercised more than once a day.

People from Dunedin were the nation’s most frequent exercisers, with 47% saying they exercised at least four times or more every week, with Wellingtonians nipping closely at their heels. Aucklanders were the least frequent exercisers, with 45% exercising once a week or less.

Southern Cross Health Society Chief Executive Peter Tynan said though there were positives, the high number of inactive people was a huge worry for the nation.

“Regular physical activity can help to reduce the risk of chronic conditions such as cardiovascular diseases, cancers, obesity and diabetes. Preventative action through exercise can help to save lives and tax dollars.”

The under 30s and those aged 50 plus were the most likely age groups to exercise. When comparing household composition, people with children were the least likely to regularly exercise.

Ministry of Health guidelines recommend adults should be doing at least 30 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity at least five days a week.

Tynan said commonly cited barriers such as time, convenience and expense of exercise could be worked around if the desire was there.

“There’s a misconception that exercise equals an hour at the gym. While that’s great if you can, just getting up at lunchtime and going for a brisk walk or running around at the park with the kids will have you nearing the recommended activity target. Your activity doesn’t need to be done in blocks, it can be three 10 minute bursts of activity instead of 30 minutes.”

The survey found that of those that did regular exercise, 46% had experienced weight loss as a result.

The biggest motivator cited to exercise was to improve health, with 55% of people saying this was a key reason they exercised. 40% were also in it to lose weight, while 34% said they enjoyed it. Only 20% of people said that improving their appearance was a motivator for exercising.

Said Tynan, “In addition to physical benefits, regular exercise is also great for our mental wellbeing and boosting energy levels.”

Southern Cross Health Society is New Zealand’s largest health insurer and also offers other health-related initiatives, such as corporate wellness programmes and Health Management Accounts.


NEW ZEALANDERS’ FREQUENCY OF EXERCISE


Click for big version.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
Obituary: Whānau Announce The Passing Of Bruce Stewart QSM

Matua Bruce was an award-winning builder before he embarked on a journey to build Tapu Te Ranga Marae in 1974... He built Tapu Te Ranga Marae from recycled material with just $25 and a dream. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The America’s Cup

The fact New Zealand now reigns supreme once again in the most sophisticated contest in the world’s most elite sport – yacht racing – can’t help but reflect the trajectory the country has been on since the 1980s... More>>

ALSO:

Howard Davis: Christopher Marlowe & 'The Tragedy Of Dr. Faustus'

Previous versions of 'The Devil's Pact' can be traced back to the fourth century, Marlowe deviated significantly by depicting his protagonist as unable to burn his books or repent to a merciful God in order to have his contract annulled... More>>

ALSO:

Gold For RNZ: Muslim Post-9/11 Series, Kim Hill Win In New York

The Radio New Zealand podcast series Public Enemy has won a gold award for excellence for its presenter, Mohamed Hassan, at the prestigious New York Festival Radio Awards announced in Manhattan today. RNZ National’s Saturday Morning host, Kim Hill, also received a gold award for Best Radio Personality. More>>

Human Rights Commission: Give Nothing To Racism

A campaign urging New Zealanders to give nothing to racism and refuse to spread intolerance has been launched by some of the country’s most well-known people. More>>

Louis Vuitton Series Win: Emirates Team NZ Will Challenge For The America’s Cup

By beating Artemis 5-2 they now take on Oracle Team USA in the America’s Cup match starting next weekend. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION
 
 
  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland