Physical Activity is any type of body movement that results in energy expenditure above that considered standard when the body is at rest.

Physical activities are important to prevent the person being sedentary, influencing the achievement of a good quality of life and health. Maintaining an adequate level of body movement primarily helps to prevent likely heart problems and stroke.

Learn more about Physical inactivity.

To avoid physical inactivity, the ideal is that the average person has 150 minutes of physical activities per week, ie approximately 30 minutes of physical movement per day, 5 days per week.

Physical Activity
Physical Activity

Benefits of physical activity

There are several benefits of physical activity to people, mainly helping to strengthen muscles, joints and bones. It also provides increased body agility, flexibility, physical endurance and good cardio-respiratory fitness.

According to subject matter experts, regular physical activity helps to improve an individual’s quality of life, such as sleep, mood, mental and physical disposition, diet, skin and hair appearance, virility, among other things.

Other noteworthy benefits of physical activity are: improved blood circulation; strengthening of the immune system; aid in weight loss and fat loss; increased metabolism; improve motor coordination; anxiety reduction; and improvement in self esteem.

Read more about Physical Fitness.

Difference Between Physical Activity And Exercise

Physical activity is characterized by any body movement made by skeletal muscles when they are above resting level. Walking, sweeping the house, walking the dog, playing, etc. are considered physical activities. Physical exercises, on the other hand, have a systematized sequence of movements aimed at working on specific parts of the body more intensely. Bodybuilding, push ups and sit ups are some examples of specific physical exercises.

It is any movement of the body that makes the muscles work and requires more energy than being at rest. Walking, running, dancing, swimming, practicing yoga and working in the garden or garden are a few examples of physical activity.

Types of physical activity

The four main types of physical activity are aerobic activity, muscle strengthening activities, bone strengthening activities and stretching. Aerobic activity benefits the heart and lungs the most.

Aerobic activity

Aerobic activity moves large muscles, such as those in the arms and legs. Running, swimming, walking, cycling, dancing and scissor jumping are examples of aerobic activity. Aerobic activity is also called resistance activity.

Aerobic activity makes the heart beat faster than usual. During this type of activity the breathing also becomes faster. Over time, regular aerobic activity makes the heart and lungs stronger and function better.

Other types of physical activity

The other types of physical activity – activities to strengthen muscles, those that strengthen bones and stretching – benefit the body in other ways.

Muscle strengthening activities improve muscle strength, power and endurance. Doing push-ups on the floor (push-ups), doing sit-ups, lifting weights, climbing stairs and digging in the garden or garden are examples of muscle strengthening activities.

In the activities of strengthening the bones, the feet, legs or arms support the weight of the body and the muscles exert pressure against the bones. This helps strengthen the bones. Running, walking, jumping rope and lifting weights are examples of bone strengthening activities.

Muscle strengthening and bone strengthening activities can also be aerobic. It all depends on whether they force the heart and lungs to work more than usual. For example, running is an aerobic and bone strengthening activity.

Stretching improves flexibility and the ability to completely move joints. Touching your toes, doing side stretches and doing yoga exercises are examples of stretching.

Degrees of intensity in aerobic activity

Aerobic activity can be of different degrees: mild, moderate or intense. Moderate and intense aerobic activity is more beneficial to the heart than mild aerobic activity. However, mild activity is better than lack of activity.

The degree of intensity depends on the effort that is necessary to make the activity. Generally, people who are not physically fit have to work harder than those who are in better shape. For that reason, what represents a mild activity for one person may be an activity of moderate intensity for another.

Soft and moderate activities

Soft activities are ordinary daily tasks that do not require much effort. Moderate activities make the heart, lungs and muscles work more than usual.

On a scale of 0 to 10, moderate activities correspond to a 5 or a 6 and produce obvious increases in respiratory and heart rates. A person who is doing a moderate activity can speak but not sing.

Intense activities

Intense activities make the heart, lungs and muscles work hard. On a scale of 0 to 10, the intense activity corresponds to a 7 or an 8. A person who is performing an intense activity can only say a few words before stopping for breath.

Examples of aerobic activities

Below are several examples of aerobic activities. Depending on the physical form of the person who performs them, these activities can be mild, moderate or intense:

  • Perform gardening work that increases the heart rate, such as digging or cleaning the ground with a hoe.
  • Walking, hiking, jogging and running.
  • Do water aerobics or swim from one end of the pool to the other several times.
  • Ride a bike, skateboard, skate and jump rope.
  • Practice dance and aerobic dance.
  • Play tennis, football, hockey and basketball.

Other meanings and concepts that may interest you

 Meaning of Physical Education
 Meaning of Sedentary Lifestyle
 Meaning of Aptitude
 Meaning of Flexibility
 Meaning of Strength
 Meaning of Quality of Life
 Health Meaning
 Meaning of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights
 Meaning of Astenia
 Meaning of Kinesiotherapy


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