A survey of Europeans’ physical-activity habits shows that only 15% are active in sports and that the average EU citizen spends more than six hours per day seated.
A Eurobarometer survey entitled ‘Health and food’ addresses the health and physical characteristics of Europeans, their diets and problems related to obesity and lack of exercise.
Depending to a large extent on their occupation, respondents declared that they spend on average a little more than six hours per day. The survey also reveals sharp differences in the level of physical activity taken by the respondents in different countries. The Luxembourgers, Finns and Germans appear to be the most sporty of EU-25 citizens, with one in four declaring they regularly enjoyed physical activity via sport or other leisure pastimes. But only 4% of Italians and 5% of Greeks make the same claim.
In more than half of the countries, close to 50% of respondents do not take any exercise, despite three-quarters declaring that the area where they live “offers sufficient opportunities to be physically active”.
The EU Platform for action on diet, physical activity and health is currently trying to find ways to promote physical activity among EU citizens and an EU White Paper on Sports for All, aiming to encourage citizens to do more sports and physical activity, is expected to be published in June 2007.