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Healthy Exercise for All Campaign

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Fitness Programmes for Children

  1. Body weight of Hong Kong children
  2. Why should we manage our body weight?
  3. How to define obesity?
  4. How to avoid being overweight?
  5. Guidelines on the amount of physical activity for children
  6. Physical activity and calorie expenditure
  7. Simple circuit training
  8. Fitness training course for children
  9. Virtual class for simple circuit training
  10. Download pamphlet of body weight management of children

IV. How to avoid being overweight?
  1. Maintain a controlled and balanced diet


The daily calorie and nutrient requirement of a child varies with age, gender, body height, body weight, activity level and health conditions.  When choosing suitable food for their children, parents should pay attention to nutrition labels in order to have a better understanding of the ingredients and nutritional values of food in addition to following the Food Pyramid.


  1. Doing regular exercise

  2. Apart from maintaining a healthy diet, doing exercise is also important in controlling body weight. Regular exercise can help burn excessive calories, avoid the accumulation of body fat, effectively increase metabolism, and strengthen muscles, bones and cardiopulmonary system.

Parents should take heed of the following guidelines on doing exercise:

1. It is very important to choose the right exercise.

  • Children should be encouraged to choose the exercise that they find suitable and enjoyable in order to maintain the habit of doing exercise.

  • Children should be encouraged to choose the exercise that is suitable for their age and physical development.

  • Emphasis should be placed on developing an interest in doing exercise and finding joy in the process.

  • More than one type of exercise can be done in a workout.

  • It is encouraged to include exercise in our daily lives, e.g. stair climbing instead of using escalators.

  • Emphasis should be placed on the benefits of the exercise for the whole body, e.g. running, cycling and swimming.


Parents should choose the most suitable time of the day to accompany their children to do exercise.
Choose a favourite place to do exercise, e.g. a nearby park, sports ground or sports centre.
It is encouraged that parents, other family members or friends should do exercise together with children.
Adopt a progressive and step-by-step approach in doing exercise, e.g. moderately increase the duration of exercise each time.
Parents should praise and encourage their children if they have made an effort to do exercise and showed progress (e.g. achieving weight loss or an increase in the amount of exercise).
Keep a record of the amount of exercise done each time in order to monitor the progress.



  1. Breaking bad habits

The following are some practical suggestions about breaking bad eating/drinking and behavioural habits and developing a positive habit of doing exercise:



Parents should set a good example and do some exercise (e.g. jogging, hiking or walking for a short distance instead of taking a ride or using escalators) together with their children.




It is important to help children manage their emotions. At times of emotional upset, doing exercise instead of indulging in binge eating will help relieve stress. Also, children should be encouraged to talk with their parents and teachers.



Breakfast, lunch and dinner are equally important for a healthy balanced diet. Avoid picky eating, skipping meals or eating too much.




Children should be discouraged from developing a habit of eating foods with high fat, salt or sugar. Choose healthy food items (e.g. fruit) in small quantity as snacks of indicated.



Eat slowly to allow time for the brain to receive a feeling of fullness. It also helps digestion.



Reduce screen time and do more physical activities.



Getting enough sleep (7 to 8 hours a day) will help improve physical fitness.


Children can achieve effective weight management and live a healthier life full of energy if they can break their bad habits and establish habits of healthy eating and doing exercise under the guidance of their parents.



Acknowledgement : Physical Fitness Association of Hong Kong, China
Prince of Wales Hospital Department of Physiotherapy

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