Results from Ireland's 2014 report card on physical activity in children and youth

Deirdre M. Harrington, Sarahjane Belton, Tara Coppinger, Muireann Cullen, Alan Donnelly, Kieran Dowd, Teresa Keating, Richard Layte, Marie Murphy, Niamh Murphy, Elaine Murtagh, Catherine Woods

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


Background:Physical activity (PA) levels are a key performance indicator for policy documents in Ireland. The first Ireland Report Card on Physical Activity in Children and Youth aims to set a robust baseline for future surveillance of indicators related to PA in children and youth.
Methods:Data collected between 2003−2010 on more than 35,000 7- to 18-year-old children and youth were used and graded using a standardized grading system for 10 indicators.
Results:Grades assigned for the indicators were as follows: overall physical activity levels, D-; sedentary behavior (TV viewing), C-; organized sport participation, C-: physical education, D-; active play, inconclusive (INC); active transportation, D; school, C-, community and the built environment, B; family, INC; and government, INC.
Conclusions:PA recommendations exist in Ireland but this Report Card has shown that participation is still low. A number of promising policies, programs and services are in place but these require thorough evaluation and adequate resourcing. Agreement and implementation of a common framework for the systematic surveillance of indictors related to PA of children and youth is necessary to monitor change over time and ensure the impact of promising work is captured.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S63-S68
JournalJournal of Physical Activity and Health
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2014


  • Physical education
  • Sedentary
  • Sport
  • Transportation


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