4727.0.55.001 - Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey: First Results, Australia, 2012-13  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 27/11/2013  First Issue
   Page tools: Print Print Page Print all pages in this productPrint All RSS Feed RSS Bookmark and Share Search this Product  
Contents >> Health risk factors >> Exercise levels

EXERCISE LEVELS

Being physically inactive is a significant risk factor for a range of chronic health conditions, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer. The 2003 Australian Burden of Disease Study estimated that physical inactivity is responsible for around 8% of the total burden of disease and injury in the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population. Physical inactivity is also associated with high body mass which accounts for 11% of the total burden of disease and injury for this population (Endnote 1).

RESULTS FROM 2012–13 — NON-REMOTE AREAS

In non-remote areas in 2012–13, three in five (61%) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 18 years and over reported that they were physically inactive (that is, sedentary or had exercised at a low level) in the week before the survey. Just over one-quarter (29%) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adults had exercised at a moderate level, and one in ten (10%), at a high level.

In 2012–13, just under half (47%) of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander adults in non-remote areas had met the National Physical Activity (NPA) Guidelines target of 30 minutes of moderate intensity physical activity on most days (or a total of 150 minutes per week). A smaller proportion (41%) had exercised for at least 150 minutes over five sessions in the previous week.

In non-remote areas, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men were significantly more likely than women to have exercised at moderate intensity (32% compared with 25%) and were twice as likely to have exercised at high intensity (14% compared with 7%) in the previous week. A significantly higher proportion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women than men in non-remote areas were physically inactive in 2012–13 (68% compared with 53%).

EXERCISE LEVELS(a) BY SEX,
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people(b)—2012–13
Graph: Exercise Levels by Sex

In 2012–13, a significantly higher proportion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men than women in non-remote areas had met the NPA target of 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise per week (52% compared with 42%) and had exercised for at least 150 minutes over five sessions in the previous week (45% compared with 38%).

In non-remote areas in 2012–13, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women were more likely than men to have been physically inactive in the previous week. This pattern was evident for all age groups.

PHYSICAL INACTIVITY(a) BY SEX AND AGE,
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people—2012–13
Graph: Physical Inactivity by Sex and Age

In 2012–13, a significantly higher proportion of older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men than women in non-remote areas, met the NPA target of 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise per week. Among people aged 45–54 years, the rates for men and women were 47% and 34%, respectively. Older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men were significantly more likely than older women to have exercised for at least 150 minutes over five sessions in the previous week — among 45-54 year olds (42% compared with 28%) and among those aged 55 years and over (38% of men compared with 28% of women).


HOW DO THESE RATES COMPARE WITH THE RATES FOR NON-INDIGENOUS PEOPLE?

After adjusting for differences in age structure between the two populations, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 18 years and over were more likely than non-Indigenous people to have been sedentary or exercising at low intensity (rate ratio of 1.1) and were only half as likely to have been exercising at high intensity (rate ratio of 0.6). The differences in the age standardised rates were statistically significant for both these measures.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people were also less likely than non-Indigenous people to have met the NPA targets of 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise per week or 150 minutes and 5 sessions per week (rate ratio of 0.9 for both). In both cases, the difference in the age standardised rates was statistically significant.
ENDNOTES

1. Vos T, Barker B, Stanley L, Lopez AD 2007. The Burden of Disease and Injury in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples 2003, School of Population Health, The University of Queensland, Brisbane

Previous PageNext Page