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UK adults spend 'five times longer' in front of screens than they do exercising: poll

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The majority of UK adults spend five times longer in front of a TV, tablet, PC or mobile screen than they do exercising in a normal week, according to a recent poll.

The research released by ukactive, surveyed 2,095 UK adults over the age of 18. It showed that 64 per cent of UK adults spend more than 10 hours a week watching television or playing video games, while 59 per cent of UK adults spend more than 10 hours a week browsing the internet.

It was recorded that only 11 per cent of adults in the country spend more than 10 hours a week doing exercise such as walking, jogging, gym/studio work or playing team sports.

The potential for increased uptake in activity was highlighted by 49 per cent of people saying that they would do more exercise if they could find opportunities that were free, with this percentage rising to 65 per cent for adults aged 18-24.

Convenience was also found to play a part in people’s decision making, with 35 per cent of adults stating that they would exercise more if the location suited them.

The growing prominence of technology may soon make significant headway in increasing participation, as the poll revealed that 35 per cent of adults said that being able to track their progress via devices like mobile apps and pedometers would encourage them to exercise.

"Lifestyle is too often the commonly accepted excuse for the UK public not being more active. While that might be true, these results are important for gyms, leisure centres and other fitness providers because they clearly show that people are actually willing to do more, if the conditions are right,” said David Stalker, CEO of ukactive.

The poll follows a report in August that claimed Britain is on the cusp of a major health crisis, with the general public failing to meet a seven out of eight recommended health guidelines.

At the start of the year, ukactive also released its incisive Turning the Tide of Inactivity report, which revealed that the UK could make major savings as well as save numbers of lives by tackling the population’s current exercise deficiency.

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The majority of UK adults spend five times longer in front of a TV, tablet, PC or mobile screen than they do exercising in a normal week, according to a recent poll.
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Inactivity levels in the UK are becoming increasingly troublesome to people's health / Shutterstock.com/Brian A Jackson
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