Physical activity may be assessed in several different ways and different domains, such as through:

  • Leisure-time activities, such as participation in organized or in unorganized sports, physical activities, and play;
  • Commuting to work, school, for errands;
  • Work-related activities;
  • Activities related to chores and household tasks.

The CFLRI monitors trends in physical activity levels among adults over time in each of these domains. Traditionally, leisure-time physical activity has been often used as an important measure for determining overall physical activity, as it represents physical activity which is volitional (or activities which individuals choose to participate in as opposed to being part of work or chores).

Generally speaking, physical activity rates among adults have changed very little over the past 20 years, with about half of Canadian adults indicating that they are at least moderately active. Physical activity levels among adults have been found to vary by numerous individual and environmental factors. For example, physical activity rates are higher among men compared to women; and physical activity levels decrease with increasing age.[1][2]

[1] Canadian Fitness and Lifestyle Research Institute. 2016-2018 Physical activity Monitor, Custom Tabulation

[2] [1] Statistics Canada. Canadian Community Health Survey. Table 13-10-0096-01 Health characteristics, annual estimates.2018. Available here.

# By The


of Canadian children and youth between the ages of 5 and 19, participate in organized physical activity and sport.

Facts and Figures

Adult physical activity levels by age 

Physical activity levels among adults decreases with increasing age, whereby considerably fewer (37%) older adults (aged 65 years or older) report engaging in 150 minutes of physical activity a week compared to those who are younger. This age-related difference in physical activity levels has persisted overtime. [1]

[1] Statistics Canada. Canadian Community Health Survey. Table 13-10-0096-01 Health characteristics, annual estimates.2018. Available here.

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Bulletin 3: Places to safely walk


This particular research bulletin examines Canadians’ perspectives about the amount of places to safely walk in their community, the level of satisfaction with the amount of places to safely walk, and finally, their usage of such places. Each of these factors are explored in relation to key socio-demographic factors such as gender, age, education level, household income level, employment and marital status, region, and community characteristics.

Read Moreabout Bulletin 3: Places to safely walk

The CFLRI is currently conducting a study of physical activity opportunities in Canadian schools. If you have received an invitation to participate in this and have any questions regarding the study please contact us at Thank you for your participation!