Scottish Household Survey – Physical Activity

February 2, 2018 by No Comments | Category Uncategorized

Scotland has, as a nation, become more active over the last five years according to data from the Scottish Household Survey. This increase, interestingly, has been driven by a rise in recreational walking. Even more surprising was that while women tend to be less active than men, they are walking more than men. The survey also tells us that while older people are less likely to be physically active, the proportion that are has been increasing since 2007 and again this is primarily due to an increase in walking. Those living in deprived areas of Scotland or suffering from a long term health condition are also less likely to be physically active.

Data from the SHS on physical activity has also led to the development of initiatives all over Scotland. For example, Paths for All is a charity supported by the government that runs walking groups, some of which specialise in encouraging those living with dementia or cancer to be more active. Findings based on SHS data also supported the introduction of the Daily Mile in schools, which gets children outside every school day to participate in some physical activity for 15 minutes. It has proved to be very popular.

The Scottish Government has made increasing physical activity of the people of Scotland a priority, and uses data from the SHS to monitor its progress in this. The insight into Scotland’s physical activity provided by the SHS is vital for making policies that actually apply to what’s going on across the nation. Not only in comparing recreational walking levels year on year, but also in identifying if other types of physical activity are becoming more or less popular.

Discover more at:


Leave a comment